This event was as engaging as the two previous iterations, resulting in another profitable day. It was great to see a number of familiar faces in the attendees as well as some new ones. It was also good to see some old reunions that took place between some of them as they arrived – an unexpected bonus to the event.
Hitherto we’d focused on hotel-based revenue management directors but, due to the feedback from previous events, this time we were joined by senior revenue professionals from airline, holiday and car leasing to help the hotel-focused attendees (and the MRK employees) get different views and opinions.
In the morning, we started discussing the needs of the revenue management functions of tomorrow and the skills they need. Across the different industries, this is where we noticed some different thoughts on where the revenue function currently were and where and when they would get to in the future.
Balance requirements with skills
To match hotel requirements with candidate skills, there has to be the balance of analytics and articulation from the candidates – conversing, influencing and negotiating with stakeholders across the hotel is a must as is the ability to read and interpret data to maximise trends. Airlines are quite advanced in many areas with one key focus being on recruitment and succession planning. It helps that most airlines are larger entities so are able to create this through graduate recruitment and career development programs.
Alongside the large hotel groups, the airlines are already relying on psychometric testing to understand the candidate’s analytical abilities and how personable they are. This was a well discussed topic as many of the smaller hotel groups felt adding this testing into the recruitment process in the future may become more and more important and an industry standard.
Current school of thought
The rise and rise of revenue management is noteworthy and is undoubtedly a key barometer in leading performance in hotel environments. The discussion focused on the future of revenue management; the current school of thought is that revenue management will be absorbed into the marketing team at hotels, although it remains to be seen whether this will come to fruition. Revenue Management now sits happily between marketing, sales and finance such is its importance; would absorbing it into another function lessen its strategic input and direction?
After an outstanding three course lunch and then desserts prepared by the gastronomic star, Albert Adrià, the meeting continued – starting with the influence of AI and Systems required for future expansion.
In recent years, revenue management has moved slightly slower in embedding bespoke systems that uplift the competitive nature of the industry and the expectations of senior management. What is required now are bespoke systems – not Excel based – that are easy to read trends, drive reports and influence the pricing matrix in an efficiently and prompt method.
As the end of the day neared, flexible working was discussed and working methodologies shared. More working from home with app-based support to ensure continuity of work to be embraced for the future? It will certainly help professionals be nearer home for family as well as continuing the great work that revenue management teams are delivering day in, day out.
Thank you to Robin Stangroom from Hotel Café Royal for being a wonderful host and the outstanding hospitality.
The next event is already in the planning. If you would like to be part of our roundtable, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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