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Pros & Cons of Preno: Analysis of a Smart Hotel Management Software

What are the pros and cons of Preno?
The pros and cons of Preno are demonstrated by its ease of use and powerful features that simplify the daily operations and management of small and medium-sized accommodation providers (e.g. boutique hotels). It integrates with a leading accounting solution and online travel agencies via leading channel managers such as STAAH & SiteMinder. While Preno may have limited customization capabilities, it offers the essential tools to aid accommodation SMEs in creating a great customer experience.

The disconnect between front and back-office departments in the accommodation industry can trigger a chain of issues that can ruin the customer experience. If the front desk, back office, and support teams are not in sync with real-time issues such as double bookings, inaccurate reservation and/or client information, housekeeping schedules, and other important detail – issues can arise. This not only affects the smooth operations of your business but also the quality of service provided to your customers. In order to bridge this disconnect, hotels and other accommodation providers employ the help of software solutions like Preno, a seamless, cloud-based application.

In this article, we will examine the pros and cons of Preno. In this way, you can make a more informed decision as you determine whether it is the ideal hotel management solution for your business.

pros and cons of Preno

The hospitality industry was hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic when travel bans, social distancing, and home quarantining rules were put in place. As tourism sets on gradually recovering a year later, hotel and lodging businesses find themselves in the uncharted territory of reopening and acclimating to the post-COVID era, which has stripped the hotel industry of 10 years’ worth of employment growth.

Aside from following government-mandated regulations, hotels and lodging accommodations also have to re-evaluate how they can get back on track. On the other hand, the public’s opinion on how hotels can make them feel comfortable focuses on sanitation and being as contactless as possible.

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How to Improve Customer Comfort Levels in Hotels

Post-COVID-19 Public Opinion, May 2020

How to Improve Customer Comfort Levels in Hotels
Increase frequency of cleaning and disinfecting procedures: 60

Increase frequency of cleaning and disinfecting procedures

%
How to Improve Customer Comfort Levels in Hotels
Arrange guest areas/public spaces for social distancing: 39

Arrange guest areas/public spaces for social distancing

%
How to Improve Customer Comfort Levels in Hotels
Contactless payment: 35

Contactless payment

%
How to Improve Customer Comfort Levels in Hotels
Temperature checks of guests entering the property: 33

Temperature checks of guests entering the property

%
How to Improve Customer Comfort Levels in Hotels
Room keys/locks activated by a smartphone: 26

Room keys/locks activated by a smartphone

%
How to Improve Customer Comfort Levels in Hotels
Self-service check-in via kiosk: 23

Self-service check-in via kiosk

%
How to Improve Customer Comfort Levels in Hotels
Digital messaging services to avoid physical contact with staff: 20

Digital messaging services to avoid physical contact with staff

%
How to Improve Customer Comfort Levels in Hotels
More frequent communication of policies and procedures: 20

More frequent communication of policies and procedures

%
How to Improve Customer Comfort Levels in Hotels
Expanded room service options: 20

Expanded room service options

%

Source: Statista; eMarketer

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In order to make contactless operations work, hotels and accommodation providers have to explore this category of specialized technologies. And this is where hotel management solutions such as Preno come into play.

What is Preno?

preno dashboard

 

Preno is a cloud-based hotel management software created to seamlessly merge the front and back-office departments, in order to avoid data mishandling and provide customers with the best experience. Designed for small to medium-sized hotel and lodging businesses, Preno is easy to use and simple to navigate. Despite its simple and straightforward interface, it comes with powerful features and integrations that help streamline your hotel business operations.

By using Preno, you can manage online bookings either for individual clients or groups right at your fingertips. Preno’s dashboard gives you a clear view of all the necessary details – from check-ins, real-time list of available rooms, upcoming and previous bookings, unpaid invoices, and even returning guests. The drag-and-drop function also allows you to move information with ease on your dashboard, which is helpful during planning, scheduling, making sudden changes to bookings and services, and more.

In terms of third-party integrations, Preno’s capability to integrate with STAAH automatically connects you to channel managers and opens your business to online bookings. Preno also integrates with leading accounting solutions like Xero, which help simplify and automate your accounting processes, including client billing and payments.

Key Features of Preno

  • Check-in/Check-out
  • Bill to room
  • Booking management
  • Guest profiles
  • Integrated payments
  • Xero integration
  • Auto emails
  • Channel Manager integration
  • Insightful reporting
  • Rates management
  • Agent commissions
  • Housekeeping management
  • Knowledge base
  • Support network
  • Data migration
  • Role-based access

Pros and Cons of Preno

Just like other hotel management and property management software systems, Preno has both its advantages and disadvantages. Let’s take a closer look at the pros and cons of Preno.

1. At-a-Glance Dashboard

Preno is designed seamlessly, which makes it easy to use.It shows on the main dashboard where you can have access to all key booking information, arranged neatly on one page. The details in the main dashboard include check-ins, group bookings, returning guests, and unpaid invoices presented in flexible grids. You can easily switch views and see the drilled down details of each grid, such as the clients, the type of room they booked, date of the booking, their ongoing bill, when are they going to check out, and more.

The main dashboard also gives you access to bookings from as far as two weeks ago and two weeks ahead. With access to future bookings, you can plan ahead and prepare how you can create a better experience for your customers.

Preno dashboard

Preno offers a simple interface for a fast and easy process of checking in new or returning guests.

2. Personalized Guest Profiles

In order to provide a better, more personalised experience for your guests, Preno allows you to build comprehensive guest profiles where you can save their preferences. The information you can add to your guest profiles includes the rooms they prefer, their favorite coffee, the amenities they like to use, and more. You can also save your guests’ payment information for a faster checkout process, as well as fast check-ins if they become one of your returning guests.

