Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Revenue Management Is A Sign Of Success

Nitty-gritty of Revenue Management

Revenue management first noticed and accepted by the airline industry. Many travel and hospitality companies have been focused to the "adapt or perish" hymn while moving towards revenue management. Today, revenue management processes and systems are implemented in number of industries, including manufacturing, advertising, energy, hi-tech, telecommunications, car rental, cruise line, railroad and retail. In the future, companies that ignore revenue management will be at a serious disadvantage.

Actually, revenue management is the concept of adopting the number of implementation of emerging and changing business strategy to revenue management, where you can generate additional revenue from 3% to 8 % and it resulting in possible profit increment of 50% to 100%.

Revenue Management is the application of exercised strategy that estimates consumer behavior at the micromarket level and make the most of product availability and price to maximize revenue growth. Revenue Management is about optimizes revenue from offered business.

Revenue Management is a solid management science that utilizes statistical and mathematical concepts, based on operations research and management science methodology and tools in changing marketing environment to provide information to:

. Precisely review prospecting consumer behavior under dynamically changing market environment
. Establish the most effective way to price and assign inventory to reach and every prospecting consumer, each and every day, formulate real-time modification as market conditions change, with the consumer in real-time
. Convey this information immediately to distribution and sale outlets which deal with the consumer in real-time
. Work as a decision-support reserve for marketing and operational purpose, containing but not restricted to: pricing, product development, advertising, sales, scheduling, distribution, human resource utilization and capacity planning.

Businesses worldwide are going under remarkable pressure by having giant capital investments occupied to their capacity/resources up to bottom line and to optimizing and recovered revenues from their fragile capacity, products and/or services. So, what can be done to execute RM effectively is very important.

How to reduce the execution pains and optimize the benefits?

In fast changing supply and demand circumstances, how do you handle your resources and price your products and services? The challenges are find out the following:

. How do you predict requirement for distinct products and services?

. How do you assign and set aside the capacity/resources for high revenue/profit customers and products?

. How do you optimize capacity employing as well as revenue realization?

. How do you rework capacity/resource allocations set up on demand on a customary basis to optimize revenues?

. How do you maximize overbooking to lessen service failures costs?

. How do you distinguish product arrangement to maximize revenues?

. How do you chase surplus capacity and propose discounts at the right time to speed up demand without mitigate revenues.

. At what time you change capacity/resources to compete long-term supply and demand?

Adopting the right method of revenue management

From a CEO's point of view, revenue management is serious as it allows companies to successfully direct the challenges of supply, demand and other issues. Revenue management is a course of action and method brings in to order a company, provides it a strategic benefit over the competition by allows the company to sell the "right product to the right customer, at the right price, at the right time." Revenue management strategies stable the tradeoffs amid revenues, capacity utilization and service failures. Revenue management has been shown in many purposes to offer strategic, competitive and financial rewards.

Revenue management systems and processes can provide marvelous strategic return. By implementing revenue management systems and processes, American Airlines observed more than a billion dollars in incremental annual revenues after airline deregulation.

Though RM concept is very simple but execution of revenue management systems has kept very difficult. The availability of current RM system are either in-house or vendor-related and are very costly and time intensive to put into practice and very complex to use in which they upset the processes and people during and after execution.

Unluckily, revenue management execution and applicability have not been focused appropriately and stay behind with two of the biggest obstruction for companies to entirely assign to and profit from such systems. Many users of current systems have objection about the "black box" method used in applying compound revenue management prediction and maximization models. There are many revenue management models available like hybrid class of revenue management, advanced pros revenue management system, Navitaire's Revenue Management System, Portal's Revenue Management System etc to achieve the additional revenue and are vary depending upon the industry in which it is applied. Before implementing a revenue management system any organization must study whether the methods can be useful in their business and the necessity in which, it can push further to develop.

Reducing the Execution Pain

So how do you reduce the pain related with revenue management execution and applicability? Here are some implications:

Open Systems (Internet, Intranet or LAN client/server platform): Companies should force collectively made to order Internet / Wireless application standards, protocols and platforms. By applying software and using open standards investment in IT infrastructure, it can be maintained and comprehended for long periods of time. Revenue management software should harmonize a company's accessible investment in the infrastructure. By leveraging accessible software/hardware/networking infrastructure, companies can reducing the cost of execution and prevent training or failure costs.

Framework flexibility: Components-based and completely integrated revenue management software solutions should be chosen and it should available with existing database and Web/application servers of software built on a flexible framework and can be easily integrated. To apply revenue management systems it should avoid monolithic proprietary systems that propose very little flexibility for ad-hoc decision support or future improvement and software that does not combine with the bequest systems well.

