Is Your Tech Stacked Against You?
A Deep Dive Into the Webcast
On October 13, 2022, Shelley Warsaw, Partnership Manager at TravelNet Solutions, sat down with Lino Maldonado, President at BeHome247, and Scott Seay, Chief Strategy Officer at VTrips, to discuss the building blocks necessary to scale your vacation rental business. Lino and Scott have led tenured careers in vacation rental management. Both have felt the pains of disparent systems and processes and the gains of collaborating with the right technology to eliminate those everyday issues.
Today, BeHome247 is the only complete operations platform on the market that combines smart device control, housekeeping, maintenance workflows, and guest communications from a single dashboard, and is also a certified Track partner. VTrips maintains the honor of being Track’s first customer and has successfully used the technology of Track and BeHome247 to scale their vacation rental business across 10 US markets and counting.
For 30 minutes, this trio looked under the hood of the vacation rental industry, discussing common pitfalls vacation rental companies, large and small, often make when building their tech stack. One thing is apparent – you need a tech stack. But even more obvious, you need the right tech stack, and it’s not too late to align your technology to your needs, so it’s working for you, not against you.
In case you missed it, these key takeaways will get you on the right track to increase inventory and expand into new markets without adding headaches and increased payroll expenses. Here’s how.
Key Takeaway 1 – Technology is a red ocean. Feed wisely.
Lino put it best, “Going 25+ years back; you didn’t have a lot of tech options. The problem with tech today is that you have too many.”
It’s a consumption-driven world today, and technology is no different. With limitless tech options promising to integrate with your current systems and solve your problems with flashy graphics and boisterous testimonials, you’re swimming in a saturated market, aka a red ocean. Choosing the right technology for your business can be overwhelming from the start. As operators of vacation rental companies, you understand the hardships you’re trying to solve; that’s the easy part. It’s qualifying the right technology that’s the hard part.
As consumers in this red ocean, it’s critical that you don’t chase the shiny lure but rather do your due diligence to qualify the technology. Adding on a bunch of small widgets that solve parts of a problem will make you feel like you’re more efficient, but the problem has likely just moved elsewhere within your process. Look for technology with true integration partners, ideally with systems you already use. If not, the term ‘open API’ is your yellow brick road to integrating your systems with on-the-rise technology in the future.
Take BeHome247 and Track. While some of their features overlap, each provides an obvious benefit to vacation rental companies. Their integration allows them to bring a seamless operations, guest, and property management system to customers like VTrips.
Key Takeaway 2 – All functionality is critical functionality.
When asked for the top two pieces of functionality critical to vacation rental operations, Scott couldn’t pick just two because an effective operations platform is an intricate operations platform, making all functionality critical.
Think of your operations platform as a Rube Goldberg chain reaction, where the perfect execution of each event directly impacts the next event. Failure to space the dominos correctly or align the arch so the marble rolls at the right speed will cause the chain reaction to either stop or spiral out of control. This same concept goes for your operations platform. From guests to housekeeping to maintenance and everything in between, the chain reaction of how you handle and move along these events needs to be perfectly timed, spaced, and executed.
Easy enough, right? With the right technology, it can be. Tech companies like BeHome247 and Track have created quality and consistency for vacation rental companies. Understanding that all functionality is critical, every facet of your business is met with efficiency, automation, and speed so that you can act on a task at the right time, with the right cadence, to the right team.
Key Takeaway 3 – Change is imminent. So be the change.
For tech companies, the word ‘change’ is like a mantra. For almost everyone else, change is scary… and imminent. So instead of running from change, be the change. While providing solutions unparalleled to what’s available today, BeHome247 and Track are not stopping there because they know some new enhancement is right around the corner. During this webinar, Lino took the time to explain how he and his team are always thinking about ways to improve their platform, which derives from customer wants and needs.
“Flexibility on the back end is key,” states Lino. To give customers the technology they want, your technology needs to be flexible enough to change. As vacation rental operators, when evaluating your tech stack, consider which partners are unwilling to budge. Locking in functionality is a sure sign that change is not on the horizon for them, which may have you contemplating a change yourself. Tech companies that use feedback surveys, vote-up structures on functionality trends, and more are great indicators that they’ll serve up some helpful enhancements you never knew you needed until they arrived.
For BeHome247, their methodology is simple: They’re all about putting information at your fingertips, real-time, in a single place, and they work to continue to enhance their platform to do just that.
Key Takeaway 4 – EV Chargers are on the rise.
In addition to enhancing internal systems, vacation rental companies must stay ahead of new amenities and features desired by their guests. One gaining rapid speed is the need for electric vehicle (EV) chargers on site.
While you may think of Tesla when you hear the term ‘electric vehicle,’ almost every major automobile manufacturer offers an EV solution in their lineup of vehicles. And with the rise of electric vehicles on the road came the concept of ‘the last mile’ to their destination: where will they charge up? When BeHome247 and Track realized this, they quickly integrated with OK2Charge, the first fully automated EV charging solution designed for vacation rental properties. Vacation rental companies using these platforms now can provide EV charging onsite, an amenity many guests are taking advantage of.
So, is your tech stacked against you?
Don’t let technology be the pitfall of your vacation rental company. When you have the right tech stack, you’ll find operations become more efficient, and revenue gains are plenty. If you’re implementing new technologies and not seeing one or both of these things happen, that’s the first sign that your tech is stacked against you. Don’t let it be.