Case study: UK based hospitality client

A well known family ran holiday park in the South West of England has been operating for more than 20 years, and produces an annual turnover of £10.4million.

With continued success they soon found themselves busy, working in excess of 70 hours a week. Unsustainable and having a detrimental effect on the family, internal relationships were becoming strained, and the success of the holiday park and its legacy were at risk. The business recognised that it needed to make significant changes to its operating model to continue thriving.

The solution ✅
The team at GJC Advisory were introduced via professional advisors, and a thorough investigative approach using the Maus system commenced. Although profitable, there was a realisation that efficiencies needed to be made across departments, improving margins and boost profitability. Utilising the services of an experienced non exec advisor would help provide clarity and direction, reducing the building pressure on the senior executive team.

The business lacked internal experience and had become dependent on numerous external agencies. Not only were these costly, they were operating in silo’s unable to integrate back into the business. These agencies were being left unchallenged and unmonitored, and with such high costs, their return on investment was unknown.

A highly experienced operations director would be key to restructuring the business processes and prioritising these efficiencies. Hospitality expert Andy Dempster worked closely with the senior executive team to refocus the business strategy, and by utilising GJC’s part time experts help this business reach its objectives. Andy’s A- team included part time marketing director Laura Di Bonaventura and part time non exec Gavin Jones.

The journey
Andy started spending eight days per month within the business, assessing the company for key roles and responsibilities. When owners are being pulled into the day to day running of a business, strategy and growth plans can be neglected.  Andy quickly identified areas of priority for the business, which would centre around an oganisational redesign, freeing up the senior executive team to perform an owners role not a managers role. Andy worked with the senior executive team to coach them through board formation, the crucial role it plays in steering the business, and how important it is to stay out of the weeds of the business.

Part time marketing director Laura worked with the senior executive team eight days a month to develop a bespoke marketing strategy designed to focus the efforts on the commercial proposition and strengthen the connection between the holiday destination and its current and potential visitors. Brand workshops helped the business redefine its vision and value, and a new strategy was drafted to align shared goals across customer acquisition and retention. A skilled marketing manager was recruited and enabled the team to re-assess its dependency on external agencies. By sharing the updated business goals, agencies responsible for digital, pr and display marketing, were able to prioritise work and reduce the time spent on account.

Part time finance director Neil also contracted to carry out eight days per month getting the finances of the family ran business in shape. Previously outsourced to external accountants, the departments had no regular, reliable information for management reporting. Neil quickly got to work developing KPI reports circulated daily to enable agile decision making across departments. By focusing on the systems and processes that would be a foundation and support for the business as it continued grow, the key for the finance team was to give control back to the business for it to flourish

The results ✅
In 12 months have a skilled team that work for them. In a far more structured way to increase profitability. Allowing owners to manage corporate projects rather than the owners looking at day to day information.