Unit 6 – Preparing for employment in Travel & Tourism P6, M3 & D2

In this assignment I will be explaining the factors that contribute to an effective workplace in travel and tourism organisations. I will then review how different travel and tourism organisations motivate staff in the workplace. I will then analyse the factors that contribute to an effective workplace, highlighting good practice from different travel and tourism organisations  


In this part I will be explaining the factors the contribute to an effective work place
An effective working environment, including:  

By having a good work location, it contributes towards the staff members working harder as they enjoy their work location. For example, holiday representatives working in hotel resorts will enjoy their job as they gain the holiday atmosphere., making the customers happy because they are enjoying the weather and creates an overall positive atmosphere just by working in a certain place  

    Working conditions 

    The employers must make positive working conditions for staff members to work in as if there are not good working conditions it means that they will not be wanting to work and decrease their work motivation. By having negative working conditions it might high staff turnover as they do not want to be working there are find another place with better working conditions

      Hours of work 
      In 1998, working time regulations were brought in place for different ages. For everyone over 18 the general rules are: to do a 48 hour working week, five weeks of holidays a year which include some of the bank holidays, a day off each work and a twenty-minute break if working a shift more than six hours. 

      For staff members aged between 16-18, they should have a half hour break when working over 4.5 hours and can work no more than 40 hours of work a week, and can only do eight hours working days.
      By having set hours of work it makes an effective work environment as it makes the employees know what shifts they are working and it will also create a positive environment, as staff members do not need to get the others to covet the shits they might be working in the future  

      Health and safety 
      There are specific regulations relating in the travel and tourism sector such as: when food is being served at a restaurant there needs to be high levels of hygiene, chemical levels in swimming pools, all staff to be DBS checked and lifeguards to be around swimming pools, water rides or any water area. Safety procedures are important for an effective workplace as if procedures are not met and kept up to date, could make the workplace close down. Health and safety is important for staff members and guests/customers to ensure that everyone is safe at all times

        Equipment and resources
        Computers and the systems used are important for people working in the travel and tourism sector especially travel agents. It is important for travel agents as they use different computer systems to plan and book customer’s holidays. By having the computer systems, it helps them do their job. 
        Resources also help make a positive work environment such as: having an area where the employees can relax during their breaks, have all equipment onsite such as stationary items for staff to use. 

        Social events 
        Most travel and tourism companies will have a yearly Christmas party and social events throughout the year for the staff to go to.  the events exist to make the staff get along with each other out of the workplace to create positive working relationships and a good team bond

          The other theory is by Herzberg; he identifies characters which help people enjoy or not enjoy their job. The factors of positive work are:  the type of work, chance of promotion, have responsibilities and duties, being noticed for their achievements, being recognised by senior workers and feeling like they are making a difference.  
          The factors that contribute to the staff to not enjoy their job and the work is: salary, working conditions (if it is clean and tidy), relationships with other colleagues and senior staff (if the relationships are negative or positive) and the company policy (maternity pay, sick pay)

          Incentives, including:

          Performance related pay 
          Depending on how they employees works the pay varies. The better the employee works the more money they earn. This will make the staff more motivated as they will get more money if they work harder. 
          Incentive schemes
          An example is a competition for staff to enter and the prize could be shopping vouchers or a short break. Commission levels are also important for travel agents as it goes on how many holidays and ancillary services they agents they sell in a month. Depending on the amount the commission could be high. This contributes to make them motivated to help customers and then book as many holidays they can in a month to gain extra money. 

          Management style
           Different management styles affect the day-to-day operation of an organization, but also have an important role to play in encouraging effective teamwork. 
          The management styles vary depending on the manager. Some may find it more effective to show not tell how to do something or otherwise will go into a lot of detail and not give examples how to do.
          Equal opportunities and legislations 
           Having equal opportunities has a positive effect on create a positive working environment.  The equal opportunities are to interview all different people for the same job role no matter of their gender, age, sexuality, race, religious believes, disabilities and lifestyle. 
          There are also legislations to make workers more equal: Race Relations Act 1976, Sex Discrimination Act 1975, Disability Discrimination Act 1975 And 1995, Equal Pay Act 1970 And Age Discrimination. 

