Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 47

 7-MINUTE READING TIME

is the hotel business. Guest service and
colleague engagement in that department you just took over needs your fresh
set of eyes and heart. The numbers need
cleaning up, too, and the great news is
it's not a difficult task to get the numbers
working for you.
If you just inherited a P&L section and
it's a mess, here's what to do:
Make friends with your payroll,
accounts payable and purchasing
people. Show them you are interested
in helping get things right.
Stop the machine when it comes to
the paperwork. Sit down with your
invoices and purchase orders (POs)
and time sheets. Make sure that
your processing lines up with the
proper general ledgers (GLs). Ask your
friends in administration for help.
When it is your turn to submit the
next month's forecast, take the time
to have a deep look at what you are
projecting. Chances are you do not
have the zero-based detail to work
from. This is where you put your stake
in the ground. What is in the expense
accounts and what is the staffing formula for your department?
First, look at the expense accounts.
Most hotels do their budgets on a
cost per room occupied/customer or
a percentage of revenue basis. This
will not help figure out how to control expenses. You need to do some
research. Go to accounts payable
and get the details of the last three
months for each of your accounts.
Get them to run the GL details for
you. Then pull the invoices and see
what items and their corresponding
quantities and prices were expensed
in your area. Make your list. What will
you need next month to operate? How
many of each item and the price? This
work will pay off because you will
see the inefficiency, and what will
emerge is a clear picture of what you
need to run your department. What
should be in your accounts and what
should not?

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actual spend that is wrong because of
timing or changes in the business needs?
Are there items that are miscoded due to
errors in the data or source documents?
Is the alignment of the expenses correct
to the budget and forecast plan?
So, where is the opportunity for the
operations manager?
The opportunity is to become the
leader that sees a problem, owns it and
fixes it. I have seen it happen many
times. Most operations managers are
new in their roles and are interested
in one thing: Getting on their departmental horse and riding. That is one of
the secrets in hospitality. We regularly
"drain the swamp" and give a new leader
a shot at cleaning up the mess. The mess
is always in need of cleaning up. That

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Payroll. You have two parts to master:
fixed and variable. Fixed positions
in your department are the salaried,
non-scheduled employees like yourself. You need to know these positions and their pay and their holiday
and vacation accruals. Next, the variable positions. What is the staffing
formula? If you are running guest
services you need to know the sevenday, 24-hour staffing guide. Arrivals
and departures, bag pulls, rooms in
the house and guest count, both on
their own and in groups. From this
structure, develop your schedule
based on business levels. So many inhouse + so many arrivals + so many
departures = an 8-hour shift. Do the
same for all parts of your day and
week. This is where a fresh set of eyes
can find gold. Redeploying inefficient
labor to need periods and trimming
the sails where possible can net you
big savings.
So, from the chaos, clean up the
swamp, and what emerges is a new and
vastly improved department, including
the service, engagement and financial
piece. You don't want to be the leader
that misses this opportunity.
The second and more elusive opportunity comes from gaining perspective through financial statements.
Everything included in your statement
is there for a reason. It is part of the
statement because it is material to the
mission of effectively running your
department. Get curious and find out
what that information is there for, what
does it mean and how can you learn
from it?
As a leader, your opinion matters.
The hotel business is not a science.
It is art, business and personality all
mixed together. If 10 hotel managers
were asked what they would rather have:
a point of occupancy or $5 in rate and
why, there would be at least 12 different
answers. If asked why your productivity
slipped in the last month in housekeeping, the same dynamic kicks in. What

TODAYSHOTELIER.COM | MARCH 2018 | 47


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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Today's Hotelier - March 2018

Letter From the Chairman
Letter From the President & CEO
#AAHOACON18 Spotlight
Government Affairs & Advocacy
The C-Suite
Common Ground
Elevate Yourself to a Higher Role in the Industry
Next-Level Housekeeping via Technology
Mentoring Matters
Small Business
Finance
Marketing
Technology
Compliance & Legal
Leadership
Guest Experience
Aahoa Founding Members
Classifieds
Advertiser Index
Back of the House
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Intro
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - cover1
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - cover2
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 3
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 4
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 5
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 6
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 7
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 8
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 9
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Letter From the Chairman
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 11
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Letter From the President & CEO
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 13
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - #AAHOACON18 Spotlight
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 15
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 16
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 17
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Government Affairs & Advocacy
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 19
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - The C-Suite
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 21
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Common Ground
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 23
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Elevate Yourself to a Higher Role in the Industry
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 25
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 26
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 27
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Next-Level Housekeeping via Technology
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 29
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 30
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 31
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Mentoring Matters
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 33
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 34
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 35
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Small Business
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 37
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Finance
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 39
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Marketing
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 41
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Technology
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 43
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Compliance & Legal
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 45
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Leadership
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 47
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 48
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 49
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Guest Experience
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 51
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 52
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 53
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Aahoa Founding Members
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 55
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Classifieds
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 57
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 58
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 59
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 60
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 61
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 62
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Advertiser Index
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 64
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - Back of the House
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - 66
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - cover3
Today's Hotelier - March 2018 - cover4
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