Breezeway, the property operations and service platform for short-term rental and hospitality professionals, has released its second annual Property Operations Report. Data from hundreds of professional vacation rental managers (and travelers) shows that the pandemic has sharpened hospitality’s focus on quality, safety and cleanliness, creating lasting operational changes and influencing tech stack decisions.
71% of vacation rental managers think that high guest expectations for cleaning standards will remain – guests are still more sensitive to property preparation than they were pre-pandemic
73% of managers are addressing guest and property safety in 2021 by conducting routine preventative maintenance – property safety remains a top priority
88% of managers plan on differentiating their business by expanding or optimizing their tech stack – enterprising managers are automating processes to boost their brand and gain a competitive edge
53% of professional managers are using 4 or more software solutions to run their business – building a tech stack is critical to running a successful vacation rental business
Communication with guests and owners was the highest rated pain point for professional managers – managers are realising that it’s not enough to implement more safety checks and cleans or better task scheduling, this has to be communicated to owners and guests to be valuable
Operations tech – essential business tools
Tech adoption in the short-term rental sector has accelerated over the past year and this data illustrates how managers are automating workflows to run a more efficient and profitable business. Managing properties to a high standard and meeting guest expectations has never been more challenging, and managers are prioritising purpose-built tech solutions to deliver the best service for guests and homeowners.
Jeremy Gall, founder and CEO of Breezeway (and former founder of FlipKey), explains why 2021 is the year in which property operations tech comes into its own: “Higher demands from guests and owners have increased the scope and depth of work for hospitality providers. Providers have also gravitated away from one-size-fits-all software toward technologies with more singular focuses and deeper functionalities. This fragmentation – using different tools for different business functions – allows for products with better connectivity and usability.”
The power of communication
In 2020, Breezeway’s report found that 74% of managers planned to adjust their communication strategies in order to reassure guests (during Covid) and to provide more personalized experiences. The 2021 report discovered that communication remains a huge pain point for managers, and one that many are looking to transform in the coming months.
These findings show a clear need for a better way of communicating. In 2021, it’s not enough for managers to provide just high-quality properties, this has to be explained to guests and owners. Operational tech can fill that role, as found by Ashley Kubiszyn of River Ridge Rentals, Breckenridge, Colorado: “Too often our staff had trouble reaching the guest by phone…texting is much easier and more practical. People are used to it. We don’t have to spend time doing phone logs anymore. Guests love it, and say it’s great that we’re so available.”