          Investors in people
           Investors in people is a UK quality standard award which came in 1991. Companies in the travel and tourism sector who win the award show that they invest in training schemes for current and new employees. There are four principles for the organisation to meet in order to get the award, and they are: commitment from the top to develop all employees, regular review of training and development needs (if a new course has been made and it would benefit the company if they send their staff members on the course, taking relevant action to meet those needs throughout people’s careers and evaluating training and development outcomes for individuals and the organisation in order to improve their staff motivation and work quality  
          Before the appraisal finishes, an action plan will be filled out to show how the employee can develop their skills and will be able to monitor each individual. 

          This means how much money the staff members get. The pay includes the daily wage, benefits included such as from the government, a percentage to pau for the nursery fee if they have a child or paying into a pension scheme. T
          his makes people motivated to work as they would want to know thy4e have a pension for in the future. They might also have more motivation if they are on a higher wage rather than a wage they were on previous in an old job. 

            This is mainly for  certain jobs in the travel and tourism sector such as  working in a travel agency or hotel, the discounts are on holidays and hotel stays.
            The discounts could also be on holidays where they will be researching destinations for work if they are a travel agent 

              Holiday entitlement 
              Organisations have to let their employees have at least four weeks of holiday every year. Some organisation may give their staff 25 days off depending on how long they have been working there.

                Pension schemes
                A pension is money that employees get once they retire. The money comes from themselves, the company and the government, this will motivate people as they will be guaranteed a pension if they stay working there and the place does not close down. 

                   Many jobs within the travel and tourism sector come with job perks. The perks are likely to be: having a company car, free meals during the working day, free or discounted cost on the uniform they must wear, discounted or free use of a local gym and facilities (swimming pool, steam and sauna rooms), deals on tourist attractions for them, family members and friends. The main perks are free or low cost rail travel and holidays abroad. This will motivate staff as they can get things for a lower cost than everyone else and they will want to stay with their company.

                    Opportunities for promotion and progression 
                    When people know that there is a possible higher role in the future, they are more likely to be motivated to be the best that they can be and to show that they are able to do the job and take on roles and responsibilities.  

                    Working relationships, including:

                    Working in teams is very important as it is what will make people enjoy their work if they get on with their colleagues. By having good teamwork, it increases work quality, less staff conflicts and reduce the staff absence (as they will be not avoiding their team members)

                    Job roles and lines of responsibility 
                    It  is important for organisations to show the clear job roles of each staff member so they all know what they are doing during the working week. By having job roles, it helps gives out responsibilities such as being responsible of training apprentices 

                    Channels of communication 
                    Open communication is vital in the work place, because if staff members cannot talk to their peers and managers at ease and able to share anything, the work environment will be negative and not make the employees motivated to complete their work and duties. The types of communication are: verbal and face to face, written in a style of a letter and electronic communication such email, video call or text message. 

                    Grievance and disciplinary procedures
                    The procedures must be stated in the employees contract when they first start their job or when the progress onto a higher job role and the contract changes. 
                    The procedures happen before the employee gets fired. There are many warnings, such as: lack of capability and qualifications (even though the employer should make sure correct training is given), misconducts (when them employee is always late and have many sick days off, even if they aren’t sick) and gross misconducts (assault to another team member or customer). 

                    Buddies and mentoring

                      Mentoring schemes are more popular in the travel and tourism sector. This increase staff morale as new employees get a work relationship with an experienced buddy. Both of them meet regularly (if not daily) to talk about the new person’s job and how they can develop on their personality and how to get promoted in the work place. Sometimes it is not official about the mentorship and it is more of an undeclared buddy system to help them in the workplace especially if it is a small independent business, for example as a travel agency.

