National Trust Case Study
The National Trust is one of Europe’s most successful conservation organisations . As part of the Trust’s extensive Volunteering programme, it runs around 400 Working Holidays every year throughout England, Wales and Northern Ireland. Whether it’s carrying out a survey of moorland plants or herding goats to drystone walling or organic gardening there is something to suit just about everyone and all in stunning countryside or coastal locations.
Typical working holidays, which can be of either a week’s duration or just a few days, consist of up to a dozen or so volunteers. Accommodation is generally in dormitory style basecamps and the holidays are led by trained leaders, who are themselves volunteers.
The Working Holidays can be booked online, by phone or mail.
In the lead up to 2000, the Trust identified the need to have a new computerised booking system developed. At the same time, it recognised that the size of the programme and the number of participants had outgrown the capacity of the in-house team.
It was also recognised that the complexity of the communications required with volunteers, leaders, properties, regional and national management called for something more sophisticated than might be expected by the volumes involved.
The National Trust appointed OpenContact to develop a booking and administration system and also chose to outsource to them all of the contact handling with volunteers, together with the administration and communication relating to volunteers bookings and payments.
This enabled the Trust to provide a significantly enhanced service to its volunteers and gave the Trust much greater management information than had been available before. This in turn contributed to better planning of future working holiday programmes and marketing.
Booking system development & maintenance
Brochure request handling & fulfilment
Brochure storage, mailing & bulk deliveries
Enquiry & booking handling by post, phone & internet
Fulfilment of joining instructions and confirmations
Communication with all Working Holiday stakeholders
Handling holiday cancellations & refunds
Accommodation reconfiguration & wait list management
Interfacing online booking request system