By Gour Kanjilal.
In the dynamic environment of Tourism business updating the knowledge levels, skills and analytical strength is very essential.
- As IATO, we had been organizing skill development programmes for various levels of officers in Tour Operators offices, Travel Agencies etc and especially for all those officials who come in direct contact with tourists on a daily basis.
- The programmes are focused on developing required skills and professional competence among entrepreneurs, corporate executives P.R officials and different levels of junior officials.
- Emphasis is given about dealing with tourists, update on the information about various guidelines, visa regulations and also risk management. These programmes benefit them as well as the organizations they serve.
- The main purpose is to ensure enhanced guest satisfaction. The focus is on skill development for all levels will eye on. Quality and Efficient Service to the clients.
- The message stands very clear. It is not only increase in sale but also to gain loyalty of the client and be knowledgeable about his needs, his understanding capacity that client is going back happy and is willing to come back. Thus skill development relates to personal responsibility that in turn relates to his performance, communication skills and his efforts for guest satisfaction.
- Most of the tour operators have understood that the good talent pool is must to create a cycle of high growth. If human talent is in place, the management can take care of other important work like global marketing, building additional works in the organization with better job opportunities, diversification of business products and financial stability.
- The study conducted by the associated chamber of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM) along with Yes Bank suggests a rapid growth of the tourism sector in India from 2011 onwards. The year 2011 is expected to be a boom period for the country's tourism sector that is speculated to become the second largest employer to the world by employing more than 40 million people by 2019.
- The huge influx of incremental rooms in India will result in more jobs. A total of 50,000 additional rooms are expected to become operational in India by 2013 across upscale, mid scale and economy category hotels and with an average of 7 people to serve in each star category rooms at a rough estimated we will need at least 350,000 trained man powers for servicing these hotels. Then the hospitality industry is also to stimulate investment and create opportunities in ancillary line of business - MICE, Entertainment, Festivals and all these segments will generate additional employment.
- With an extensive focus on Rural Tourism and, Agri-tourism, there will be job opportunities in rural areas. Thus tourism can boost job opportunities both in urban & rural areas which will bring drastic change in the economy through revenues and employment from tourism.
- The areas where jobs will be in addition than just farming are agri-museums with benefits for farm Vacations, Heritage Trails, Farm tours and farm activities, Agriculture related Festivals and Fairs, even Farmer Markets, Local Cuisine, and Handcrafts etc will get limelight with jobs opportunities.
- Similarly wellness and Medical Tourism, (though very professional skills are needed) hold huge potential to create employment. This sector is showing rapid growth and have opportunities in ancillary business like post surgery Nursing, Holiday Packages for patients for Recuperating after Surgery Pharmaceuticals, Para-Medical and Support help like Supply of Fruits, Flowers and Transport Services. It can really create jobs in millions if proper skills are developed for this special service industry.
- Cruise tourism is now another segment which can generate employment in thousands. For offering a positive experience it needs services of specialists Engineers, Chefs, Doctors, Entertainers, Security and allows direct involvement of all of them for its successful operations.
- Niche Tourism products like Adventure tourism, Spiritual Tourism, Sports Tourism, Photo Safaris, Gourmet January's palaces & Forts and Luxury livingeach segments needs special skill development and hold long term sustainable jobs.
- Nodoubt in routine the jobs are available in Government ministry - centre & state tourism departments. Tourism field offices in India and overseas tourism Institutes, tour operators, airlines supplementary accommodation. We need to do skill development programmes on a regular basis. In the new budget 2011-12 the government providing huge allocation for education skill development fund is very reassuring. This will give our youngsters new hope for jobs. Such steps will help accelerate the process of inclusive growth.
- There are many more areas like Advertisements P.R, Guides Interpretation & translation services, printing where jobs are available and all these areas are directly linked with tourism.
- The need is that tourism should get due priority more availability of fund tax incentives as it can create jobs even in distant place where other industries can't reach. Tourism is rightly called " every body's business and every body can get the benefits by joining its like services.24*7 service and need huge manpower both technical and non-technical to service tourism plant. Do it now & take your share or you miss the train.