Do hotel managers have sufficient financial skills to help them manage their areas?
Purpose – The purpose of this article is to investigate whether managers in hotels have sufficient financial skills to help them effectively manage their areas, within the context of a changing industry. Design/methodology/approach – Additional findings from a series of recent research projects amongst hospitality financial controllers have been utilized to give an alternative viewpoint to those found from literature. Findings – A review of literature identified a strong need for managers to have financial skills, but there is little recent evidence as to whether they actually hold these skills. Hotels are changing fast with pressure to maintain profits resulting in new approaches to management, but there is concern that the development of systems has meant an over-reliance on these to control costs. Financial controllers consider that departmental and general managers do not have enough business skills – and finance skills in particular – to optimize costs and revenues and hence maintain profits. Research limitations/implications – The findings were based on a fairly small sample of respondents, utilizing projects designed for alternative purposes. However, the findings raise questions as to the trust that hotel companies have placed in their systems and approaches. Practical implications – If the concerns expressed by controllers are not addressed by hotels, then inevitably standards of control will suffer, costs will rise and hence profitability will be negatively affected Originality/value – There has been little recent consideration of the realities and the impact of systems changes on management, the majority of earlier projects considering the need for skills rather than the actual possession of these amongst managers