Introduction to SC Leads
Note: Leads functionality is available when the Lead>Leads Functionality application parameter is set to Y. This application parameter is displayed when either the OPF_XXX license (SFA in the same schema as the property) or the OPX_SFA license (OXI interface to the SFA property) is active.
To access the OPERA SFA Lead Management features, select the Leads button from the Business Block screen (Business Block>Search). The Leads screen displays the currently existing leads for the booking, if any. The Leads screen is also the starting point for adding new leads, sending and resending leads, editing leads and adding lead notes.
A lead is a request to a hotel on behalf of a client, expressing interest in sleeping rooms and/or function space. It can be considered a "cover letter" that is used to send the same booking details to multiple hotels requesting availability and rates. To enter and send a lead, a business block must first be created. One business block can have multiple leads attached.
The lead includes the details that the receiving property needs in order to make a decision whether to accept or turn down the business being offered. In addition to basic information like the dates of the booking, the budget allocated by the client, and the number of rooms required, the lead may also include Meeting Agenda information (if the booking includes one or more F&B events), and room grid details (if generic room type requirements are available from the client).
A booking is received in a Regional Sales Office with a request for sleeping rooms and / or meeting space for a property of the chain to which the RSO belongs. Or the customers could look for any available hotel of this chain in a certain geographical area or Destination. The RSO staff will enter the booking into their SFA system with an Inquiry status and generate new leads for all properties that fall into the criteria range that the customer has specified. Apart from destination, the request might be for certain property features, or for properties of a certain type.
On pass 1, the SFA system will send the leads with a Pending Lead (PEL) status to all properties that might feasibly be eligible for the piece of business.
Pass 2 will be the reply by the receiving properties back to the SFA system. This reply can get back into the SFA system in any of several ways: by the property informing the SFA staff by phone, fax or email about their availability or rates, or by the properties having access to the Web Lead Reply module. This allows them to open a web-page using a hyperlink (generally included in the email) that will display all lead details and allows the property staff to accept or turn-down the booking directly from this page. Where SFA creates the lead as a record in the receiving property as a DATA Lead, the property can reply to the lead directly through menu option Business Management>Leads.
The SFA system will automatically be updated with the new lead status and lead reply notes, if any have been entered. The two possible reply statuses on pass 2 are Accepted Lead (ACL) or Turned Down Lead (TDL). If TDL is chosen, a reason must be entered. Usually the booking status will be changed at the SFA system once one or several lead replies have been received. The booking either moves into a tentative type status (if at least one lead has been accepted) or into a lost or turndown type status, if all leads are turned down.
Pass 3 in the lead life cycle will be confirmation of the business to one of the properties that have accepted the lead. Generally the SFA staff will inform their client about the different options that have been offered by the accepting properties and ask him to make a choice where the business will go to. Once the client has made his decision, the SFA staff will turn the lead of the selected property to Confirmed Lead (CFL) and that will turn all other accepted leads to Lost Leads (LSL).
From this point onwards the piece of business will usually be turned into a Definite status type at the SFA and handed over for further details to the selected property directly.
Pass 4 is generally considered the update of actual booking figures from the property back to the SFA system after the booking has materialized.