IT Systems in Hotels


Technology affects and influences the growth of virtually every industry in the modern world. Perhaps the hotel industry is a perfect example of the increasing role of information technology in driving sales and improving customer satisfaction having transformed over the years. Traditionally, the hotel was nothing more than a local business offering a room and a bed to customers that were predominantly travelers. However, with the development of the chain hotel concept, the use of information systems was necessitated by the increased pleasure and travel business. Subsequently, the improvement of information technology systems developed out of the burgeoning business and the need for consistent methods of tracking and maintaining business operations (Law & Jogaratnam, 2005). Today, hotels are on a transformation path in terms of IT systems having faced increased pressure to adopt modern technologies. Indeed, the change in customer expectations has necessitated the use of IT systems in hotels to ensure consistent fulfillment of customer needs.

The continued integration of intricate information technology systems into the workings of the hotel industry is not in doubt. Indeed, both local and global hotels are working endlessly to ensure that they tap into the powerful tool of IT systems to capitalize on increased sales and customer relations. The use of IT systems in hotels is not limited to the management of the establishments but the tracking of customer feedback through different portals. It is not surprising therefore that almost all players in the international hotel industry maintain an online platform through which they can maintain interaction with customers. Moreover, the use of user generated reviews and feedback is gaining a primary role in influencing the choice of hotels by other potential customers. In this regard, it is therefore prudent that ambitious hotel companies embrace information technology systems in their daily operations. The institution of an IT project must be guided by a number of concerns including the envisaged role and the potential uses of the system. Further, the information system should be dissected for its effects on the services offered by the specific hotel establishment. The economic effects of using an IT system should also be considered with respect to the hotels operations.


Effects of IS on hotel services

The formulation and implementation of an information system for hotels is dependent on the types of services offered in the industry. To a large extent, a fully implemented information system is likely to affect the services offered within the hotel industry. Indeed, decision makers must be aware of all the possible effects of the new information system to the range of services in offer within the hotel industry. For instance, a new information system may mean well for the existing services but it also provides a large sense of visibility for the hotel thus exposing it to reviews. A hotel establishment that has not considered this scenario may end up receiving poor reviews and therefore a reduction in sales volume against an anticipated rise. According to Chathoth (2007), modern hotels offer a wide range of services under different packages thus calling for the need for an integrative information system. Perhaps the biggest and most basic service in the hotel industry is the provision of accommodation. The effects of an information system on this service may include better management of bookings and accommodations. In addition, a good information system should be able to take stock of the available resources within a certain time thus increasing efficiency and effectiveness in room allocations.

The implementation of any information system should also anticipate impacts on the service of restaurants and bars. Indeed, hotels have over the recent past increased their revenue streams from increased exploitation of restaurant services. Even customers that thrive into hotels for accommodation end up spending some time in the restaurants and bars. Unlike in the past, modern hotels are all encompassing, providing for almost all services to their customers. As such information systems are normally complicated and combine a wide range of tasks to cater for all the services included in the hotel menu. Specifically, information systems have the effect of positively managing the handling of orders and deliveries thus minimizing chances of misplaced orders (O’Connor & Murphy, 2014). The overall effect is that customers are more satisfied thus translating into higher sales revenue from the service. In addition, an information system designed for a hotel should be able to link all the different departments together thus harmonizing operations and the general performance of the hotel. For instance, the finance manager should be able to access reports on sales from all the different departments catering for the provision of different services.

It is a common practice of modern hotels to operate night clubs and offer conference facilities to their customers. In view of this development, managers and decision makers should consider the possible effects of any information system on this specific service. The use of an information system has the benefit of saving time thus offering an opportunity for the staff to provide better services to the customers. By digitizing tasks in the offering of services, an information system manages to eliminate manual tasks that may be time consuming (Law & Jogaratnam, 2005). Further, it improves the organization of the hotel through a reduction of the time that staff members take behind the front desks. With respect to the provision of conference services, a hotel may benefit from a robust information system through customer satisfaction. The provision of free wireless network during conferences may sway customers to holding their conferences within the hotel establishment. In the end, the hotel benefits through improved sales volume that translates from higher customer satisfaction rates.

Effects of PMS on Hospitality organizations

The integration of an information technology infrastructure often requires the implementation of a property management system. The property management system is responsible for the coordination of the operations between the different functions and departments. As such, considerations should be made on the effects of the property managements system on the hospitality industry in general. Although the technology is efficient in improving performance and streamlining operations, it may also disrupt operations thus confusing the staff members. Adequate preparations should be initiated to ensure a smooth transition from the existing routines and practices. Perhaps the largest effect on the hospitality industry would be the enhancement of flexibility and accessibility since managers can access the system from any location (Ham, Kim & Jeong, 2005). By providing a cloud based model of management, the system allows for managers to adjust rates and monitor reservations regularly. In addition, the system affects the industry through increased accessibility since managers can review performances of individuals and departments from any location. The property management systems further affects the safety and security of the hospitality industry by limiting access of important data to the management.

