A tourist company is an economic entity that has the rights of a legal entity that produces and sells tourist products. The products of travel companies are the results of activities aimed at organizing leisure, recreation, recreation and treatment of the population, and implemented by performing the following functions:
— production of services;
— sale (sales);
— organization of the production process;
— financial and economic activities.
These functions are a reflection of the essence of the management process, the purpose of which is to achieve the maximum possible result when using a limited number of resources. As the main resources of a travel company, we can consider the labor, financial and information components of the production process of tourist services. Effective organization of these resources in the process of doing business allows you to achieve the goals and objectives set by the owners and managers of the company.
The current stage of development of the business environment in the field of tourism is determined by the increasing demands of consumers for the services provided, the search for new forms of their provision, the formation of innovative approaches to the organization of the management process. The main directions of improving the principles of organizing business activities in the tourism business are the optimization of financial resources and increasing the efficiency of using the company’s labor resources.
The market for providing tourist services is represented by the activities of tour operators and travel agents. Differences in the organization of their activities are manifested, first, in the totality of the functions implemented and the formation of the revenue part of the budget of enterprises. In addition, the composition of the list and the salary fund of travel agencies and tour operators differ significantly. In the first case, organizations are usually considered, the number of which does not exceed 10-12 people, in the second — large companies that may have several branches and number more than 200 people. However, regardless of the average number of employees, the specifics of the activities of travel companies require a well-coordinated social community aimed at solving common problems.
The effectiveness of human resources management and the assessment of their ability to achieve corporate goals is determined by the existing management method at the tourism enterprise. A well-known American entrepreneur, the founder of the software company Fog Creek, Joel Spolsky (Joel Spolsky) identifies three main methods of personnel management:
— identification method.
The first two, according to the author, are effective in large production companies that need a centralized management system and constant control of the decisions made. The identification method is most typical for travel companies, the specifics of which are the constant communication with customers. The essence of the identification method is to achieve the identification of the company’s employees with its goals by creating a “team” when managing the company.
By including each employee of a travel company in the process of producing a travel service, subordinating private goals to the achievement of a common one, and forming a corporate culture, it becomes possible to unite smart, creative specialists in a cohesive team. At the same time, it is necessary to develop the existing system of motivation, actively form the perception of responsibility for each individual employee for the results of the entire company as for their own achievements, readiness and ability to perform the functional duties of related specialists. The latter is especially important in the context of a tougher competitive environment in the tourism business.
The organization of business activities in the field of tourism should be based on the principles of advanced management, the development of strategic goals and objectives that contribute to the constant growth of the company, its movement towards development and economic prosperity. In this regard, at present, the management of travel companies is often based on the principles of project management. The project can be the opening of a new sales office of a travel company, the development and marketing of a new tourist destination, the use of new promotion methods, etc. The essence of the concept of project management (Project Management) consists in an adequate representation of any target change and the development of stages of its implementation, associated with time and financial costs. The process of planned changes, carried out according to certain rules within the established budget and time constraints, is project management. An important feature of the use of the project management methodology is its targeted focus on obtaining the final commercial result, taking into account possible risks, as well as in the conditions of a strict framework imposed by restrictions on the timing of its implementation and budget.
The implementation of the project management concept is possible if two management principles are observed: the presence of a team of professionals aimed at achieving a single goal (the implementation of the project solution) and the competent use of management accounting in the enterprise. The latter aspect implies the solution of the problem of financial and economic support of the travel company, since an effective management organization will also include the personal responsibility of each employee for the decisions made by them. To determine the results of the actions performed, it is advisable to group the income and expenses in the management accounting of a travel company by separate responsibility centers.
It should be taken into account that the activities of travel companies are currently affected by general economic factors, which are expressed in a certain decrease in the economic activity of the main players in the tourism services market. The increase in rental rates, the reduction of consumer funds allocated for recreation and entertainment, and the tightening of the tax impact from a system of financial and economic relations aimed at optimizing the production costs of a travel agency. In solving this problem, an important place is occupied by the use of mechanisms of a resource-oriented approach to the formation of the company’s budget.
