Written By: Narek Hakobyan
In this employee spotlight, our Billing and Pricing Manager Elyse Jergens shares her journey from the Hospitality industry to logistics, highlighting her passion for process improvement and cross-functional collaboration. You will learn about her strategic approach, successful project navigation, and hidden talents, providing a brief glimpse into the person behind the role at Mercury.
Certainly, my professional progression to becoming a Billing & Pricing Manager starts with my college degree in Hospitality with a Business minor. Throughout my career, I’ve successfully led teams in Hospitality operations. Here, I refined my skills in people management, process optimization, and budget alignment to meet revenue goals. I consistently excelled when it came to meeting our budget objectives. Hospitality, at its core, is about orchestrating the right people in the right places at the right time—a principle that resonates with Logistics at Mercury, where precise shipment placement is crucial.
In 2020, amid the standstill in the hospitality industry, I sought an opportunity in finance, specifically billing utilities. Simultaneously, I took logistics courses, confirming my passion for the field. Recognizing my passion for billing and process improvement, I embraced roles in logistics, initially within an expedited transportation department. I quickly transitioned to billing within that company, immediately enhancing processes and refining reporting.
Billing and pricing are interconnected to me. My firsthand insights into services and bottom-line costs allow me to naturally approach pricing. This perspective enables me to collaborate with other departments and structure our services in a manner that benefits clients with cost-effective competitive rates.
In my role, a typical day starts with a strategic approach, starting 2-3 hours before the standard workday. This early start allows me to concentrate on improvement objectives, particularly in fixing broken processes, meeting my high standards, and provides me with uninterrupted focus. Given our 24/7, 365-day operation, these early hours allow for communication with overnight operations associates and our development team in Turkey, promoting collaboration on projects and processes.
As the larger team starts their day, I transition to collaborative efforts. The billing process, involves multiple steps such as reporting for accuracy and follow-up on shipment statuses with operations. These processes occupy a significant portion of my day. Beyond these tasks, I address client billing inquiries and engage cross-functionally with every department at Mercury
In my role, my passion lies in fixing broken processes. I find myself most engaged and driven when tackling issues or creating process improvements, this enthusiasm extends across all the positions I’ve held.
To fix processes, I strive to address and refine the underlying issues by actively seeking and welcoming feedback from clients and coworkers. I believe Embracing others perspectives, particularly from those directly impacted, is key in perfecting each process.
Certainly, in this scenario, I encountered complexities that required a reevaluation of an existing billing process. Despite the initial hurdles, my passion for addressing issues and enhancing processes drove me to relentlessly pursue solutions. I worked through various attempts to get it right. Rather than considering the initial endeavor a failure, I viewed it as a stepping stone to refine and enhance the underlying processes. In the end, we achieved tangible improvements.
Cross-functional collaboration is an integral part of my role everyday. Aligning with our company’s commitment to world-class teamwork, each day at Mercury involves collaboration for me to succeed with billing and pricing. I engage daily and or weekly with our accounting, operations, field operations, vendor relations, account management, and sales teams.
I think I should highlight here the most non-conventional cross-functional collaboration, as this best showcases how my daily work consistently follows our 3 company values. With Our rapid company growth, comes the need for enhancing billing platforms for both clients and internal teams. This leads to my weekly and sometimes daily collaboration with our design and development teams. In these sessions, we work to relentlessly improve and enhance current and future platforms through world class teamwork focusing to improve our clients overall experience.
My most significant learning experience has been navigating the complexities of our business, particularly in simplifying intricate shipping processes within a specialized niche. Accurate billing and pricing of our services for clients, requires an understanding of these operational intricacies. Mercury’s commitment to simplification goes deep within all of its core processes. Through internal simplification, I have access to comprehensive work instructions for the processes and procedures our guides follow during bookings, which allows me to find the information I need to succeed and ensure a seamless billing process.
I have always wanted to become fluent in a foreign language. During college, I took several semesters of Chinese. Despite the enthusiasm I had to learn the language, I approached the desire with realism. I eventually acknowledged the considerable time commitment required, especially given the complexities of Chinese writing. I ultimately prioritized graduating within the four-year timeframe.
On a personal note, there are some lesser-known facts about me. I can solve a Rubik’s Cube in under two minutes, with the potential to achieve even faster times through consistent practice.
Surprisingly, I have never attended a concert. On a contrasting note, I have a passion for sports, both as a spectator and a participant. In terms of active participation, I am involved with the local curling club. While not aiming for a national stage, my team emerged victorious in a Thursday night league.