                        Job security 
                         Many job contracts are fixed term, especially in the tourist attractions jobs meaning that they must stay in their job role for a certain period of time normally ranging from six months to two years. Having a fixed contract increases job security as staff members do not need to worry about losing their job and the income which could demotivate their work performance and no need to worry.

                         All new staff members when they join a new organisation must go on an induction course and some kind of training. The induction is the first stage of training. The induction covers: what the job is, introduction to the workplace and meet the other staff members, what their roles and responsibilities would be, where the facilities are (toilets, locker room if needed and where the canteen or staff room is and the health and safety basics such as the fire exits and safe places and the rules of the company

                        Training opportunitiesThere are two different types of training opportunities: in house training and external courses. In house training is when the larger travel and tourism companies are able to hold training courses within the company location or just for the company in general (for example all employees doing a certain job role within the UK will go to the head office for a course). The courses are important and useful as the companies can create them to meet specific needs. External courses are when companies send their staff to courses outside of the company, the courses are normally held in colleges, trade associations and private companies. Travel and tourism organisations will send their employees to attend the courses as it will give the employees a qualification, depending on the course and how long it takes the qualification might be worth more. By having training opportunities, it motivates the staff as they will want to work as hard as they can in order to get the chance to do a course, as it will enhance their knowledge and gain more qualification whilst working for the same company

                        Appraisals Appraisals happen every year when travel and tourism companies decided to measure the performance of their staff. Appraisals are in the style of interview with each employee and team manager or head manager.  The things they discuss are: training needs, future job aspirations and how they staff member can improve to boost the work produced. Before the appraisal finishes, an action plan will be filled out to show how the employee can develop their skills and will be able to monitor each individual.  By having appraisals, it makes the staff motivated and creates a happy work place as everyone knows what they have to do in order to meet the companies’ objectives 

                        I will be reviewing how different travel and tourism organisations motivate staff in the workplace. The two companies I will be reviewing will be Virgin Atlantic and Thomas Cook

                        Virgin Atlantic 
                        Virgin Atlantic motivate their employees in different ways depending on the location and the jobs roles. First of all, they work out how to motivate around 10,000 employees who work in 30 different countries. 

                        Having flexible working arrangements motivates the staff as if they need to have a half or a whole day off work for personal reasons they do not need to pretend to be ill as they can easily get their shift covered if someone else wants more money or swap shifts in general.
                        Virgin Atlantic also make sure all employees are working the correct amount of hours that are legal and that no one goes over their allowance (until over time pay is allowed and approved). The company also makes sure they offer employees a good sick pays depending on the job role and how the person will be off. 

                        Virgin Atlantic offer a lot of training opportunities in-house mainly to go on to a higher job role and progress within the company. By having training opportunities, it motivates the employees to go on the courses and gain extra qualifications they wouldn’t be able to get if they were working for a different company or unemployed. 

                        Virgin Atlantic make sure all of their staff members are comfortable enough to address any problems, queries all general talk to any other staff, managers or even Richard Branson himself. This motivates the staff as they know they are all treated the same without being looked down on or feel unequal in any way. 

                        The company motivates the cabin crew and pilots on the flights as they know if Richard Branson comes on the flight, they will be taken out for dinner with him. It motivates the people working on the aircraft as it is a chance to show they work responsibilities and duties to the owner and get rewarded for doing so. 

                        After six months working for the company, employees get given a discount card to get a certain amount off on: Virgin trains, Virgin holidays, Virgin gyms and Virgin salons (within airports). This motivates staff to stay at the company longer than six months in order to get the card, rather than getting after their induction as it will motivate the employee to work and stay at the company

                        To motivate workers who have children under the age of 16, the company offer childcare vouchers to spend on nursery’s, play groups, childminders of after school activities. This motivates employees who are a single parent, unable to drop or pick child up or just can not afford to pay a full childcare look after cost. 