Still, a property management system is vital in the running of the hospitality industry as it helps in the enhancement of efficiency in operations. For instance, multiple users can access the system simultaneously from different locations thus saving on time. Traditionally, record users would have to wait for one user to finish going through a file before it is brought to them. The use of technology has for a long time been associated with saving of time as different functions are harmonized. The effect of having an efficient property management system is well felt in the saving of time thus creating more chances for the industry to better serve the customers. Through such avenues, the hospitality industry has witnessed continued growth as more customers embrace the concept of hotels for pleasure and travel. The integration of a property management system has the benefit of eliminating timely routines and tasks including the organization of paper work and the use of different systems (Chathoth, 2007). In so doing, the system harmonizes operations within the hospitality industry and reduces the overall time used by staff members to manage operations. The automatuion associated with the system has the effect of streamlining and simplifying workflows thus availing more time to build better relationships with the customers.

The hospitality industry is also affected by the property management system through cost reductions in operations. In fact, cost saving is one of the primary benefits of having an efficient property management system. Indeed, the system has the potential of improving work output and minimizing the effort used in attaining that output. The benefits of cost reductions are evidenced in better financial performance through increased profitability and revenue generation. By having one system to coordinate all operations in the industry, costs are saved that would have otherwise been used to purchase multiple systems for each department. Further, a comprehensive property managements system eliminates the costs of technical support as well as software and hardware upgrades by limiting the number of systems in operation. The use of this technology is also important in increasing booking capabilities while banking on commission free-reservations captured through the hotel’s website (Wei et al, 2011). This situation has the effect of reducing the overall costs of production while maximizing the income from reservations and bookings by doing away with middle men and brokers.

Economic Impacts of IT on operations

A realization of the benefits of information technology requires that the hospitality industry selects systems that are designed to meet the different operational needs. In particular any benefits to the hotel industry must be quantifiable in economic terms to make sensible gains. One of the key roles of information technology in the hotel industry is marketing and distribution of products through bookings and reservations. The internet, for instance, provides an affordable platform for hotels to market their products to millions of potential customers with ease. By using information technology to link the different departments and functions, hotels can adequately reduce the cost of delivering these services to the customers. Indeed, the internet is the cheapest platform of advertising and marketing as it contains a huge audience that is largely untapped (Ham, Kim & Jeong, 2005). In addition, having a reservation system on the hotel’s website saves the cost of delivering the services as it eliminates middle men and thus reducing the commission granted to third parties on reservations. Ultimately, the use of an efficient information technology system has the potential of greatly reducing the costs of delivering services to the customers.

The use of information technology is also economically viable as it helps in the coordination of different functions through better communications. Different users can communicate with each other through emails and chats thus saving the costs of telephone services. In addition, the use of information technology supports a hotel’s communication with external players including customers, suppliers and agents. The option of teleconferencing also reduces the costs of having board meetings to the benefit of the hotels. Further, the use of information technology systems in room management provides updated information on the status of different rooms (Wei et al, 2011). The efficiency of the system requires minimal staff thus saving on hotel costs through increased staff efficiency and performance. The integration of duties and their management through a single system can also lead to potential cost savings bas operations are handled simultaneously. In the long run, the use of a robust information technology system poses immense economic benefits to the operations of the hotel industry.

It is no doubt that the use of information technology systems in the hotel industry has resulted into huge economic gains. Going forward, the institutionalization of the system into the operations of the hotel has the potential of doubling the economic gains through improved service delivery. The integration of communication technologies and computers provide a platform through which hotels can manage both internal and external operations. The benefit of such an arrangement is that it provides economic gains through the harmonization of operations ad improvement of efficiency. The digitization of tasks through the use of information technology systems presents the hotel with an opportunity to reduce costs of service delivery (O’Connor & Murphy, 2014). In part, the use of a technology information system contributes to a reduction in the number of staff members thus generating more profit for the organization. Further, the management and handling of orders and bookings is integrated into the system thus increasing the efficiency and effectiveness while maintaining satisfied customers. All these gains have economic benefits on the operations of the hotel industry.


The use of information technology systems in the hospitality industry is highly welcome in today’s dynamic world. Indeed, information systems affect the daily workings of the hospitality industry with applications in diverse operations and functions. Partly, the use of these systems helps in the improvement of efficiency and accessibility thus providing players with an opportunity to serve their customers. By reducing time used on manual tasks, the systems also increase efficiency while maximizing output. The use of a property management system is also influential in the integration of different functions within a hotel thus improving the customer experience. Ultimately, the gains accrued from the use of a comprehensive information technology system translate to economic benefits for the different establishments. Evidently, therefore, the hospitality industry must appreciate ad understand the increasing role of information technology in the management and coordination of different functions and operations.




Chathoth, P. K. (2007). The impact of information technology on hotel operations, service management and transaction costs: A conceptual framework for full-service hotel firms. International Journal of Hospitality Management, 26(2), 395-408.

Ham, S., Kim, W. G., & Jeong, S. (2005). Effect of information technology on performance in upscale hotels. International Journal of Hospitality Management, 24(2), 281-294.

Law, R., & Jogaratnam, G. (2005). A study of hotel information technology applications. International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, 17(2), 170-180.

O’Connor, P., & Murphy, J. (2014). Research on information technology in the hospitality industry. International Journal of Hospitality Management, 23(5), 473-484.

Wei, S., Ruys, H. F., van Hoof, H. B., & Combrink, T. E. (2011). Uses of the Internet in the global hotel industry. Journal of Business Research, 54(3), 235-241.



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