You can create positive social change beyond the services and experiences you offer visitors.

There are many ways your business can help your wider community.

1. Contribute to your community

Earn the trust and support of your community by working with local people and organisations.

  • Support local causes, such as conservation, cultural or sporting groups or non-for-profit organisations. Support doesn't have to be financial—you can volunteer your time or services.
  • Get involved with your local tourism network or business group like a chamber of commerce.
  • Work with other tourism businesses to promote your region and each other.
  • Employ local residents and give them opportunities to develop their skills.
  • Find ways to reduce your environmental impact and respect local customs and traditions.

2. Be accessible and inclusive

Your employees and visitors come from many different backgrounds, with different life experiences, skills and abilities.

To be successful, you must understand and meet their diverse needs.

You need to consider diversity and inclusion in every part of your business, and through your recruitment process.

Equal opportunity employment has a range of benefits, including:

  • better employee performance and productivity
  • improved employee health and wellbeing
  • less workplace complaints
  • a better understanding of different cultures
  • access to new markets and opportunities.

Find out what you need to do for equal opportunity and diversity.

Making your products or services more accessible to visitors can open new and valuable markets for your business.

People with accessibility needs include those with physical, sensory and cognitive impairments that may not be visible. Older people and parents of young children may also have accessibility needs.

To help visitors with accessible needs, make sure you:

  • become familiar with accessibility obligations and best practices
  • provide infrastructure and assistance
  • train your employees on the needs of people with accessibility needs.

Example of accessibility and inclusion

Business X is in the middle of a busy central business district. With a diverse customer base, the café took the following steps to make their space more welcoming and accessible to customers:

  • Installed an entrance ramp, allowing easier access for customers using wheelchairs, mobility aids or prams.
  • Added information to their website about how to get there, including parking options and entrance details.
  • Updated their website to meet web accessibility standards.
  • Renovated a bathroom to be gender-neutral and accessible.
  • Installed changing tables in a bathroom for caregivers with young children.
  • Trained employees on accessibility and inclusivity, including disability awareness and communication techniques.

3. Create a great place to work

Attracting, hiring and retaining good employees is critical to providing quality visitor experiences.

To create a great place to work:

  • employ people on fair and legal terms and pay them appropriately
  • create a safe working environment free from physical risks, bullying and harassment
  • understand the cultural and religious beliefs of your employees, and how this might impact their work or undertake specific duties
  • provide opportunities for development and training
  • provide flexible and consistent work hours
  • consider more financial and non-financial rewards such as bonuses, discounts or social activities
  • recognise good work through employee awards, announcements at meetings or team celebrations.

4. Attract visitors at the right time

Seasonality is the peaks and troughs of visitor demand through the year.

If you don’t manage seasonality, it can affect your business, your employees and your community through labour shortages and overcrowding. It can also change how liveable your destination is.

Your local tourism organisation can help you manage seasonality. For example, by extending the shoulder season through events or special offers.

You can also consider these steps:

  • Understand who your visitors are and when and why they travel. This helps you identify opportunities to reduce peaks and increase appeal in the off-season.
  • Review your experiences and create new offers to encourage visitors in shoulder and low seasons.
  • Educate your visitors on the local area, the sustainability challenges it faces during peak times and the benefits of off-season travel.

5. Manage your supply chain

Your supply chain is all of the individuals, organisations, resources, materials, services, activities and technology that help you create your product or service.

Carefully managing your supply chain helps you:

  • decrease risk
  • save money
  • minimise environmental impact
  • strengthen community relationships.

At a minimum, ask your suppliers these questions:

  • What are your sustainability commitments (or policy)?
  • What are you doing to reduce any negative environmental and social impacts?
  • What is your carbon footprint?

Was this page helpful?