Giving members more opportunities to be flexible in their day-to-day work, as well as their efforts to continue learning and developing, will be a key focus of some of the initiatives the Advantage Travel Partnership will introduce this year.
The consortium, which is celebrating its 40th birthday in 2019, has revealed a number of initiatives for members, set to be introduced over the coming months, including creating "regional communities" of agent members to improve communication.
Paula Lacey, Advantage’s group commercial and membership director, told TTG ahead of the consortium’s Vivolution conference in Cadiz the launch of eight such communities would bridge the gap between the group and its members.
“We want to get much closer to members as, geographically, issues can be quite different,” said Lacey ahead of Advantage’s conference in Cadiz at the weekend.
“One size does not fit all and what works in one area may not work in another.”
Lacey said planned initiatives included monthly regional conference calls with business development managers (BDMs) for members to take part in and ask questions.
“It will be a structured call with an agenda,” she explained. “Somebody from head office or a supplier can also be on the call for a specialised issue.”
Lacey said the plan was to launch these monthly regional calls in the autumn, which will be followed later in the year by the introduction of regional Facebook groups.
“These Facebook groups will allow members to talk to us and to each other; members will probably be able to answer of lot of other members’ questions,” she added.
Other developments to be rolled out will include the launch of community webinars and training “based on the needs” of members in each region, while companies joining Advantage will be given access to “new member buddies”.
“The buddies will make new members feel part of the community,” added Lacey.
“They will be somebody in their local community who meets the needs of that new member.”
Advantage will also revamp its communications by using Facebook Live to reduce “reliance on pesky emails”, while also expanding its online Training Academy platform.
“It’s about giving them flexibility to do the training at their desk, and be able to dip in and out.”