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Four Seasons reimagines its Finance and Accounting function

Four Seasons and Capgemini targeted standardisation, delivery excellence, change management, and automation to transform the organisation’s finance operations into an efficient and global delivery centre

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Client: Four Seasons Hotels and ResortsRegion: GlobalBusiness Segment: Hospitality
success story ChallengeClient Challenge Four Seasons wanted to enhance its existing, decentralised finance processes to drive efficiency and assign resources to higher value-added and guest-facing activities
success story SolutionSolution Four Seasons and Capgemini implemented a delivery model to optimise, standardise, automate its finance processes, and create an efficient and effective multilingual delivery centre
success story Benefits
Reduced operating costs Improved information quality Enhanced customer experience Improved efficiency Platform for growth

Supporting a “Gold Star” hospitality experience

Since its foundation in 1961, Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts has operated on the belief that every customer should not only be treated like a special guest, but in the way they would want to be treated themselves. This is a conviction that is deeply ingrained in the DNA of all Four Seasons employees and has remained unchanged as the organisation has spread across the world. Building upon these values, Four Seasons continues to seek innovative ways to meet and exceed the expectations of its guests while earning recognition as a leading provider of luxurious hospitality experiences.

This pursuit of innovation led Four Seasons to examine its existing global finance processes, where it discovered an opportunity to launch a transformation that would introduce an efficient and cost-effective global delivery model. To do so, the business decided to standardise its transactional processes across its individual hotels, ensuring greater reliability and accuracy.

A transformation journey based on proven success

Four Seasons partnered with Capgemini based not only on its understanding of the presented challenges and their importance to the organisation, but also its grasp of the emotional impact such a transformation would have on guests, vendors, and employees.

Together, Four Seasons and Capgemini began the journey to deliver finance and accounting processes from three delivery centres. This included accounts payable (AP), payroll administration, income audit, vendor payment and AP help desk support, general ledger reconciliation and analytics, and contract management. This approach focused on consolidating and standardising transactional processes, followed by implementing automation to enhance the speed of operations.

Delivery excellence at the heart of transformation

The Four Seasons-Capgemini team implemented five key solutions focused on delivery excellence:

  • Standardisation of decentralised processes, resulting in improvement to the organisation’s overall efficiency
  • Documentation of standard operating procedures and strict adherence that resulted in improvements to processing quality and end-customer satisfaction
  • A governance model that addressed the organisation’s decentralisation and partnered with Four Seasons’ leaders to serve as a key contributor to success
  • Change management ensured by effective communication with each hotel through regular connection and collaboration with Four Seasons team leaders
  • Introduction of optical character recognition and incident management tool improved the business’ turnaround time while robotic process automation (RPA) is also evolving gradually on key processes.

Together Capgemini and Four Seasons implemented standardisation, effective documentation, a strong governance model, and change management, which led to greater efficiency and a better customer experience across all of Four Seasons’ existing and new hotels.

Increased process efficiency delivers enhanced business outcomes

Capgemini and Four Season’s growth-oriented solution and process standardisation delivered a range of business outcomes, including:

  • An innovative pricing model that led to 80% straight-through processing
  • Enhanced SLA compliance
  • Improved data entry accuracy
  • Auto onboarding support and day one support for new hotels
  • Expansion of the income audit to 365 days a year
  • Highly accurate and timely payroll
  • More efficient workload and workforce management
  • Enhanced contract management
  • A stronger governance model.

Following its successful transformation, Four Seasons has achieved faster, more efficient, and more effective transactional processes, resulting in greater responsiveness and an improved overall customer experience. In addition, by automating processes, the solution freed up property level teams to focus on strategic activities and business management, ensuring that they could constantly address issues directly related to their guests. The transformation of Four Seasons’ transactional processes means new hotels can now be transitioned seamlessly using a plug and play transition methodology.

By applying its proven experience with automation and business processes on top of Four Season’s industry knowledge and expertise, Capgemini ensured that its partner realised its transformation project’s original goal: to give Four Season’s guests an extraordinary experience every time they stayed at one of their hotels. By working together from start to finish throughout the project, Capgemini and Four Seasons achieved a success that would have been impossible otherwise.

The Collaborative Approach

By working together from start to finish throughout the project, Capgemini and Four Seasons achieved a success that would have been impossible otherwise. The project combined Capgemini’s flexibility and ability to manage largescale decentralised operations with Four Seasons’ thorough knowledge of the hospitality industry to deliver a solution that provided its customers with a best-in-class experience. Deliver a solution that provided the customers with a best in class experience.

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