We’re heading behind the scenes of the hotel again, this time to the accounts department, to meet Katie our finance assistant. Having worked at Watergate Bay Hotel for the past six and a half years, Katie has been on a real journey with us.
We caught up with her to find out more about what her role within the hotel.
How long have you worked at Watergate Bay Hotel?
I’ve been here for six and a half years. It’s gone so quickly, I can’t believe it’s coming up for seven years!
When I first joined I was on the front desk as a receptionist. I had great fun being front of house, interacting with guests and seeing the day to day life of the hotel. I stayed on the front desk for two years in total and then took the opportunity to become Food and Beverage Controller. As F&B controller I was responsible for stock take, GPs, managing margins and cost control of the three restaurants in the bay, The Beach Hut, The Living Space and what was the Dining Room (now Zacry’s). It really helped to have already worked on reception because I already knew all the different departments in the hotel.
After this I progressed to become finance assistant which is what I’ve been doing for the past few years. I work closely with Neil, the financial controller, on producing the accounts, reports and tax returns for the whole business.
What does a finance assistant do at the hotel?
It’s a varied role but day to day I handle lots of reconciliations, payment requests, and maintain the revenue sheets for the Extreme Academy, Swim Club and all of our restaurants.
Because the hotel is constantly growing and evolving there is always something new to do. There are always new projects, departments and products to keep track off. My job is never repetitive.
Have you always been interested in having a career in finance?
I grew up and went to University in Belarus where I studied at the Economics School reading Tourism, Hotel and Restaurant Business, so I knew when I was 18 that I wanted to work in the tourism and hotel industry. During my course I was able to take a years work experience abroad so moved to Denver, Colorado, for six months. Here I improved my English and got a taste for travel.
When my six months in Denver came to an end I travelled to Newquay for a few months. Whilst here I met my now husband and knew I wanted to come back after I graduated. A year later I came back and started work at Watergate Bay Hotel.
The company has supported me in studying to become a fully qualified accountant. I took my first set of exams December 2010, there are 14 papers in total, and I have only three more to go until I’m finished and become a full member of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants.
What’s your favourite part of your job?
The view! The accounts office have the best view out of all the offices. We sit above the Extreme Academy and have panoramic, uninterrupted views across the bay.
Apart from the view, the accounts team are great to work alongside. They are always there to help and offer support. Chris, the commercial director of the hotel, is my course mentor in the ACCA.
Can you sum up your role in three words?
And, I know this is a phrase but, ‘every day is a school day’ – there is always something new to learn!
When you’re not crunching the numbers at work where can we find you?
I have a young daughter who keeps me very busy. I love spending time with my family, going for walks on the beaches of Cornwall. We also love to travel and try to get away whenever we can.