Did you realise how easy it is to get in touch with one of our reps when you’re on holiday? If you need us, for whatever reason, you don’t have to wait until your rep is visiting your hotel in order to speak to someone. In fact, our Connected Service means that we’re here for you 24/7 throughout your holiday, giving you complete peace of mind while you’re away.
To tell you a bit more about our Connected & Resort Service, I spoke to Business Development and Transformation Coordinator, Annelien Schoormans, and Service Manager, Mike Pink, who’ve shared everything you need to know about what the service offers.
Is there a difference between a Connected Consultant and a Service Rep?
A: A Connected Consultant works in one of the three offices of the Connected Service and helps all customers in all destinations. Anyone that books their holiday with Thomas Cook, package or otherwise, is served by the Connected Service.
A Service Rep works in one of our destinations and is responsible for the holidaymakers in that particular place. The rep will welcome you at the airport, visit certain hotels, do a Let’s Meet, etc.
M: Service Reps are available in person on your holiday and will offer advice, support and information face-to-face. Connected Consultants are available to you through different ways such as phone, SMS, Whatsapp, email, Skype, FaceTime and via Facebook. They look after a wide range of customers, whereas a Service Rep will take care of the holidaymakers in their own destination or region and will be knowledgeable in that particular area.
How can I find out if my hotel has a rep or not?
A: You won’t know if a rep will be visiting your hotel or not until you arrive at your destination. But we still offer a full service to you, no matter which hotel you’re staying at. Everyone receives a 24/7 service from the Connected Service through the different ways of getting in touch that Mike mentioned above. We’re one team that helps each other out and makes sure we can give the best overall service to you, our customers.
When you arrive at the airport, you’ll receive an invite to the Let’s Meet. On this invite, you can see which hotel the meeting takes place in and, if you want, you can go along. In each hotel, you’ll get an information book or there’ll be a board with everything you’ll need to know from Connected Services. If a rep is visiting the hotel, the visiting hours will also be displayed there. From this summer, we’ll also offer ‘rep on demand’, which means we’ll have flexible reps that can visit you whenever needed.
M: You can also sometimes see if a hotel has a rep by checking the added benefits logos in the brochure or on the website.
How can I get hold of a Connected Consultant if I need to while on holiday?
A: The information for the Connected Service is provided for you at different moments during your holiday; from when you book to when you’re there. Some details are already mentioned in your pre-departure documents, which you’ll receive once you’ve booked. Then when you arrive at your destination, you’ll get the welcome pack with the full details of the Connected Service, plus you’ll find the details in the information book or on the board in your hotel.
M: On arrival in your resort, every party will receive a contact card that’ll detail the seven methods of contact; Skype, Whatsapp, text, call, FaceTime, web chat, Facebook and email. And, as Annelien said, all hotels will have a branded Thomas Cook information book and/or notice board. This’ll have an A4 page that details all the different contact methods.
Is there a way to see a rep on holiday, if there isn’t one at my hotel?
A: You’re free to visit any other hotel where a rep is visiting at any point during your holiday, even if you have a rep in your own hotel. Otherwise you can contact Connected Service. Then, depending on the issue or question, we can arrange a meeting with the rep.
M: Yes, if you wish to see a resort team member, then you can contact Connected Service or visit a nearby Thomas Cook hotel (you’ll find these details in the Let’s Meet invitation), as Annelien said, or you can ask your hotel reception to contact the resort office for you.
As a Connected Consultant, what does a typical day have in store?
A: Every day is different for a Connected Consultant. To cover 24/7, we work different shifts and have different tasks. During the shift, we’re responsible for a range of things; it can be either to answer phone calls or answer the Whatsapp messages, etc. Depending on the queries, it’ll change the flow of the day.
Have you ever worked in-resort before? If so, where?
A: I started as an admin in Lanzarote for my first summer and winter. After that, the Connected Service started and I started working there as a Connected Consultant. Then three years after, I worked as a Senior in the Connected Service in Majorca and Antalya. Since August 2016, I’ve been working in the Thomas Cook head office in Peterborough.
M: I started with Thomas Cook as a Service Rep in Kos and Zante. I developed into a Head Rep and completed a summer in Antalya, where I met Annelien and the rest of the Connected team in this office. I went on to do a summer and winter season in Lanzarote in the same role level, before heading to Lapland the following winter. My next season was in Majorca, until I entered a more senior role as Service Manager and moved to the neighbouring island of Menorca for summer 2017. I’m currently supporting the Customer Experience team in our head office in Peterborough, before I move back to Menorca again for the coming season.
What are the benefits for holidaymakers of having a Connected & Resort Service?
A: We give you 24/7 support whenever you need it, in whichever way you prefer to get in touch. This could be by a phone call, text message or face-to-face. You’re able to contact us when it suits you and you don’t need to wait until a rep is visiting a hotel, as we’re always here to support you.
M: The Connected team offer an on-demand service and they’re able to access a multitude of systems and get all the advice and help you might need. They can assist with complaints or problems and offer the best solutions and outcomes. They’re available 24 hours a day, seven days a week across a number of different channels. They can, and will, communicate with resort and are able to access your customer information that a Service Rep isn’t able to.
Connected Consultants offer the same level of service as a Service Rep, except they’re more readily available.
What’s the best thing about being a Connected Consultant?
A: Every day is different and you never know what your shift is bringing you. We work together with colleagues from different countries and we work together as a team to create the best service for you. At the same time, we’re living in a different culture and exploring a different country.
M: The Connected Service are a diverse team who speak multiple languages and have opportunities to help and even surprise holidaymakers, making sure we keep the customer at our heart. Our Connected team are able to speak to you in your preferred method and it’s amazing that they have the function to offer a face-to-face option virtually through Skype and FaceTime.