Case Study

WestJet Transforms Its Revenue Accounting Processes with Mercator’s RAPID Managed Services

WestJet’s ambitious goals to be one of the most successful airlines in the industry meant growth needed to be supported with leading industry technology and expertise. Mercator’s RAPID Managed Services solution supported WestJet to increase efficiencies and effectiveness allowing them to focus on generating revenue.

Background

WestJet is Canada’s low cost airline of choose, with 91 domestic and international destinations spanning from North America to Europe. Founded in 1996 and pioneered as a low-cost carrier to service domestic passengers, it has grown to an organization of more than 10,000 employees, and 18.5 million passengers per year, making it the eighth largest airline in North America.

Challenge

The fast expansion and success of WestJet was driven by their vision of being one of the five most successful international airlines in the world by 2016. This created a challenging environment for WestJet to operate within, with such short timelines to achieve such an ambitious goal. Starting as a traditional low cost domestic airline, before swiftly moving into international expansion, a fundamental transformation needed to take place from a ticketless reservations system to a traditional system based on providing tickets numbers. The existing reservations system was no longer able to support the needs of the business and WestJet needed a quick influx of expertise in the revenue accounting department.

Solution

While conducting extensive research into revenue accounting solutions, WestJet reached out to Mercator, who after detailed workshops and consulting activities, to better understand the work practices of the airline, was selected as their managed services partner. RAPID Managed Services was chosen to allow for swift determination of revenue, a boost in productivity and efficiency, reduced accounting costs, and refined processes. The carrier’s executives were armed with incisive management reports, giving them the confidence to make informed tactical decisions and winning long-term strategies.

The service delivery solution united industry, technology, advisory and analytics expertise for WestJet to create actionable business insights and operational improvements. Access to Mercator’s 250 airline revenue accounting experts guaranteed a smooth transition and implementation processes that has been honed over 20 years to help airlines meet changing business challenges.

Results

WestJet enhanced its interline revenue accounting function by accurately accounting for their revenue, resolving discrepancies and collecting cash as fast and as accurately as possible.

Key results include:

  • Increased efficiencies and effectiveness in revenue accounting reporting.
  • The introduction of a vacations reservation system and frequent flyer program.
  • Joined Bank Settlement Plans in Canada and Bermuda, as well as establishing Airline Reporting Centre, Airline Clearing Houses, Universal Air Travel Plan and other industry wide initiatives.
  • 14 implemented interline agreements and 3 code share partners.
  • Fully outsourced Fare Audit processes, enabling WestJet to focus on its core business of flying planes.
  • Improved levels of sales support to WestJet’s airlines partners.
  • Increased data availability used for management reporting and commercial decision-making.
  • Reduction in costs related to accounting processes transitioning from a manual to an automated system.
WestJet Transforms Its Revenue Accounting Process with Mercator’s RAPID BPM Service
We are extremely excited about our new partnership with Mercator. They demonstrate the same core values we hold and have provided us with a timely, efficient solution to a complex issue while maintaining strong internal controls and providing excellent customer service. This solution has provided a valuable part of the foundation for our growth relating to our interline strategy.

Janice Paget Vice President of Finance Projects, WestJet

Download case study

Read about the 5 ways for airlines to profit from Business Process Management.

Read the blog