Last updated: 24.03.14

Hotel using e-learning to teach staff of other cultures

A hotel is using online resources in a novel way, as part of an attempt to ensure that its staff are well versed in the cultural differences between Australian and Chinese guests.

In order to ensure that it is best placed to maximise from an influx of guests from the Far East, antipodean chain Rydges Hotel has turned to digital learning techniques in order to train its staff on new services that will cater specifically to the needs of Chinese guests.

Under the terms of its 'Nin Hao' programme, establishments under the brand will include a number of new drives designed to make guests from China feel as at home as possible. 

This includes everything from providing free-to-air Chinese TV channels to special menus for breakfast including congee stations that will be familiar to travellers from the Far East.

The hotel has also installed a China Union payment system and produced a special brochure kit in Chinese, as well as hiring staff that can speak Cantonese or Mandarin. However, in order for the scheme to be successful, Rydges' top brass is determined that all customer-facing staff know it inside and out.

To this end, all senior hotel managers and staff are now required to undertake an e-learning programme that will educate them on the specific cultural characteristics of guests from China and how best to cater for them as a result.

Alicia Corsar, director of brand development at Rydges, said: "Beyond mainland China, Rydges is also focusing on a long term strategy catering to all Chinese speaking guests. Australia's top-ten most valuable inbound tourism markets are within Asia."

This is a good example of how businesses can use online training tools that are inherently flexible to keep staff up to date with the latest industry developments. Virtual College supplies over 300 hotels with a range of online courses including our popular food hygiene course, which has been supplied to over 180,000 people across the various food services sectors.