The Difference Between Triggers & Automations

This is a glimpse into what you’ll learn about in the eBook: Triggers and Automations to Create Profitability and Efficiency. Download it here. 

When running a Vacation Rental Management Company (VRMC) one of the main goals is to run efficient operations and guest services that exceed the guests expectations. The answer to this? Triggers and automations in your Property Management System (PMS).  VRMB recently released the Evolution of The Modern Vacation Rental Manager which has 3 sections expressing PMS feature importance after interviewing thousands of property managers. 

In Section 1 they have taken features and their importance contingent on the size and growth of the VRMC. As you can see below System Automation shows as close to a 1 on a scale from 0 to 1 of importance regardless of the VRMC size. 



Taking it a step further, in Section 2 – The Co-Importance of Features, system automations provide the hottest spots on the matrix. 



But what are System Automations and how can your VRMC and PMS utilize them? Well you’ve come to the right place to ask. There are over thousands of different combinations that triggers and automations can be utilized when running a Property Management operation so we are just going to start with the basics of defining them, giving one example, then supplying you with an in depth ebook to explain how to gain better efficiency and profitability through system automations. 

What is an Event?

When we are discussing triggers and automations, we will refer to an event often. Each trigger and automation requires an event to happen which will begin the process of a trigger or automation taking place. Events can include an action taken by the guest, a partner, or an employee. 

Examples of Events: 

  • Reservation is Made
  • Guest Checks In/Out
  • Payment is Made
  • Door Code Being Generated
  • X Amount of Days a Unit being Vacant
  • A guest is at mid stay
  • Housekeeping is done
  • A Survey is Completed 
  • A Reservation is Changed

As you can imagine, the list goes on and on. This is just a few examples so you can understand what we are referring to.

What is a Task? 

Task is another word you will hear throughout the automations and triggers process. A task is the action that is taken due to the event occurring.

Here are a few examples of tasks that can be performed:

  • Send an email
  • Send a survey
  • Send a lock code via text message
  • Create work order for maintenance
  • Create Housekeeping work order
  • Send a mid stay text check-in

Again, these are just a few examples of what the follow-up task to an event can be. 

Defining Automations 

During a time that social distancing is important, providing guest communications and actions with little to no physical touch but high personal touch is important. An Automation is a task that is set up to happen pre or post an event. 

An example of an automation using one of each the above Events and Tasks would be:

30 days prior to a check-in send an email with the remaining due balance for the guest.


An email gently reminding the guest about a payment with little to no manual operations on your end. 


Defining Triggers

A trigger is similar to an automation, but it happens exactly simultaneously on the event. A trigger is an ‘if’ and ‘then’ statement.


An example of this from the two above lists would include:


If the door code is generated by a smart home automation partner then send the door code to the guest via text message.


This allows your lock or smart home automation partner to create the door code, sync it to your PMS, then automatically get it in the hands of the guest prior to their check in. This helps avoid any front desk communication and promotes social distancing.


If you want to learn more about triggers specifically, please view our TRACK help desk article here. 

What’s Next?

Triggers and Automations allow your VRMC team to create relationships with guests with little to no physical touch, but high personal touch which is extremely important with the current situation. With that being said, we have created an ebook for you to learn how to create profitability and efficiency through Automations and Triggers. Download it here

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