Until recently the trend amongst the big TMCs was to minimise the human touch as much as possible. So, automating the booking process was a priority and most frontline staff were trained to be order-takers.
The pandemic changed all that. Travellers are now reliant on TMCs to guide them through the maze of challenges they have to deal with, in a market that has been disrupted beyond recognition. However, many TMCs no longer have the resources or the skillsets and experience to do this.
It is estimated that, during the pandemic, TMCs cut 15 – 70% of their workforces and staff shortages remain a big issue as some TMCs struggle to deal with surging demand. 18% of travel managers say they are unhappy with their TMC’s offline servicing, whilst 9% of TMCs admit recruiting skilled staff is a major challenge.
We do things differently...
Since TakeTwo opened its doors almost a year ago, our headcount has risen by over 60% and we are literally besieged with applications from travel industry colleagues and newbies alike who are desperate to join us. Many clients and media ask us why have we been insulated against the crisis.
My response to that question is: a lot of staff are reluctant to return to TMCs who made them redundant during the pandemic. Those that do return are doing so, not because they want to, but because they just need a job. For many, they’ve lost trust in employers and also they’re worried about another crisis hitting the industry again. I know exactly how that feels as the same happened to me.
Since TakeTwo launched, the amount of goodwill we’ve received from ex. employees and the industry at large has been incredible. Most people clearly thought it was a brave move on our part to open a TMC during a pandemic. Since then, I have had so many messages from people wanting to be part of what we are doing.
Why do people want to work for TakeTwo?
Colleagues tell me I'm respected in this industry because I treat people properly and fairly. I’ve never climbed over somebody else to get a promotion, and I’m always honest, even in difficult situations. As a result, people trust me, and that goes a long way to attracting the best talent. I have had to make people redundant in the past, but it’s not what you do, but the way you do it that counts.
Another reason people want to come and work for us is that TakeTwo is fresh and inspiring and has a brand new mindset. People want to see what we’re about, where we are going and how they can become a part of that.
A business with soul
The message that TakeTwo is a business with soul and compassion seems to have resonated. We hired staff when we didn't have many customers because we believed in what we were doing and we were confident that TakeTwo would be a success.
Customer service is at the heart of what we do. We service customers for whom travel is business-critical, so we have to be able to deliver that. That’s why we employ people with the right mindset, experience, skills and, above all, who are culturally right to deliver the level of customer service we expect.