Levelling up short-term rental management with tech
With the company’s co-founders, Chregan O’Flynn and Max Urban having backgrounds in tech, they saw that most short-term rental operators utilised off-the-shelf software applications to cobble together a working property management system. The problem with this is that hosts need to find workarounds to stitch these disjointed pieces together which then impacts the guest experience.
It is for this reason that the Propr team developed their own property management system. “The goal,” says O’Flynn, “has always been to automate those elements that can be automated and give our team tools to make them superhumanly more effective, resulting in a better guest experience. This is vital as a happy guest leaves a good review, which leads to more bookings, meaning happier property owners who trust us with their properties.”
Digital solutions transform market challenges
To tackle the issue of housekeeping management, Propr developed an app to remotely monitor and manage cleaning in real time using input and images from the housekeepers to ensure that the standards pre-set for each rental unit are met. “In the past, housekeepers would have to cross off cleaning checklists manually, but now the process has been simplified and made customisable for each property,” shares Urban.
Regarding noise control, he explains that guests are typically on holiday or in town on business and can be loud. “This can cause issues as neighbours sometimes complain. We make use of technology integrated with noise monitoring sensors to send automated and instant notifications to the guests as well as to the owner to alert them to any breaches in noise levels.”
As there are fluctuating variables when it comes to pricing a property, Propr has developed an automated real-time pricing algorithm. Urban points out that this creates a set price point for each property every month that is adjusted daily according to the market.
When it comes to personalisation, one of the ways that Propr has managed to get the balance right is by automating highly structured communication to give their team more opportunity to spend quality time with guests such as when planning a custom itinerary. “We also use tech to flag certain key words like ‘anniversary’ or ‘birthday’ and then notify our guest experience team to do something special for that guest,” notes O’Flynn.
The future of hospitality is tech enabled
Going forward, the entrepreneurs will be developing even more top-line tech tools to meet the needs of tomorrow’s travellers and short-term rental owners. “The key is to use tech in a way that adds to the guests’ experience, rather than making them feel that they are dealing with robots. At every step of the journey, tech can help make the experience better,” concludes Urban.
Propr is a short-term rental management company operating 500+ properties (including two aparthotels) across Cape Town, Johannesburg and Dubai. The company is Marriott-approved and has partnered with them on their Homes & Villas division. Propr is also the only management company in MEA with a direct API partnership with Airbnb. For more information, go to https://www.Propr.co.za and https://www.SuperSight.io