3. POS Integration

Preno integrates seamlessly with POS software, such as Lightspeed Kounta POS. This integration gives your guests the capability to use services or make purchases without paying for them in real-time. All charges are automatically added to their total bill in Preno and will be paid at the check-out.

4. Automated Invoicing via Xero Integration

Made possible by Preno’s integration with accounting software systems like Xero, you no longer have to rely on manual, time-consuming invoicing. All invoices are automatically generated in Xero with all the charges itemized down to the type of purchase or service rendered, quantity, unit price, total amount, agent commission (if applicable), and more.

Prepayments, such as early deposits, are also automatically added to the guest’s invoice in Xero. Furthermore, Xero will also be responsible for simplifying your internal accounting and non-guest-related billings, such as processing agent commission and housekeeping payments.

Preno dashboard for integrations

Preno can be integrated with accounting software, payment gateway, and other key apps.

5. Channel Manager Integration

Open your business to a bigger pool of clients online by integrating with channel managers like STAAH and SiteMinder. With STAAH alone, you can gain access to more than 100 online travel agencies where your accommodation services will be seen by thousands of possible clients from all over the world.

6. Auto-Send Email Updates

Part of providing your clients with good customer service is keeping them informed about their reservations and other transactions. Manually, this can be both time-consuming and you may miss out on sending updates to some guests, especially if you have an overwhelming number of clients. Preno addresses this concern by automatically sending emails to clients to confirm their booking details. Automated  emails also include thank-you notes, which you can personalize.

Preno dashboard for booking confirmation

You can schedule the emails sent to guests using Preno’s auto-email feature.

7. Automatic Rates Adjustment

Your room and service rates can be adjusted automatically once you are able to define the rules that can trigger rate adjustments. Rules can include rate adjustment for guests with children under a certain age, splitting beds, additional pillows, etc.

8. Flexible Payment Options

Preno integrates with payment gateway solutions like Stripe and Braintree. This not only gives your guests options but also ensures that their payment details are secured and makes the payment process as contactless as possible.

9. Agent Commissions

Preno can process agent commissions by importing agent information directly from Xero. Commissions are automatically calculated and you can easily create an invoice for your agent that reflects their commission percentage and exact amount as well as how much you will make after the agent commission is deducted.

You can also incentivize your best-performing agents as Preno keeps track of their records. All significant details related to the agents’ performance can be reviewed at a glance, so you will know who deserves to be rewarded for their hard work. In this way, you do not only keep a healthy relationship with your agents, but you can also increase your bookings by keeping your agents motivated.

Preno agents commission

Preno handles agent commission through its integration with third-party software like Xero.

10. Training and 24/7 Support

Despite being an intuitive and user-friendly hotel management solution, Preno provides its users with free training, so they can start on the right foot and ensure that they will be able to utilize the features they need to the fullest. Preno also offers 24/7 customer support, as well as a knowledge base that you can use as a reference.

11. Import Existing Data and Booking History

If you are transitioning to Preno from an old PMS, you can directly transfer your existing data as well up to three years’ worth of booking history. Future bookings recorded in your old PMS will also be transferred to Preno, so you can save time adding and organizing them manually.

12. Comprehensive Reporting

Preno’s insightful reporting gives you a general overview of your business’ overall performance and quick access to drilled-down details of your key metrics. Generating reports for occupancy, revenue, housekeeping, etc., is also fast and easy, so you can keep track of the specific areas of your business operations, assess performance, identify areas of improvement, and make actionable decisions.

13. Housekeeping Management

Preno lets you keep track of housekeeping status in real-time. Using the app, you can create and delegate tasks to your housekeeping staff, such as cleaning a newly vacated room, sanitizing a specific area, and more. By simply looking at the Preno dashboard, you will know exactly which room is still dirty, is being cleaned, and has been cleaned.

You can also add specific guest requests, including an additional cot or mattress. Some guests may also request a bottle of wine or a basket of snacks in their rooms. The status of these requests also reflects on the dashboard. This way, you will know immediately if they have been fulfilled or if you have to follow up on your staff.

Preno dashboard showing arrivals and departures

Stay updated on housekeeping status to ensure that all the rooms and amenities are ready for your guests.

14. Limited Customization

Preno does not offer many customization options, especially in terms of branding. This feature may have been a nice addition as it can be helpful in the promotional aspect of your business. This, however, does not affect the overall functionality, especially when it comes to creating a personalized experience for the guests. Other essential customizations, such as security access for each role and/or department, are also not affected.

15. Pricing Plans Can Be Costly

Preno’s pricing plans range from $48 USD per month for accommodations with 1-10 rooms; $108 USD per month for up to 20 rooms; and $178 USD per month for hotel and lodging businesses that have 21-50 rooms. While the monthly rates are within a reasonable range, some businesses may find the price to be more expensive. This factor, however, may not be an issue for others. On the other hand, the price might drive some business owners to consider other software solutions that cost less.

A Simple But Powerful Hotel Management Solution for SMEs

Preno is without a doubt one of the best software solutions that can modernize and streamline the operations of accommodation SMEs. While it has its minor limitations, its powerful tools and integrations make the investment well worth it. Lastly, Preno can also be used for property rentals (like Airbnb for instance). You can compare it with our list of best property management software for small businesses to see if your requirements are more aligned with this industry.

Jenny Chang

By Jenny Chang

Jenny Chang is a senior writer specializing in SaaS and B2B software solutions. Her decision to focus on these two industries was spurred by their explosive growth in the last decade, much of it she attributes to the emergence of disruptive technologies and the quick adoption by businesses that were quick to recognize their values to their organizations. She has covered all the major developments in SaaS and B2B software solutions, from the introduction of massive ERPs to small business platforms to help startups on their way to success.

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