Monday, July 21, 2008

When You're Here, You're Family

This story is a couple weeks old, but I couldn't resist commenting on it. The NBC affiliate in Providence did a story where they called the Rhode Island Department of Tourism's toll-free number and asked a variety of rudimentary questions about Rhode Island and discovered that the people answering the calls knew next to nothing about the state. For example, when asked where one could find a good Italian meal in Rhode Island, the operator recommended the Olive Garden in South Attleboro, MA. The calls were being handled by a call center in Kansas City, MO so it's not surprising that the people fielding them knew nothing about Rhode Island.

In defense of the Department of Tourism's outsourcing choice, the toll-free number is not designed to be a tourist hotline; its only purpose is to allow potential visitors to request a travel guide. That being said, they probably should set up a second level of support staffed by people with local knowledge to assist callers who had questions about their visit to Rhode Island.

1 comment:

Matthew said...

In fairness, that's a pretty good Olive Garden.