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Business Update – September 2021

CCO, Cressida Sergeant

I can hardly believe that it’s the September edition of Tektalk. I so vividly remember writing in September last year, how pleased I was to see some normality returning with the start of the new school term. Only for it to very shortly lived. I, like all of you are hoping not to see a repeat of this during the latter part of 2021.

I’ve been really encouraged in the last few weeks when speaking to so many of our UK customers to hear that trading has been more buoyant in recent weeks after another tough July. We have seen from our stats in August that its been the first month we are level on 2019 bookings. Cruise in particular is extremely strong for forward bookings and really strong from Q2 2022 onwards. Whilst it remains a very fragile market with many unknowns potentially still out there, there remains no doubt in my mind that people are desperate to travel.

Its been hard listening to our teams in APAC who are now enduring painful 3 month lockdowns and struggling with their vaccination programmes. Australia have achieved about 39.7% of their population receiving both doses, so they need a real focus in the next 4 months to achieve the aggressive targets they have set for themselves by the end of the year.

Data Insights

The data product is not only interesting for us, but we hope many of you will also see the value in the data we are producing and this month we are launching this data insights product in the UK market. Existing Traveltek customers can sign up for a discounted rate and receive this product into their inboxes each month. The data consists of destination metrics, booking % verses 2019 (as we felt v 2020 wasn’t very helpful) and shows how far in advance people are booking. It also tracks the family v couple demographic. For more info email datainsights@traveltek.net

Recruitment

As mentioned several times this year, we have continued our recruitment drive. This month Tom Davies our new Digital Marketing Manager has joined my team and I’m delighted to say that he has plans for a revamp of Tektalk, so watch out for improvements in the coming months. We are still to hire a number of senior developers into our V2 programme but we achieved our first milestone on our V2 product in August and we now turn our attention to our cruise product as our next milestone.

During our product webinar on September 8th. Stuart our COO and Leanne our Head of Product, will talk you through the team’s achievement so far with our architecture, flight search results and our next steps on the plan. I appreciate for many of you, you are wanting dates but the foundations we have built have put us into a good place and now we need to understand if our plans are feasible with certain time frames. More information on this in our next product update. We will be carrying out product feedback sessions with some customers during September and we would like to give all customers the opportunity to work on assisting us with the V2 product over the next 18 months.

System Performance

System performance remains strong, and I’m pleased to share that yet again in August we have achieved our 80% SLA goal for time to resolution on our tickets.  In August 578 tickets were raised and we resolved 517 support and maintenance tickets, this was +18% on July and was certainly reflective of an increase in system usage. Last month we said we would tackle some of the backlog and we have managed to reduce historical tickets by 9 days in the last 4 weeks too.  System stability was 100% for the month of August and our new tooling in this area has clearly made a difference to us. During August we also had a lot of team annual leave and also gave our UK staff an extra day off on Friday 27th August for a 4 day bank holiday weekend as a reward for all their efforts this year. So to see the stats in this area looking positive, is great news. Our CSAT score was 4.3 for August.

This month we have also been doing some improvements to our cancellation policies in our Cruise API, for more info on this contact your account manager. In the supplier integration world we have delivered 3DV2 for worldpay and also completed some mandatory work for RCCL cruise. Many jobs are still due to go live due to annual leave within our teams also our suppliers during August, so September is expected to be a much busier month for our supplier team.

Thank you to everyone who took the time to complete our NPS survey, the results are now in and we move 2 spots in a negative direction for the last 6 months. Whilst as Traveltek we have been driving for positive momentum with our improvements in this area, our gains in the last 2 surveys did mean I was expecting this dip to come. Mainly the feedback has been around several area’s. Solving complex tickets quicker, which we have been addressing through recruitment and training. Secondly around the timescales with our new build, so again I feel transparency here is our best course of action.

The last area of feedback from the survey has been around system improvements that we would be making and of course we will be supporting our customers with maintaining your current systems to the best of our ability.

As always, thank you for your continued support and I hope September is a strong trading month for you all.

If you have any questions about anything mentioned in this month’s Tektalk, please do not hesitate to contact your Account Manager who will be happy to help.

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