Understanding Client Types
To understand which Rates to associate with what Client Types, it is important to understand what Client Types are. This article will review Client Types, and the functions they hold in the PMS.
In the PMS, a Client Type essentially acts as a rate filter when booking. Associating a Rate Plan with a Client Type will make that rate bookable when that Client Type is chosen during the booking process.
Generally, if a Rate Plan is not associated with a Client Type, it will not be bookable. There are a few exceptions to this rule, however, when it comes to dealing with Groups and Corporate Rates;
- Corporate Rates that are attached to a Corporate Profile will be associated with a Corporate Client Type by default, even if it is not manually selected.
- Group rates are typically not attached to a Group Client Type on the Rate Plan in the Rate Wizard, but are instead associated with a Group Client Type when building the Group in the Group Wizard. For more information on this, please consult the Groups section of the support page.
To configure Client Types in the PMS, go to System Configuration > Client Types
When looking at the Client Types module we can see how each Client Type is configured, including what Function each one holds.
Using the buttons on the right, we can:
- Create a New Client Type
- Modify an existing Client Type
- Delete a Client Type (can only be done if the Client Type has never been used)
- Activate or Deactivate Client Types (Turn On/Off)
- We can view the Client Type Codes and Names
- Whether they are Active or Inactive
With the black arrow pointing to a Client Type in the top section of the screen, we can view and modify settings in the bottom section. (To make changes to a Client Type, click the Modify button).
- Code - This is the short code for the Client Type
- Name - This is the full name of the Client Type
- Function - This allows the function of the Client Type to be set - Options are: Independent, Corporate, Group/Tour/Convention, Wholesaler, Owner, Owner Guest, and Exchange
- Client Type Grouping (Optional) - This is a free-type text box. The user can create a custom list of Client Type Groupings and then group multiple Client Types into them. For example, this list of Client Types contains Group Coporate and Group Social, which are grouped together under a Client Type Grouping named Group.
- Sort Order - This dictates in what order the Client Types are displayed in the drop-down field when making a new reservation. As a helpful hint, the Client Type that is most commonly used should be set to 1.
- Eres Promo Code - Promo code used for Online Bookings in the legacy version of eRes 2.0. For properties using the current version, eRes Mobile, this feature is no longer relevant.
- Default Room Charge - Allows a default Room Charge to be attached to a Client Type. For example: if all of your Government bookings were tax exempt, then you may choose to create a Client Type called Government, and select a Tax Exempt Room Charge Code as your Default Room Charge Code to attach to it.
- Active - This checkbox indicates whether the Client Type is active or not
- Hide Rate - If this box is checked, the Room Rate will not be displayed on the Guest Confirmation or Registration Card. (This option is available on specific Rate Plans in the Rate Wizard as well).
Using Default Room Charge on a Client Type
When assigning a Default Room Charge such as a Tax Exempt Room Charge to a Client Type, when that Client Type is chosen during the booking process, the Room Charge field will switch to that code.
It is important to note that it is still possible to change the Room Charge code via the drop-down menu during the booking process, even when a Default is set.
Functions of Client Types
Each Client Type in the PMS must have an associated Function. A Client Type's Function will dictate what kind of reservation is being made in the PMS, and will enforce a specific set of rules based on that. Though Client Types themselves can have custom names in the PMS, each one must still hold a specific Function, and the Functions themselves cannot be renamed. It is not unusual for several Client Types to exist, all with the same function. This comes down to specific configuration options based on the types of business a property caters to.
The 7 Client Type Functions are as follows:
- Independent - Does not pull information from any other area in the PMS. Client Types with this function are meant to be used for reservations that are not associated with a Group Block or a Corporate Account/Profile. Essentially this is for individual travelers not booking a Corporate Rate or as part of a Group
- Corporate - Pulls information from the Corporate Module area of the PMS to facilitate attaching a Company Profile. A Company Profile can contain an association to a certain Rate Plan as well as routing instructions or Direct Billing links for Room & Tax. Aside from traditional Corporate Client Types, OTA (Online Travel Agent) Client Types will also have a Corporate function, as the OTA Company Profiles will live in the Corporate Module, and perform similarly to Negotiated Corporate Accounts in the PMS
- Group/Tour/Convention - Pulls information from the Group Module when booking, and allows a reservation to be associated with a specific Group Block. This means that when a group block is active, and a reservation is made using a Group Client Type, the reservation will count towards, and be deducted from the Group Block Inventory
- Wholesaler - Pulls information from the Wholesaler Module. Similarly to the Group/Tour/Convention function, this function allows a reservation to be added to a Wholesaler Block, deducting it from the block when reservations are made
- Owner (Only for use in properties dealing with individually owned units, and our Owner Accounting system) - Any reservations made with this function will be tracked as Owner bookings in Owner Accounting (this function should only be used on the OWN Client Type)
- Owner Guest (Only for use in properties dealing with individually owned units, and our Owner Accounting system) - Any reservations made with this function will be tracked as Owner Guest bookings in Owner Accounting (this function should only be used for the OWNG Client Type)
- Exchange (Only for use in properties dealing with individually owned units, and our Owner Accounting system) - Used for owner exchanges. Example: Owner is not using their unit but is exchanging it with an owner of another unit (at another property) as an exchange
How Client Types Affect the Booking Process
When making a new reservation in the PMS, the first required field is the Client Type. The choice made in this field will dictate what type of reservation is being made, the rates to display, and whether there will be any other required information such as a Corporate Profile or Group Block.
In the example below, we can see that the Leisure Client Type is selected, and that it has an Independent function, as no other information is required. By selecting the Leisure Client Type, the rates attached to that Client Type are displayed.
In this example the Corporate Client Type was chosen, with a function of Corporate. We can now see the Company drop-down box displayed on the right.
By using the Corporate Client Type, we are able to attach an associated Corporate Profile, allowing the PMS to display the proper rates associated with that Corporate Profile.
In this example a Group Client Type was chosen, with a function of Group. We can now see the Group drop-down box displayed on the right.
By using a Group Client Type, we are able to attach the correct Group Block, which allows the PMS to display the correct rates for the specific group being booked.
In this example the Wholesale Client Type was chosen, with a function of Wholesaler. We can now see the Company drop-down box displayed on the right.
By using the Wholesaler Client Type, we are able to attach the correct Wholesaler Block in the Company box, which allows the PMS to display the correct rates.
eRes Client Types
There are two Client Types that are automatically created in the PMS when our eRes Online Booking Engine is made active for a property. These two Client Types have specific uses;
- Online Booking (WEB) - This Client Type is used to send most reservations made through eRes to the PMS.
- Corporate Online Booking (CORPWEB) - This Client Type is used to send Corporate reservations made using the company's Promo code through to the PMS. In the Corporate Profile Module, it is possible to assign a unique Web Access Code to a company. The booker would then be able to enter the Promo code when making a reservation, and eRes would display only the rates for their company. This allows properties to give codes out to their Corporate clients so they can make their own reservations, but still be guaranteed to get their negotiated company rate.
It is important to note that these are the ONLY two Client Types that can be used with eRes, thus when attaching Rate Plans to Client Types under the Hotel Website Rate Type (Channel), one or the other must be used.
- In the below examples, the Best Available Rate is attached to the Online Booking Client Type under the Hotel Website channel, as it is considered an Independent rate.
- The corporate rate for Corsair Yachts is attached to the Corporate Online Booking Client Type because they have a promo code associated with their Corporate Profile, to use when booking online. (When using this Client Type without the promo code, their rate would not be bookable online).