It has been a month for Clapham's International Clock Museum to celebrate, gaining its international Qualmark Certifications and attracting a record 330 visitors to its open day.
“The open day was a great event and I hope it, along with our Qualmark Certificate, will inspire people to bring their visitors along when they come to Whangarei,” said Clapham’s Clocks Team Leader Silke Groot-Magens.
Qualmark is an internationally recognised grading system for tourism operators. “It provides a star grading system for tourism companies to use to judge the kind of experience their clients will have when they visit us. We are now listed with Qualmark and we hope that this move will attract bus tours, as well as independent travellers.
Qualmark is jointly owned by Tourism New Zealand and the New Zealand Automobile Association and backed by leading industry organisations.
The programme is run as a service to the New Zealand tourism industry on a not-for-profit basis. There are now over 2,100 tourism businesses carrying a Qualmark and each benefits from not only improving business practices and building capability but also the credibility and visibility offered by the Qualmark logos.
“The certification process assessed all aspects of our operation including emergency and safety procedures, fire alarms and insurance cover, the soundness of the building, staff training and employment contracts.”
Mrs Groot-Magens said Qualmark representative, Ron Russell, visited the museum’s website, Facebook and trip advisor sites before visiting as a mystery shopper.
“He checked how we manage donations, how we handle the collection and checked our knowledge about the museum and the clocks against the ICOMOS standards (International Council of Monuments and Sites). Issues like recycling, environmental awareness make up some points too.
“We scored 73%, well clear of the 60% minimum pass rate, and we will be receiving a report mentioning points for improvement, so we can achieve a higher rating in future. Ron has already provided some advice about how to gain more exposure and make the most of free opportunities available to us.
“The rating has boosted our morale and staff feel proud to be working at the museum. We will be displaying the Qualmark logo at the museum and adding it to our letterheads.”