Published on Thursday, November 7, 2019

Hays to host biggest conference in its history


Hays Travel will hold the biggest conference of its 39-year history next month following its acquisition of Thomas Cook's high street stores.

Over 700 retail branch managers, assistant managers and head office colleagues have been invited to the 2019 Retail Conference in Antalya, Turkey from November 12 to 16.

Last month, Hays Travel Independence Group called off its autumn conference, which was also meant to take place in Turkey, at the Rixos Sungate Resort, following Thomas Cook's collapse, saying it was too busy saying it was too busy dealing with customers who were impacted.

Hays said this month's five-day event, to be attended by Hays' owners, MD and chair John and Irene Hays, has attracted a keynote speaker 'from a globally-known company'.

Hays said the conference will also welcome some of the 2,000 colleagues who have joined in the last weeks following the retailer's takeover of the former Thomas Cook stores.

There will be a blue-and-orange-themed reception, a gala awards dinner, and a fancy dress party with a West End shows theme.

Retail and training director Jane Schumm said: "We are so delighted to make our conference the biggest ever this year. It's a fantastic opportunity, just four weeks after we welcomed Thomas Cook colleagues into the family, to get to know each other, celebrate, learn a lot and have loads of fun.

"Our conferences are legendary but this one is going to be really special on a scale we've never done before.

"Even the branch managers who've been before are in for some surprises. Its action packed with really useful information for branch managers to take back to the business and there's the chance to share experiences and learn from what's happening at branches all over the country.

"There will be supplier matchmaking events, networking opportunities and workshops to get involved in as well as presentations from colleagues and senior managers from across the business.

"We also take the chance to recognise, reward and celebrate all the hard work and dedication of our managers over the past year, and thank those who joined so quickly and moved mountains to help us get their shops back up and running.

"We have had to move fast to reorganise everything to more than double the numbers in just two weeks and we are very grateful to our sponsors and suppliers for all the help they're giving us.

"I can't wait to see everyone having a good time and enjoying themselves in Turkey and taking back loads of new information to their branches."

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