Collaborating with expertise and knowledge is an investment in team spirit, for the team, by the team.
It serves two purposes: to reduce feelings of inadequacy and frustration caused by limited access to product information; and to align your staff with a culture of excellence. Practically, it’s about producing quality proposals, growing a shared knowledge base and developing expertise within the team, to boost the bottom line.
Impacting Enquiry Turnaround Time
An enquiry comes in. A family of five wants a coastal holiday with a difference, away from crowds. The parents are eco-warriors who want to teach their kids aged 3, 7 and 12 years, how to walk their talk. The kids love animals; the eldest is obsessed with tortoises and turtles. What’s your average turnaround time on an enquiry like this… if your team’s ‘family expert’ is on leave?
The clock starts. Now multiply this enquiry by ten prospects in a day, remembering that you’re probably not the only travel brand this family has approached. That’s how busy you can get and how competitive the business is.
Can you go from zero to sent in 20 minutes with a good quality proposal that matches the client’s requirements?
Time to get creative, fast. With organised content and shared expertise on hand, one consultant can ninja through all those prospects on the same day. Ambitious? Not really, not when there are time-saving organisational hacks that help them be more efficient and so increase their productivity.
The Building Blocks of Quality Proposals
Content, destination knowledge and expertise in the tourism trade live at the core of a relevant, business-forward strategy. Facilitate access to these assets and you’ve got a more efficient team of individuals who feel integral to the success of the business.
Some members of the team will know more about certain destinations than others; some will know certain supplier products more intimately; some are multilingual; some may specialise in a certain travel or traveller types. At a time when personalisation is standard requirement, proposals need that detail to gain an edge. Ideally, everyone in your team should feel empowered to service their clients accordingly.
Providing employees access to the necessary information their job requires is an integral part of every business strategy.
Organise for Efficiency
Destination knowledge, info on preferred supplier products, trade expertise and content can be comprehensively packaged as a basket of business assets – when they’re organised, available for communal use and easy to access, it helps the individual and the team work more efficiently.
Document destination knowledge and customise your content; translate existing itineraries and store as collateral to be repurposed. Accommodation, activity and restaurant suppliers can be tagged, labelled and categorised by internal rating criteria (from comfort to luxury), by flags (seasonal or malaria-prone zone), by tags (holiday type, for example, honeymoon, safari, beach), by experience (animal interaction or wine-tasting), etc.
Add noteworthy comments from site inspections, fam trips and educationals, that help inform the selection of a product. Commissions paid by suppliers can be documented. In a sense, you’re loading and organising your intellectual assets in one place for everyone’s benefit.
As a communication channel for collaboration, it empowers everyone to contribute to the consistency with which your brand is portrayed.
Once it’s organised and managed in one accessible place, it’s quicker to get the specific info and content needed for anyone on your team to create good quality proposals. There’s no scrurrying around, fumbling in ignorance or guessing what might be a good fit for the client, because the info at your fingertips is already researched, tried and tested. Alternatives are easy and quick to identify when the client reverts back for a tweak here and there or product availability is in question.
The quicker your response, the better the service you can consistently provide across your company. In practical terms, the information is visible in the Wetu Itinerary Builder for easy selection during itinerary creation; it’s also visible in the Consultant Portal for thorough planning and product development. Content is automated and simplified for optimal use.
Organise to Optimise Resources
If you had a system that organised and stored all the information needed to design a personalised itinerary for the family of 5, even with your ‘family expert’ out-of-office, you could access their expertise and confidently generate a suitable proposal in far less time than it would’ve taken otherwise.
Consider it skills-sharing. You’d save hours on research, hours producing relevant content, and hours building a logical, personalised itinerary.
All the time saved frees you to consult and engage with the client for longer.
More time is exactly what modern travellers want from their travel professionals; so if you match or even exceed their expectation with better engagement, you’ve got a happy client. A happy client will advocate for your business and the service you provide, which helps you tick that competitive edge box.
Furthermore, time saved building itineraries affords you the opportunity to service more clients, and potentially earn more revenue. You have more time to develop your product knowledge (and a space to do that in, right at your work station, from the most reliable source, namely your peers) in lieu of actual experience. With an organised bag of tricks to dip into at a moment’s notice, you can respond faster and compete better for business.
Organise for Productivity
Churning out proposals fast and in volumes is one thing, but producing relevant, personalised proposals that inspire hooks sales. And being able to do that consistently is good for business. The definition of productivity:
…a specific measurement of the amount & value of the work that’s been completed in a set amount of time…
Consider the amount of time, labour and money you spend on specific tasks. What is the value you produce in a set workday? Then imagine how organised collateral would disrupt the old formula.
Calculate your Productivity
There are resources you continuously spend to acquire product and destination knowledge. Potentially, this invites unwelcome friction in a high-pressure job that prizes speed and accuracy, especially when you have this to do everyday:
- interpret new client enquiries
- profile a client, identify products and alternatives
- source content
- create itineraries
- translate an itinerary, if required
- access relevant special offers
- make adjustments
- advise clients
What’s the sense in slaving over something a colleague can provide insight on (even in their absence)?
Impact the Quality of your Proposals
By streamlining access and organising content and travel info, you improve enquiry turnaround time and volume, and produce proposals that are consistent with your brand. Less work, more output sets your team up to exceed the overall resources spent.
- Collaborate on content, information and collateral to eliminate guess work and instill an inclusive culture.
- Repurpose existing tour products that meet the criteria of new enquiries.
- Spend more time with clients, improving the level of engagement and stimulating loyalty, in turn directly influencing repeat and referral business opportunities.
- Produce sales material faster to support targeted campaigns, like inspiration boards with branded preferred supplier iBrochures and itineraries. Quickly put together promotions by theme, holiday or traveller types, based on specials, trends and popular products, or to boost low season prospects.
This is next-level teamwork, that brings consistency to your presentations and shows that your team is steering the business in the same direction, at a competitive pace, and reinforcing your brand.
Happiness is a motivated, invested team! When the available resources are optimised for efficiency, they save time and produce more (good quality proposals), which helps them do their jobs better. Your business can only benefit from having a staff that feels empowered in their work. Doing their best for their clients is the natural reward of their transactions. Now, get organised and support your team with the resources they need to excel.