When the AAA four diamond Amway Grand Plaza Hotel decided to upgrade their point of sale system, they tapped Toronto based hospitality software company Volante POS Systems to do the job. The result was an extensive hotel POS system installation throughout the property and adjoining convention center, one that is fully customizable to the Amway Grand's current and future needs. The Amway Grand Plaza Hotel installation also adds a new market segment to Volante's growing roster of hospitality POS clients.
In addition to providing restaurant POS terminals to all the food and beverage outlets within the hotel, the installation also includes 12 terminals in the adjoining conference center, The Devos Place. Future plans include expansion into the hotel’s retail operations.
The Amway Grand Plaza Hotel installation marks the first hotel & conference center for Volante. Previous clients have included casinos, stadiums, fine dining and casual/quick serve restaurants, pizza chains, universities and theme parks.
The entire system at the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel is running on a Linux platform. Volante has been built around open standards to keep both costs down and integration seamless.
The Amway Grand Plaza was keen to find a stand-alone hotel POS system that was easily customizable to their diverse needs. A local POS representative who was intrigued with Volante brought the system to their attention. This representative thought that Volante was the perfect solution to the Amway Grand Plaza’s many requirements. After taking a closer look, The Amway Grand Plaza decided that Volante Systems was indeed the hotel POS system that was up to the task.
“Volante brought a lot to the table as far as what it was offering.” Says Todd Krapp, Computer Systems Coordinator for the Amway Grand Plaza. “Volante has a lot of integrated features, whereas other POS systems are kind of a la carte, you have to shop around to find another vendor to do something else for you. We were especially intrigued by the integrated gift card/rewards system that Volante offers. To find a point of sale company that does gift cards is very difficult. We do a lot of gift card business, and to have someone do it out of house, the per-transaction expense becomes quite significant. With Volante, we can manage everything in-house, control it and maintain it.”
"Gift cards have universal appeal regardless of the business," says Annette Ennamorato, VP Sales, Volante Systems. "Anyone in the hospitality industry will benefit from the customer acquisition and retention that a gift card software program can provide."
In addition to gift card/loyalty programs, customer relationship management, and integrated debit and credit capabilities, Volante offers on-demand, real time access to data, and system reliability through a network of peer-to-peer POS terminals, a feature that is unique in the point of sale industry.
Peer-to-peer POS technology means that each terminal runs independently from the main server, and in the case of a system crash, each terminal will continue to operate without any loss of data. In regards to Volante’s peer-to-peer component, Krapp mentions, “It certainly gives me peace of mind. I don’t know if the Outlet Managers fully comprehend that yet, but as far as the network going down, they’re not going to pad and paper in case of a system crash. That’s not a problem anymore.”
Volante also offers a full data reporting suite to aid management in decision-making. The suite is designed to provide a clear insight into all aspects of operations, with data reported by meaningful graphs, all accessed quickly and easily. Tailored summary reports provides users the ability to view only the information they want to see. This means managers spend less time trying to find information and more time managing their business.
“With our former POS system, I was limited as to what I could store and for how long, unless I archived it.” Says Krapp. “Whereas with Volante, that isn’t an issue. I can go back to the beginning when Volante first appeared, and order a check, and have it appear. It’s amazing to be able to do that. With Volante, we’ve quite literally moved into the 21st century.”
The Amway Grand Plaza has lots of praise for Volante’s support system as well. “With Volante, the support side was very good.” Krapp adds. “Even though Volante is in Toronto, and we’re in Grand Rapids, Michigan, the online support that was provided by Volante was excellent. Help was never more than a phone call away, and you could always ask a question. I never felt really alone in the project. There was always a lot of help and support. Working with the Volante team has been a very positive experience.”
Volante is unique from other hotel POS systems in the marketplace today in that when your business evolves, Volante will grow with you. Volante is specifically designed to evolve along with technological advancement. Embedded in the architecture is a small footprint upgrade system. As your business expands and technology advances, this feature allows your system to stay current and take advantage of the latest technology. This ensures your system will not be obsolete and will continue to grow along with the expansion of your business. Krapp explains how this feature benefited the Amway Grand Plaza.
“With Volante, there was a great deal of custom development. Of all the systems I’ve worked with, I doubt that I’ve ever worked with developers so closely to get a more tailored system. It was interesting to work with a POS vendor and actually get development done. Even now, when I call, I’m working closely with developers. Would I experience that with other point of sale companies? I doubt it.”
By partnering with Volante, The Amway Grand Plaza Hotel has found a point of sale system that not only fulfills their POS software requirements, but one that anticipates their needs as well. Much like the commitment The Amway Grand Plaza makes to its guests every day.
About Volante Systems
Since 1993, Volante POS Systems (volantesystems.com) has been providing open standards, point of sale solutions to the hospitality industry. Volante is the perfect software choice for venues requiring a flexible yet comprehensive enterprise POS solution.
About The Amway Grand Plaza Hotel
Located in downtown Grand Rapids Michigan, The Amway Grand Plaza Hotel is a AAA Four Diamond luxury hotel and host to conventions, meetings, special events and weddings; and home to eleven restaurants and lounges in West Michigan. The Amway Grand Plaza is much more than a hotel. It's a true destination.