The controller is the internal accountant of a hotel. He or she is responsible for the
actual and effective administration of ﬁnancial data produced on a daily basis in the hotel.
In the lodging property, daily ﬁnancial status must be available to corporate owners,
management, and guests. This requires a well-organized staff, not only to prepare oper-
ating statistics but also to assist the general manager in determining the effectiveness of
each department manager. Often the general manager relies on the controller to provide
ﬁnancial insight into the operations of the property. These include cash ﬂow, discounts,
evaluation of insurance costs, fringe-beneﬁt cost analysis, investment opportunities, com-
puter technology applications, banking procedures, and more.
This department processes accounts payable—amounts of money the hotel owes to
vendors; accounts receivable—amounts of money owed to the hotel by guests; the general
ledger—a collection of accounts that the controller uses to organize the ﬁnancial activities
of the hotel; statement of cash ﬂows—a projection of income from various income-
generating areas of the hotel; the proﬁt-and-loss statement—a listing of revenues and
expenses for a certain time period; and the balance sheet—a listing of the ﬁnancial po-
sition of the hotel at a particular point in time. It is a busy department that provides
ﬁnancial information to all department directors.
The general manager of a limited-service property acts as the controller with the as-
sistance of the night auditor. (In some properties, the night audit is performed during the
day, and the night auditor is replaced with a lower-salaried front desk clerk for late-night
coverage.) Also, the ownership of a limited-service property hotel may be a part of a
larger ﬁnancial portfolio of a business, which assists the general manager to perform. the