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HOST: Last month, Automated Back Office Briefings previewed some of our market research on the benefits of automated group billing. The research, which took a close look at time saved and errors reduced, is published in our latest white paper, Creating Opportunity Amidst Group Billing Chaos. You can now access the paper at www.eventionllc.com/automated-insights.
The paper describes in detail how group billing automation sets a hotel’s accounting operation’s up for success despite the intricacies of billing group events. To elaborate on our final findings in the white paper, I’ve brought Marie Davis, Group Billing Manager, back on the show. Hi, Marie.
MARIE: Hi, Claire. Good to be back.
HOST: Great to be with you again to continue our discussion on Evention’s latest white paper. The paper’s topic, billing a group, is a complicated one and multi-faceted so it deserves more than one podcast.
MARIE: Definitely, particularly as hotels navigate how to best bolster their operations as we come out of COVID and into what’s expected to be a booming economy and to better position themselves for circumstances like we experienced in the spring, when hospitality had to pivot so many of their group events.
HOST: While we collaborated on this paper, you really led the research and data gathering with this project. Talk to us about what you found.
MARIE: My research subject was a global luxury hotel brand with a consolidated billing service team. However, the findings here can really apply to any property or hotel brand’s group billing operations.
Before implementation this brand had scattered data storage and relied on manual data extracts. This often resulted in missed consumption estimates and high risk of financial loss due to over-consumed or under-consumed business
HOST: Right, and this would oftentimes not only directly affect operations stability, but client satisfaction as well. So, in other words, the chaos that occurred amidst the brand’s group billing operations in the back office, negatively impacted front-facing, front office operations.
MARIE: That’s exactly right.
HOST: After the brand implemented automation into their group billing process, allowing for data from all source systems to be managed by a single application, what did they find?
MARIE: So, this allowed the brand to have complete visibility into the planned performance of a group – even for changes up to and after guest arrival. Because this allowed for Operations and Billing Teams to communicate uncovered balances before group arrival, financial losses were mitigated, the brand’s divisions aligned on expected consumption, and the brand was also able to set up post-department collection to facilitate timely closure.
HOST: Thanks again for coming on again, Marie.
HOST: And to wrap up this episode, we’ve invited our Eventioneer of the Month, Sylvia Murphy, a Software Developer who joined Evention this summer.
HOST: Hi Sylvia – thanks so much for coming on.
SYLVIA: Great to be here!
HOST: What do you like best about working at Evention?
SYLVIA: It’s great to work with people who believe in the company, the products, and each other.
HOST: How do you spend your time when you are not in the office?
SYLVIA: I like to run, knit, and play video games. As the world re-opens, I look forward to traveling and visiting new breweries.
HOST: Fun Fact?
SYLVIA: So, I’m Swiss and American, and growing up, I split my time between two hometowns that smell amazing. My hometown in Kentucky is flanked by bourbon distilleries and my hometown in Switzerland has a cookie factory and a nearby chocolate factory. Bonus fun fact is that the chocolate factory recently experienced a ventilation malfunction and it snowed cocoa at my mom’s house!
HOST: Thanks again, Sylvia for coming on!
SYLVIA. Thanks for having me.
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