The Center of responsibility (CO) is a separate business unit that has the ability to influence the income and / or expenses associated with the organization of its activities. From the point of view of the organization of the management system, it is advisable to consider as the center of responsibility of each employee who makes decisions and, ultimately, forms the image of a travel company. This approach is effective from a financial point of view if the costs of organizing such accounting do not exceed the amount of the financial result from its maintenance. The hierarchical principle of the management organization allows for the possibility of the existence of subordinate lower- level CO-ops within separate centers of responsibility. At the same time, the head of each individual responsibility center must necessarily be responsible for the results of the co-subordinated TSO, since he has the rights and obligations to determine their income and expenses.
In the field of tourism, as an object of business activity, the effectiveness of the financial result of the center of responsibility is determined in value terms, that is, the final indicator of the organization is the center of financial responsibility (CFR). From the point of view of the possibilities of influencing certain cost indicators of the Central Federal District, there are several types of Central Federal District. Revenue centers (sales centers) have the ability to influence only sales revenue. In the tourism business, such CFOs may include divisions (structures) engaged in the sale of a tourist product formed by other economic divisions of the same travel company. Cost centers have the ability to influence only the costs of forming and selling tourist products. Such CFOs include the economic divisions of the tour operator company that form tourist products, but further organize sales, as well as various “service” structures, for example, the courier service. Profit centers have the ability to influence both income and expenses. This type of FO requires a high level of qualification of its managers and is the most difficult from the point of view of the achievability of the set results.
These include sales offices of tourist products that operate on a separate, separate object and own their own budget. If a travel company has many branches (sales centers), significant amounts of revenue, and stable financial revenues, it is also advisable to create investment responsibility centers that can influence the effectiveness of capital investments. The main task of this type of responsibility centers is the development, analysis and evaluation of business plans for the development of entrepreneurial activity. Since the activities of tour operators and travel agents have their own specifics, it should be noted that the above types of Central Federal District are more typical for tour operator companies. For companies engaged in travel agency activities, a separate subspecies of the profit responsibility center is also characteristic — the “margin center”, which has the ability to influence revenue and costs, and exclusively on direct expenses. At the same time, indirect costs are taken into account in the distribution of profits and are not subject to detailed calculation.
The activities of various types of responsibility centers are inextricably linked to the management accounting system. At present, the effective organization of business activities is impossible without a combination of accounting and management accounting in the enterprise. One of the most important elements of management accounting is the preparation and presentation of management reports. In the activities of travel companies, depending on its scale and the volume of services provided, it is advisable to prepare annual, quarterly and monthly reports. Seasonal reports are also compiled for individual tourist destinations. Thus, in order to more accurately account for costs in travel companies, the following types of reports should be used:
— current report on the implementation of tours. The deadline for its submission is determined as the scale of production increases. The main subjects of this type of report are tour sales managers;
— current report on the formation of tours. This type of report is relevant only for travel companies that are tour operators. The term of its formation is determined by the dynamics of sales. The compilers are tourism managers, heads of departments for the production and sale of tourist products, departments for working with travel agents, and travel agents for online booking.;
— monthly income and expense report. The deadline for submitting this report is the first half of the month following the reporting month. The company’s managers, as well as the heads of the financial responsibility centers in the part concerning them compile this report. The monthly report on expenses and income is the main financial document that allows you to carry out effective management accounting and optimize all types of financial resources of the company;
— quarterly balance sheet. The company’s managers develop this type of report in the period following the reporting month;
— quarterly cash flow statement. The deadline for its submission is the month following the reporting period. The developers and main users are the management of the travel agency. Drawing up this type of report is not always advisable, since it can be formed because of income and expense reports, as well as the balance sheet.
— annual income and expense report. It is compiled in January-February of the year following the reporting year by the managers of the travel agency and (or) its owners, and is accompanied by a balance sheet and an explanatory note.
These types of management report allow you to monitor the implementation of strategic and tactical plans from a financial point of view, identify reserves of funds used and, in general, optimize the costs of a travel company.