JIS News

Individuals and organisations that have given exceptional service within the tourism industry, will be recognised and rewarded at the sector’s inaugural staging of the Tourism Service Excellence Awards (TSEA), which will take place during the 2008/09 winter tourist season.
Speaking with JIS News, Director of Tourism Facilitation at the Ministry of Tourism, Tina Williams, said the event is expected to be “a glamorous and glitzy affair, which will recognise the best in the industry.”
“The awards are really geared towards every single level within the tourism industry. So, if you are a red cap porter, taxi driver, the manager in a hotel, waiter, or work at the front desk, you are eligible. It is for anyone who has to interface with a visitor at any level within the tourism industry,” Ms. Williams pointed out.
She added that awards and certificates of merits would be presented to organisations and individuals, who have continuously upgraded themselves, in terms of hospitality training and their ability to provide efficient service to the guests.
“We want to identify persons who exhibit extraordinary responsiveness to the visitors, those who show creativity and demonstrate that they have a one-of-a-kind service to offer,” the Director highlighted.
Ms. Williams said that the inaugural staging of the awards was part of the Ministry’s Tourism Service Excellence Programme, (TSEP), which sought to enhance the industry’s delivery of service to visitors.
The programme is geared towards promoting excellence within the sector, in order to improve the competitiveness of the local tourism product in the global marketplace.
This new initiative of the Ministry, Ms. Williams explained, comes against the background of a tremendous increase in the number of new hotel rooms and expected visitor arrivals over the next five years.
“We are expecting to almost double our hotel room stock within that time period, and we want to increase the number of jobs to over 45,000 as well and so, what the new tourism demands is highly skilled, efficient, and competent human resource capital, to deliver the utmost in personalised, high quality customer service,” she explained.
Nomination booklets and forms for the TSEA, can be obtained at any of the six offices of the Tourism Product Development Company (TPDCo). Forms may also be downloaded from the TPDCo and Jamaica Tourist Board (JTB) websites. The deadline for nominations is September 30, 2008.