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RIP to the Hotel PBX – Is your phone system covered in cobwebs? Part One

Moving Past the 10-Year ROI Telco Model 

Times are quickly changing, but never so much as the ongoing advancements in telecommunications. The FCC is taking steps to force carriers to stop selling copper telephone lines/Plain Old Telephone Service (aka POTS), which means the legacy analog copper phone line is being phased out sooner than later. Networks are aging, parts are unavailable, and technicians are retiring.

How does this affect the phone system in your hotel? Depending on what upgrades and advances you have made over the last five years, you may need to switch your PBX systems to a cloud communication platform sooner than later.

Oftentimes, however, it is difficult to see the forest for the trees. Considering the recent upheaval in our industry, the challenges facing hoteliers can be overwhelming. The steady increase in travel as restrictions lift, the ongoing trend of “bleisure” travel as more and more offices shut down and employees are allowed to work from anywhere and the pent-up demand to meet in person are exacerbated by the ongoing staffing shortage. Hoteliers have a lot on their plates and replacing a phone system is likely at the bottom of their list.

However, as technology and infrastructure age out, many properties, management companies, and owner/operators are still purchasing based on outdated 10-year Return on Investment (ROI) requirements. With the speed of today’s technological advances, this way of thinking is also becoming a thing of the past — or should be.

A Demanding Business Model

The hospitality space is much more complicated and more demanding than the enterprise space. For instance, many systems, including communications, must integrate with a hotel’s property management system. Additionally, there is still a lot of legacy equipment and infrastructure in place. We all know that in hospitality, the phone system is the lifeblood of a hotel. Unlike most 9-5 businesses, hotel phones must be answered 24/7/365.

Communicating between guests and the hotel is critical, both on and off the property. We saw that clearly demonstrated during the pandemic as hotels opened their doors to aid in emergency efforts. Additionally, environmental crises or localized violence often make reliable communication with guests tantamount to the fire alarm system in a hotel.

Add in the fact that when deciding on a reliable, forward-looking communication system, hoteliers must consider more options today than in the past. The complicated PBX of yesterday is being phased out as mobile and cloud technologies continue to advance. Unfortunately, as these changes have occurred, piecemeal solutions were developed to bring together the old with the new. This left many hotels with fractured, complicated phone systems that must be managed by any number of vendors.

Want to learn more about how you can save money with today’s best-of-breed communication systems? Contact to learn how you can save money and reduce friction through an end-to-end cloud communication platform.

Read part two here.