Revenue Optimization: Driving the Bottom Line

By Sherry Marek

In today’s competitive world, a great management team focuses on optimizing revenue in every department — including rooms, spa, ski, golf, ticketing, food and beverage, and retail. Where is the additional revenue going to come from? You need to track the success of upselling, promotions, cover charges and more. In addition to maximizing revenue, it is also crucial to control costs, from monitoring fixed expenses to labor costs. At the end of the day, accurately tracking data throughout all areas is a necessity.

Join HFTP at the Annual Convention on Thursday, Oct. 26 to hear Justin Pridon speak on Optimizing Revenue Through Data, the goal being to improve the bottom line. Justin Pridon gives this overview of the session:

The main goal of the session is to provide a guide to help any operator understand the vital role that proper data governance has in maximizing bottom line profits. Overall, the best way to help describe this is to focus on how data can be transformative in its many phases with emphasis on collection, organization and final analysis. Ask yourself what success is, and the many ways it can look like before following output blindly.

The following topics will be covered:

Data Collection: “Data Hungry”

It is hard to think of any necessarily bad data to collect, or what a team shouldn’t consider “tracking.” If basic data is performance from POS units at the site, then forward-thinking data collection is understanding the many attributes that help explain what is going on inside that information. Some of the most important insights can be gleaned from combining core data sets with the right ancillary data to recognize the difference between trends and abnormalities. Additionally, performance data is not just limited to total sales. The importance of unlocking and understanding the detail involved in your sales data cannot be overstated.

Data Connections: “Data Smart”

Collection is only as good as connections. Understanding the questions you want to ask of the data is vital in understanding how to structure your data to provide insights. Being “data smart” involves collecting the data in a way that makes analysis straightforward. Focus on how the data (especially performance data) connects between multiple sets to ensure efficiency.

Data Transformations

You’ve invested in data collection. You’ve considered data structure. So, where do you go now? Using data to be transformative, especially to bottom line profits, is no easy task. In many cases, these data steps never go beyond simple “reporting.” Transaction-level data can be particularly enlightening, providing objective insight on actual consumer purchase behavior. Additionally, understanding connections in the data can provide greater insight into the true drivers of guest purchase behavior.

Qualitative Data: “Where Data Stops”

Having an objective data set is vital to good business decisions, but so is understanding how to interpret that data. No good system is simply a “black box.” Transparency in data underlies the importance of an established business strategy. Ask yourself what success is and the many different ways it can look before following output blindly.

Understanding, reviewing and analyzing your data is an ongoing process for your company. You cannot resolve all the issues or answer all the questions on day one. The process can be compared to a train. You start with an engine and a few “data” cars, and travel from point A to point B. This is Phase I. If you add more “data” cars, you need to add more engines to travel from point B to point C. This is Phase II. You need to periodically perform maintenance on the engine. You make sure the data in the cars are as clean as possible, or you introduce a process to clean it more thoroughly. As you add more data, you add more horsepower, continuing the cycle of data growth.

Is there value in collecting data manually? Of course! Do you know who your guests are at the bar? How many come in after work? How many are on vacation? How many are staying at your hotel if you have rooms at your location? Most likely, a good bartender or wait staff will know the background of most guests in a bar. If you need to understand your business mix, engage our frontline team to help you translate this into percentages. Then, you can create a marketing plan based on your defined goals.

Ready to start your “data” engines?!  I look forward to you joining us at the HFTP Annual Convention and hearing more about “optimizing revenue.” Learn or reinforce some concepts in collecting and analyzing data. It’s always good to take home some “golden nuggets” and ideas from industry examples to share with your team. Let’s optimize revenue!

Here are a few keywords that are good to know:

  • ETL- Extract, Transform and Load. This term relates to the process of extracting data from a source system, transforming, and perhaps cleansing some data points, and then loading it into an analysis tool like a data warehouse or BI system.
  • Data Governance. This is the overall management of the availability, usability, integrity and security of data used in an enterprise. A sound data governance program includes a governing body or council, a defined set of procedures, and a plan to execute those procedures.

Sherry Marek is a passionate advocate of helping the hospitality industry make informed and data-enabled decisions to streamline operations. She co-founded Datavision Technologies in 1996 with the goal of bringing broad-spectrum business intelligence to all key areas of hospitality operations. Sherry is a director on the HFTP Global Board and a speaker at the upcoming 2017 HFTP Annual Convention (#HFTP65) on October 25-27 at the Omni Orlando Resort at ChampionsGate in Florida.

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