University offers free training to boost tourism

“This event is a great opportunity to network, share knowledge and update your skills. We're coming up to the busiest period in the tourism calendar so it's a great time to learn new ways to boost your business this summer.”

Jon Fairburn, Professor of Sustainable Development

Businesses involved in tourism are being invited to find out about new ways to boost trade ahead of the summer season at a free conference hosted by Staffordshire University.

Jon Fairburn, Professor of Sustainable Development, explained: “Tourism is booming locally and nationally however many people go into the industry with no experience or training which results in a high drop-out rate.

“We have been working on a project called SMARTOUR which offers support and training so that people can develop their skills and progress in the industry.”

Jon and other experts the Business School have been collaborating with partners in Italy, Finland and Greece on the EU funded project and carried out an international survey with managers and staff in the tourism sector to identify the topics that matter to them most.

The project team have produced a set of learning materials based on these findings, including an online training toolkit, and are inviting tourism workers to find out more at a free conference on  Wednesday 17 May.

Jon said: “This event is a great opportunity to network, share knowledge and update your skills. We're coming up to the busiest period in the tourism calendar so it's a great time to learn new ways to boost your business this summer.”

The day involves interactive workshops on a range of topics including customer service, energy saving and social media. There will also be talks from Staffordshire University experts and the owners of Staffordshire's best rated hotel, Colton House, which has won a host of accolades including Green Tourism and Gold Tourism Awards from Enjoy Staffordshire and Visit England.

“We have some fantastic hotels, B&Bs and tourist attractions across the county. It's vital that we nurture local businesses and with Stoke-on-Trent bidding to become UK City of Culture this is more important than ever.”

Jon added: “The event isn't just for those in the local area, however, and we would welcome tourism workers from across the country.”

Tourism Management the 'Smart' Way takes places from 9am to 1pm on Wednesday 17 May at the Ashley Building, Staffordshire University, Leek Road, ST4 2DF.

Find more information and book your place here.

*The Sustainable Manager in Tourism Sector (SMARTOUR) project is co-funded by the Erasmus+ programme of the European Union. Find out more on the SMARTOUR project website here.