Execution of Phase: Revenue management includes composite estimation and maximization models. When executing such systems today, benefits cannot be completely grasped until all models are entirely incorporated. This could get cost of millions of dollars and more time. Companies should evade ideas that need two to three years and multi-million dollars. A phased approach that gives entry to essential revenue management metrics should be adopted. Although optimization models will be required to maximize supply and demand or maximize resource allotment, the real emphasis in first phase should be to make out and collect the precise data, obtain users comfortable with RM metrics, and apply and make small adjustment of forecasting models until adequate historical data is pull together. This will reducing predicting fault and set up self-assurance in predicting models to lead better RM applicability. Maximizing models should be executing in second phase or soon after. Revenue management systems and processes should address business problems and give activity that generates a path for maximization twelve months after implementing first phase.

Front-End Platform (as opposed to back-end transaction processing platform): In general extremely automated and closely integrated with reservation or transaction systems of companies executes revenue management system at a large. The systems are operating in the back-end and compel extremely practiced analysts to control and manage this method. An easy to use front-end to the compound revenue
management system can develop analyst productivity and get better results. Revenue management systems should agree to users to make what-if analysis to study the influence of parameter or input changes on the prediction and maximization model yield. It should be in such a manner it create any type of ad hoc report as users reflect and analyze.

Time & Cost: Cost of revenue management systems is generally $1 million to $3 million and takes more than two years to put into practice. Companies should look at low-cost, high-value substitute and choose solutions with lessen inadequacies in designing, developing and executing revenue management software. By offering resources to high-priority matter and functionality and by claiming on reducing avoidable functionality and consulting actions, costs and execution time can be considerably lessen.

Demand forecasting and pricing: Demand forecasting is the key tool from which all other revenue management subject goes around. While implementing revenue management systems some times an Achilles heel appears so CEOs should look to demand forecasting and consider that point too. Without precise demand forecasting there will be no optimization of resource provision to products/customers completed. It also include the question, what prices should be specified to which customers through which channels for all products? (Including group, corporate, incentive, Internet.). For example, various demand forecasting methods are used in revenue management in cargo industry are, booking profiles, moving average models, exponential smoothing models (with seasonality and/or trend effects), causal (regression) models, auto-regressive time series models, kalman filters, neural nets, adaptive forecasting models etc.

Automation of Revenue Management:

Automating the method to take out, transform and load data into revenue management data warehouse, run statistical and mathematical models on a periodic basis, and provide easy interfaces to execute the operation are necessary for considerably improve analyst productivity and business performance.

Inventory Control and Sales Management:

The sales strength is also a user of information from a revenue management system. Whether it is computerize inventory control or relationship-based sales, companies recognize noteworthy progress in revenues if appropriate RM ideology is incorporated at all sales levels. The buy-in from sales management and cooperation in set up procedure to pursue RM techniques and in generating corresponding incentives plan is serious for long-term success.

Apart from the above the following points and analytical procedures are also to be considered.

The Revenue Management Lifecycle

Revenue management is a lifecycle of course of action to create, confine, and accumulate revenue for each customer. It has become a significant element of the enterprise. The Revenue management lifecycle also covers a continuing process of examines, appraise, and maximize each phase of the lifecycle.

Revenue Capture

Revenue capture optimizes market share by means of rival pricing models and flexible balance and credit control to allow any service for any subscriber.

Revenue Analysis

On the total revenue management lifecycle revenue analysis is considered and to recognize the revenue relationships with customers and partners it builds up satisfaction. Revenue analysis guarantees all transactions are carrying out with the fullest viable control, integrity, and completeness. It gives real-time verification, reporting, analysis, and control of all procedures and actions which assist optimize revenue and minimize loss linked with fraud and revenue leakage.

Profits of implementing Revenue Management and its future

Companies that want to accomplish something, not just to survive, must put into practice strategic technologies that permit them to constantly alter to vibrant and real-time supply and demand circumstances. Although airlines initiate and exhibit revenue management, it is showing to be a very efficient cutthroat tool in many industries. Unlike other technology vogue, revenue management is extremely rooted in management science and information technology and above all, brings discipline to an organization.

Today, many manufacturers and service providers are facing the problems of revenue generation due to intense competition, margins are shrinking more and more, customer loyalty is spoiling gradually and segregation is critical. More than ever before, industry toppers require reacting rapidly to varying market conditions and shifting customer necessities. To meet these threats, global leaders are heavily shifting

towards revenue management solutions that facilitate them to increase an in depth understanding of the services that customer's value and how they can be brought for maximum profit.

Because creating revenue and optimizing profit are greatest in mind for service providers, they should depend on revenue management solutions to allow them to react to new market opportunities and squeeze the competition by attracting the customer, introducing new services, and in the end driving value to the bottom line. End-to-end management of customer revenue across offerings, channels and geographies are achieved only through revenue management.

The future of revenue management was aptly explained in The Wall Street Journal as follows: "Re-engineering has run its course. You manage your quality totally. Where do you turn for future gains? Perhaps to the marketplace, with 'revenue management.'... Now with computing costs plunging, revenue management is poised to explode."

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