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Driving Operations Efficiency for Your Short-Term Rental Business

You’re 1,000 miles away from your short-term rental property in Reno, NV when you get a call that your guest just walked in on a smelly bathroom and found a layer of crumbs lying in the bed.

A working couple from the Midwest is taking their first vacation in years, but they can’t get the microwave to work and spend restless nights swatting at mosquitoes at your property.

All over the world, guests are discovering that the vacation home they've booked hasn't been cleaned, maintained or checked on in days, weeks, or in some cases - months. And short-term rental managers are turning to quicker and more dependable methods than inbox messaging to keep rental staff ready for action before the next arrival shows up.

According to Ivan Meduri, Key Account Manager for Kigo, one aspect of the short-term rental business that most easily falls into the trap of inefficiencies is operations. Simple operations, like coordinating cleanings, getting cleanings completed on time and seeing to it that turnovers are managed correctly, are the key features property managers need help with - especially from a software that helps them automate the process.

Developing a method to make operations more efficient

Kigo Operations Manager (KOM) is designed to make things a lot more efficient for the typical property manager. The software was created to embody the be-all end-all device for operations software. “At the center of any software development in the short-term rental and property management industries, there should be the idea of making business more efficient,” said Meduri."This allows staff to focus on actually making more money rather than fixing communication issues or getting lost in paperwork.”

KOM represents the most complete operations management software for the short-term rental market. "Our product allows property managers to schedule, manage and ultimately master check-in/out tasks, cleanings and maintenance at their properties," Meduri said.

The driving force behind KOM's inception was to make business run as swiftly as it could. For this reason, developers at Kigo created a Field App specifically to smooth out the communication pipeline between managers and rental staff, ridding the vacation manager of any undue stress.

"KOM includes access to a Field App that allows staff members to interact with the property manager and to communicate how their tasks are being performed," Meduri said. He cited that the app increased the confidence and peace-of-mind of short-term rental companies who needed to make sure all operations were running successfully and smoothly, with the ultimate goal in mind of guaranteeing a great experience for their guests.

Efficiency and time management

"The main issues of running operations in any short-term rental business are mostly related to efficiency and time management," said Meduri. To solve these two challenges, Kigo went to work creating a software that met every aspect of the operational workflow.

“Cleanings have to be completed at high standards and turnovers have to be managed smoothly so that the last stay looks like it never happened.”

Since operational teams needed to communicate quickly and share relevant information at the drop of a hat, KOM developers also built in scheduling features such as turns and a task dashboard as some of the main functionalities that allow property managers to manage operations efficiently.

Success and the average software

Successful technology notwithstanding, operations are sometimes a misunderstood side order on the manager's plate. Increased competition has put pressure on managers to get more bookings, optimize their listings performance or find the right pricing strategy.

"In a way, the competitive nature of this market makes it less important to focus on optimizing the operational workflow - but successful VRMs have understood the importance of efficiency in managing cleanings and making sure turnovers are executed perfectly," Meduri said. "Clearly, technology plays a great role in this context so using a software like KOM should be a no-brainer if they want to be more successful."

Can short-term rental managers master productivity without a good software? According to Meduri, the answer is a definitive 'no'.

"Productivity is linked to optimizing resources and time management. To master these two factors would be nearly impossible without technology." Meduri claimed that certain companies would find it harder to adapt to new systems like KOM and the new logic of its operational workflow, but that automating any part of the short-term rental business will give managers more time to focus on other things, like acquiring new properties, finding a new type of customer in new markets, or adding creative revenue streams.

“At the end of the day, although the learning curve may be steep for some companies, it will be worth the time they invest in learning how to use KOM and to set it up properly.”

Leaving a new legacy in the short-term rental business

The impact of the KOM software on the average property manager and their business will be different for every user. Ultimately, said Meduri, using the right technology and using it well will define a successful business and differentiate it from outdated models.

"Companies who fail to update their processes will have a less competitive advantage and this will drive them out of the market," he said. "As more competition and more agencies are formed every day, the risk of being left out from the market for short-term rental properties is higher than ever."

Learn more about how Kigo Operations Manager can support your business!

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