Located in the eastern of Indonesia, West Papua is rich in biodiversity, nature, and culture. Biodiversity and culture become the major tourism assets in West Papua. With the availability of biodiversity and culture, the government can develop tourist attractions in West Papua. The development requires synergy and cooperation from all parties to make it succeed. However, the utilization of those main assets is not optimum yet.
Besides the utilization of the assets, the quality of workers in West Papua has not met the demand yet. They still lack the knowledge, skill, and attitude to provide the best service for the tourists. The government, tourist management, stakeholders, and operators need to implement some strategies to improve the quality of the workers. Read the highlights of the strategies used in West Papua.
1. Involve the Workers in Tourist Management Activities
The key to improving the quality of workers is to involve them in tourist management activities in West Papua. The more they expose to the activities, they will have better knowledge and skill to build the communication and the link.
They will have a link to all tourism workers, operators, and stakeholders in West Papua. Furthermore, those activities also encourage them to be actively involved in promoting the products and commodities, garnering support from local people, carry out the preservation of biodiversity, natural resources, and cultures in West Papua Province.
2. Provide the Forum for Discussion and Social Dialog
Another strategy to conduct is to provide a forum for discussion and social dialog for all workers. The communication and synergy among all workers will improve the relationship and quality of employees. They are also ready to face a challenging work environment.
Furthermore, many local people work in the tourism industry in West Papua. They don’t receive formal education about tourist management skills and knowledge. This forum is such a perfect place to study, share the information, and do social dialog. This forum also creates an opportunity for having collaboration within the government, operators, stakeholders, and institutions.
All workers can create an online forum through online platforms like WhatsApp or Lines. The platform works as a medium to communicate, share, and discuss the issues of tourist management.
The forum of social dialog, which is held frequently, could also facilitate the regular consultation between operator or owner with workers as well as the overview of workers’ satisfaction and attitudes to pinpoint the concerns of the workers.
3. Legalize and Certify the Workers
Tourist guides, tour leaders, and guide leaders are the main workers in tourist management. Those professions play a crucial role in the success of the development of tourism in West Papua. To improve the quality they need to obtain legalization and certification.
Therefore, the government works together with related institutions: Indonesian National Certification Agency and the Indonesian Tourist Guide Association to legalize and certify tourist guides, tour leaders, and guide leaders. The workers should take the competency test. Once they pass the test, they will receive the certificate.
The purpose of legalization is to get recognition from the government in running the business. As a result, the tour leader can apply for a tour guide license easily. Meanwhile, the certification aims to figure out whether the tourist guides have met the standard requirements needed.
The tourist guides know how to convince the tourists that they are in safe hand. The great service will lead to the tourists’ satisfaction.
4. Increase the Capacity and Quality of Tourism Education Institution
West Papua still lacks some formal education institutions, especially those focusing on hospitality industry. This formal institution is essential in building up the human natural resources. Those who receive formal education will be able to work professionally. They gain knowledge and skills from professional lectures and mentors. They also experience job training.
5. Conduct Workshop and Training
Workers in the hospitality industry need to update their skills and knowledge. One of the ways to have updated skills and knowledge is by conducting workshops and training. The workshop and training program will increase their skills. The programs should also present professional and qualified trainers.
Furthermore, the workers need to build up a good relationship with the tourists to create a better work ethic. Therefore, it is expected that continuous training will help the workers to gain their self-confidence. Besides that, this program is useful to build up the attitude toward the tourists as well as to develop workers’ soft skills. Say, courtesy, language and communication skills, adaptability, and creativity.
In conclusion, the tourist guides, tour leaders, and guide leaders are the forefront workers of tourism in West Papua. They meet, build, and provide the service, security, and convenience to the tourists. One of the keys to tourists’ satisfaction is having qualified and professional workers. So, the implementation of the following strategies is essential to improve the quality and professionalism in West Papua.