2014-2015 Annual Report: Services
Serviced and hosted 613 groups (sports, meetings and conventions), achieved a 53.66-percent survey response rate with an overall scoring of 4.6 on a five-point scale, hosted 11,781 visitors in the official Visitor Information Center and fulfilled 4,003 other visitor information requests.
NEW SERVICE LAUNCHED
Launched a new collateral delivery service this year. Starting in Oct. 2014, began proactive delivery of visitor guides to primary hotel and attraction partners; reached a total of 257 partner visits and distributed 28,367 visitor guides through this channel.
NOTABLE GROUPS HOSTED
Hosted highly diverse groups including such notables as Jehovah's Witnesses (July and Aug. 2014), Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. (July 2014), N.C. Firemen's Association (Aug. 2014), Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Symposium on Electromagnetic Compatibility (Aug. 2014), Hopscotch Music Festival (Sept. 2014), International Bluegrass Music Association (Oct. 2014), Big Rock East (Jan. 2015), PLANET: National Student Landscape Competition (Mar. 2015), N.C. First Robotics Competition (Mar. 2015), Goodguys Rod and Custom Association Car Show (Apr. 2015), National Model A Restorers Club (May 2015), Lenovo Americas Sales and Support Kickoff (Apr. 2015) and Animazement (May 2015).
Provided significant servicing for IBMA's World of Bluegrass 2014. While serving on the Local Organizing Committee for the year prior to IBMA arrival in Raleigh, we coordinated community activation and hospitality services; at arrival we directly coordinated banners on primary downtown streets, hotels and venues; coordinated welcome services at RDU International Airport and at various venues; assisted in recruiting and facilitating over 300 volunteers; and operated our Visitor Information Center and Raleigh Convention Center mobile kiosks for expanded hours during the event.
BLUEGRASS MEANS BUSINESS MEETING
In preparation for IBMA 2015, hosted a meeting to educate the local business community on opportunities for activating and maximizing revenue during World of Bluegrass. Nearly 40 partners attended and learned about ways to host bluegrass events, creating special bluegrass deals and drawing attendance by combining bluegrass with their business for this special week.
SEE FOR YOURSELF (SFY) FAM TOURS
Continued the popular training program of SFY Fam Tours. The program offers front-line staff the opportunity to tour Raleigh with guides and learn more about all that the area has to offer visitors by "seeing it for yourself!" Three tours were offered in 2014-2015, and SFY Fam Tour themes this year included "Artful Activities and Experiences," "How Are Things Made" and "Meet and Eat."
TAXI DRIVERS ORIENTED
Worked cooperatively with the Raleigh Police Department to continue the taxi driver orientation program. During bimonthly classes, GRCVB orients the drivers on primary destination assets and resources available through GRCVB. The program averages 50 drivers per session and remains a popular customer service training opportunity.
Hosted 20 GRCVB Tourism Ambassadors at the annual "We Love Our Tourism Ambassadors" training and recognition event in Feb., held this year at Mordecai Historic Park. Highlights included updates on tools, resources and projects that impact the ambassadors, as well as tours of the park and also the updated City of Raleigh Museum (COR Museum). Ambassadors expand staffing resources for GRCVB's meetings, conventions and sports groups and are hugely important to the success of GRCVB in welcoming groups.
CUSTOMER CARE CLASSES
Continued our Customer Care for the Hospitality Industry customer service classes in partnership with Wake Technical Community College. In its seventh year, customer care classes have trained more than 800 students overall.
FORTIFY TOWN HALL MEETING
Partnered with the N.C. Department of Transportation to coordinate and host a town hall meeting in Dec. 2014 to educate the community on the benefits and impacts of the ongoing Fortify roadway improvement project. This meeting is part of an overall strategy to educate hospitality partners and event planners to be knowledgeable about the construction and minimize possible negatives by planning ahead.
EVENT SERVICE PROFESSIONALS ASSOCIATION (ESPA) AND GRCVB LUNCH AND LEARNS
Attended ESPA's annual convention in Jan. 2015, held in Chicago, Ill. This event helped to grow our professional servicing skills while keeping us up-to-date with industry trends. We also participated in monthly professional education webinars offered by ESPA. These webinars have been developed into monthly "Lunch and Learn" sessions for local servicing partners (from area hotels, venues and attractions).
CELEBRATE SERVICES DAY
Celebrated ESPA's Celebrate Services Day in Aug. by hosting an educational and networking event at Triangle Rock Club. The program included a professional education training webinar, lunch and a fun afternoon of rock climbing. Celebrate Services is an annual event that promotes the role of and value that event service professionals have in the events industry.