Our resident bookkeeper, Emily Aitchison, hails from sunny Mackay in North Queensland. Emily has been working in the hospitality industry for more than six years and is passionate about the industry and all things bookkeeping, which makes her a perfect fit. When she’s not crunching numbers and solving important problems for our clients, you’ll find her cheering on her favourite NRL team, the Melbourne Storm, with her friends and family. She’s also an adventure-seeker – particularly tennis, water sports and even loves the occasional skydive and bungee jump. A real go-getter, both professionally and recreationally!
TELL US ABOUT YOUR JOURNEY INTO THE HOSPITALITY INDUSTRY
I actually didn’t start off in hospitality. After school, I enrolled into Central Queensland University to study medical science! I did some casual work on the side as a barmaid at a local bowls club, working 10-15 hours a week.
Six months in, I was asked to step into a dual role – duty manager and office support for the general manager doing the admin and bookkeeping. I grew to love working in a local community, developing relationships with customers and the hands-on experience of working at the club.
I also developed a real love for bookkeeping! So in 2014, I switched degrees and studied a Bachelor of Accounting/Bachelor of Business Management. I also took on a new role as finance assistant at hotel Mackay Grande Suites. This was great experience – I assisted with the bookkeeping for several venues (three nightclubs, hotel/accommodation, two restaurants, one bar/gaming and a tavern).
I was also lucky enough to work alongside my current team leader at Clarity Cloud, Jo Casey. She really helped me further develop my bookkeeping experience. I worked at Mackay Grande Suites for three-and-a-half years before making the shift to Clarity in September 2017.
WHAT DO YOU ENJOY MOST ABOUT WORKING WITH YOUR CUSTOMERS?
I’m quite a social person, so working with customers is probably one of the most enjoyable aspects of my job. A lot of the time is spent helping them with any issues they may have, but what I love most about it is building relationships. Working with clients who are friendly and appreciative makes my job a whole lot easier and enjoyable!
The Gallagher Hotels venues we look after are so easy to get along with. Shane from Terrigal Hotel is always a pleasure to work with due to his positive, upbeat demeanour. Shane’s response is often, “Ah, grand! No problem, Emily.”
WHAT’S A QUESTION YOU’RE COMMONLY ASKED BY CUSTOMERS?
Definitely anything payroll related. People will often ask me when they’re being paid – a universal issue we can all relate to! I get a lot of tax-related queries too. Staff can get confused as to what the tax threshold is that they should select. My suggestion would be that if your venue could explain it during an employee’s onboarding, or hand out a how-to guide with the employment pack to better explain tax declarations.
WHICH PUB OR RESTAURANT ARE YOU LOVING THIS MONTH?
I look after venues for the Gallagher Hotel Group, such as Terrigal Hotel, Hunters Hill Hotel and Chelsea Hotel – I love them all. The staff is very friendly and easy to talk to. I particularly love the senior team leaders Shane at Terrigal and Paddy at Hunters Hill. They’re very easy to have a joke with and we love their Irish accents!
WE’RE ALL ON A JOURNEY OF PERSONAL AND PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT. ARE YOU STUDYING, OR IS THERE AN AREA YOU’D LIKE TO FURTHER EXPLORE?
Yes, I’m currently studying a Bachelor of Accounting/Business Management – six months to go! I chose this degree, as I do love accounting, but would definitely like to explore managerial positions further, once I’ve completed my degree and gained more practical experience and confidence in the workforce.
To learn more about Clarity Cloud, watch our video.