Just as commercial and retailing operators are increasingly borrowing ideas from the arts, leisure and heritage sectors to compete more effectively, business management tools traditionally reserved for commercial enterprises are finding their way into the cultural and tourism sectors.
Benchmarking is a case in point. Over 30 small and medium sized attractions are taking part in the Hampshire and Dorset Attraction Benchmarking Scheme. Developed by the Southern Tourist Board and Locum Destination Consulting, in association with local partnerships, the project focuses on processes that impact on visitor satisfaction and financial health – areas of critical importance to virtually all visitor attractions.
YTB ran a similar scheme in North Yorkshire in 2000 comprising 20 attractions funded by European Social Fund Objective 5b. Encompassing a self completion survey element, site visit by L&R Consulting and culminating in a one day workshop the project proved to me extremely useful for all involved.