                        By having award ceremonies, it motivates the staff to work hard every year to progress in their job and motivated to maximum their work productivity.  The people who win the awards (varying in different categories) get a prize which can be: an increase in wage, shopping vouchers, air miles, free flights to a certain location, free stay in a hotel in a certain location or a free package holiday 

                        As Virgin Atlantic are on the TV, Radio and have their own travel brochures the offer the chance to be one of the faces of the company to their employees. This motivates the staff because the more work they do, they increase their chances to be the face of the advert and be recognised. 

                        Thomas Cook
                        The informal way Thomas Cook motivate their staff is by praising them every time something good is done. This could be: when a travel agent books their first customers holiday, finally finish a course and get a qualification or done something useful that will help the branch/ The company in the future. 

                        During the 2012 Olympics and Paralympics, the company was given over three thousand tickets to the events for their staff, however the staff was only allowed to go if they had been a good employee for several months and always complete their workloads. 
                        This motivated the staff because they would have wanted to go see a sport game for free as it shows that the company values them. 

                        Having a shares plan for all of Thomas Cook employees motivated to stay at the company for a minimum of three years (how long the share plan is). The staff can pay in £50 to £200 every month and it comes out of their wages. 
                        The company have the shares plan to motivate the employees to put away some of their money as an investment as they will not lose any just gain the money back and up to 20% more. 

                        Thomas Cook give staff bonuses and offer short breaks frequently as a sign of recognition to those who deserve it. 
                        The employees know there is a chance of extra money or receiving a short break which means that they will work harder to show that they are suitable for either prize making them more motivated to beat their other team members 

                        I will be analysing factors which contribute to an effective workplace and highlighting the good practices of Virgin Atlantic and Thomas Cook   

                        By having certain legislations in the workplace it allows everyone to work equally. For example, not all pilots on aircrafts are male and air hostesses are female. Both Virgin Atlantic and Thomas Cook treat both genders the same, no matter what the job role is they have applied for or progressing on to a higher job role. 
                        This contributes to having an effective workplace because it allows their employees to work in any job role they want to no matter of their gender.   

                        Staff Motivation 
                        Both of the companies motivate their staff by offering them free or discounted flights with the airline depending on the season, location going to and how many people are going on the flight.
                        They also motivate their staff by giving them chance to enter and win competitions such as: a free short break, gift vouchers or tickets to an event (sport or music concert for example)
                        This contributes to an effective workplace because it helps the employees to want to work for the company for the free flights and the chance to win a competition

                        Training and opportunities for promotions 
                        Thomas Cook offer three different types of training jobs in different locations in the world. 
                        The one in Germany is an apprenticeship for school leavers and has received an education award for making the students to go onto the Thomas Cook apprenticeship. The UK and Ireland apprenticeship is for people aged 16-18, they get a qualification and a job at the same time, producing hard workers wanting to progress into senior roles. The third training job scheme is in India where travel and tourism students go on placements to different branches as stay there for three to six months. 
                        Thomas Cook and Virgin also offer training courses for their employees if it will benefit them in their current job role or want to gain another qualification so they can progress in their job role to become a more senior person. 
                        This contributes to a positive work place as it allows people to get job whilst gaining the vital experience needed and carry on doing qualifications to earn a promotion. 

                        Both Virgin Atlantic and Thomas Cook offer discounts to their staff after the probation has finished (normally a year) or once they have finished their apprenticeship.

                        Virgin Atlantic offer their employees a good discount on all virgin related products and discounts at airports if they need to eat, drink or buy any products).  Virgin Atlantic also offer immediate employees family free or discounted flights. 

                        Thomas Cook also offer discounts on their holidays for staff and their friends and families.

                        This contributes to a positive workplace as it boosts staff morale as the employees feel valued and get discounts at the same time as working for a company they enjoy. 

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