Revenue management has become an expert specialism, and hotel schools could do more to equip their students with its foundations; so said the panellists discussing the topic, “Boosting Profitability – Successful Revenue Management” at the 2017 Qatar Hospitality Summit.
Nicholas Chalmers, general manager of Tivoli Al Najada Doha Hotel and Oaks Al Najada Doha, said: “The position of revenue manager has been elevated hugely in recent years. It was a dark science not particularly understood, but it is now a different skillset to what was sat in hospitality previously.
“Director of revenue is a specialist role that requires a specialist person with commercial acumen.”
Robert Jeans, director of sales and revenue for Premier Inn International, agreed: “I’d be looking for an economist – someone with a financial background who understood the impacts of the market.
Revenue managers used to come from the reservations team, noted Sushil Sharma, general manager, Fraser Suites West Bay Doha. “But the person has to have the skills to strategise – to see what is happening and what can we do to maximise business. The role is critical to our success.”
Sharma added that not enough is being done by hotel schools yet on the subject of revenue management. “There is not a specialisation in revenue management – that’s a potential opportunity that the industry can support.
“Revenue management should be taught and experienced very early in our careers. A lot of students come out of [hotel] schools with no understanding of revenue management, but they have the aptitude for revenue management. These schools are missing out on a big opportunity to make a big different to students and to the industry.
“Because I can tell you that [revenue management] is a very challenging position to fill.”