In our latest Getting to Know You feature, we meet Paul Sault – Interstate’s Director of Revenue Strategy.
Paul, who has been with Interstate for more than six years, gives us an insight into his role and tells us about his time travelling the world for work.
Tell us about your role and what it involves?
I am responsible for the revenue strategy function within the Interstate International division. This includes responsibility for driving top line profitable revenue management strategies across our hotels in the UK and Western Europe and linking closely with our team in the Russia and CIS region.
I have a team of more than 20 Area Revenue Managers led by Area Revenue Directors, and we provide dedicated strategic and tactical execution support for our hotels. Most Area Revenue Managers will manage up to six hotels across multiple brands. As revenue specialists the team actively engage and collaborate with the wider commercial specialist teams covering marketing, ecommerce and sales to support the planning and execution of strategies for each of their hotels. I see this collaboration as a critical element of our function when delivering the commercial drive in today’s dynamic environment.
I closely link with our central team of data analysts to continue to evolve how we work in this space so that all elements of the business have access to the right data and analytics to drive performance. It is an interesting and exciting part of my role which continues to develop. Over the past 18 months we have made a big investment within the data and analytics landscape. As we work within a complex multi-branded environment this investment was needed so that I can furnish the revenue team with great analytics and tools to support demand optimisation, complementing the brand tools and systems we work with too.
What does a typical day in your role involve?
A typical day will generally involve interacting with my Area Revenue Directors, ensuring that they and their managers have everything they need to support their hotels.
I also monitor performance against forecast, in particular pick up and pace movements against forecast or budget.
I link closely with the Directors of Commercial who work within region to ensure that the functional priorities are aligned with the regions as well as the other functional leads within the Commercial team (VP Sales and Director of Marketing & eCommerce).
Working closely with the Group Distribution Manager I support with key distribution partners such as Booking.com or Expedia, as well as the key brands that we partner with.
What’s your favourite part of your role?
The variety. No two days are the same and a well-thought-out plan needs to be flexible to ensure we are agile enough to drive performance.
I also really enjoy working with the team – they are all highly experienced specialists so listening to them supports us in developing our function and ensuring we are at the forefront of what do.
Finally, I really enjoy working with our brand and distribution partners – these positive relationships are key.
What do you think makes Interstate stand out from the crowd?
Our open culture and values. We truly live by each of those values in all aspects of the business.
We are a fast-paced organisation who are agile and able to adapt quickly to changes in market dynamics. Our focus is always about delivering the best experiences for our guests but also the best return for our owners.
Interstate also stands out because we continue to learn from the diverse experience within the team. And data and insights from our analysts support the agility of the organisation.
Tell us something about you that not everyone knows
I worked internationally for a number of years, including two years living in Prague in the late 90s.
I also worked with Hilton International as part of their pre-opening team, which involved traveling overseas for eight weeks at a time. I experienced many cities in Europe, the Middle East and Asia, as well as the US. This allowed me to experience, understand and learn about lots of different cultures.