We get this question all the time: “What are some ways in which we can get our P&L faster?”
And I understand that, you know, you want to have plenty of time to review your P&L before it goes to the bank, and you really want to know, “How did my hotel perform last month?”
Well, there are a few things that need to be addressed and thought of beforehand.
For starters, what’s the biggest limiting factor on your staff accountant, on your accounting team, as it is, to get your P&L ready to go?
When first reviewing this, I thought it was AP close dates. After doing some research and speaking with hoteliers and our staff, it really came down to how fast your accounting team can get the reports it needs. Your accountant, with the hotel on-site or outsourced, needs to have those reports quickly and in the right format so that they can begin working on the end-of-month close quickly.
So here are 3 tips to keep in mind to help speed that process up!
Tip #1: Set a Report Due Date for your hotel.
Have a specific date in which the daily revenue section in your accounting system is current and all end of month reports are sent to your accountant. It is highly encouraged that the 2nd of the month be the due date for the hotel to have these items completed. Not having your daily revenue report current in the accounting system and the period to date reports provided by the 2nd day of the month at the latest is the #1 reason P&L reports get delayed.
Tip #2: Make sure that your hotel has a specific end-of-month report list.
This way your hotel staff is not having to go back and check emails or call to find out what is needed the day following the end of the month. This one tip is a huge time saver when for the team so that they don’t have to ask every single month, “Hey, what reports do we need to ask for? What format were they in?” Instead, there’s a quick and simple checklist of the reports needed and the right format.
Tip #3: Make one person responsible for getting the reports to your accountant!
Have that be their #1 responsibility on the first day of the month for the following month. Example: if it’s May 31st then on June 1 that person's #1 responsibility for the day is to make sure the hotel's accounting daily report is current AND the monthly reports are provided to your hotel accountant.
Note that this does not have to be the General Manager! It could be a front desk supervisor, or an AGM! The goal here is that having one person responsible with a very specific deadline provides a key point person to contact if items are not completed timely. We even see the absolute best hotels incentivize this responsibility by providing gift cards to that individual when all items are completed. The gift cards aren’t given each month but sporadically so that the individual is always on their toes and keeps items up to date and current.
Another way to incentivize is to link the reporting and daily revenue reports to bonuses. Money can be a very persuasive motivator and if a portion of your bonus could be impacted because you didn’t send in your reports or keep your daily report activity current, having your bonus impacted could be a great way to make those two items a priority.
So there you have it!
3 Simple tips to remove the stress of delayed financial statements by getting the needed activity fast to your hotel accountant.
#1: Set a Report Due Date for your accounting systems daily revenue report and when reports are provided to your accountant.
#2: Keep an up to date list of the reports needed with the right format for your hotel.
#3: Make one person responsible for getting the reports to your accountant.
These tips will allow your hotel accountant to provide those financials faster so that you have more time to review with less errors, leading to less stress and anxiety for everyone!