Improving customer services at Samoa Ports Authority

PR- The Samoa Ports Authority (S.P.A.) has completed a two-day Customer Service Training for its frontline employees.

Held at S.P.A. Conference Room at Matautu-tai on the 3rd and 4th May 2018, the training was to initiate a process of rapid improvement, by means of achieving a shared understanding of the correct customer service methods that the authority needs to employ, in order to achieve their stated goals.

Strategically, such plan attaches solidly to the authority’s vision and mission not only  in terms of creating employees capacity building programs; establishing a well-structured and responsive relationship between the authority and its employees, but most importantly its external customers.

Therefore, in training such as customer service, guarantees that S.P.A. manages port services to meet the needs of customers and in return securing the customers and the community’s support.

The training was made possible through a partnership between the Samoa Ports Authority (S.P.A.) and the Small Business Enterprise Centre (S.B.E.C.). 

The Small Business Enterprise Centre has stepped up to take the lead to boost the morale of S.P.A. employees. The participants are employees who have “evolved” into frontline position by virtue of an organisation growing, over the years, and by virtue of their own natural ability. 

They now find themselves being expected to work on the front line, and help with the provision of the job itself. In addition to doing the work, they must contend with people issues, time management issues, leadership and morale issues, for which they may not have had sufficient training.

Now, they have a good course that will give them sound and practical guidance on how to get the best performance from themselves.

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College hosts Samoan language week

Samoa College will mark its inaugural Samoan language week in a bid to draw its students’ attention to the country’s cultural practices and customs. College Principal Karene Faasisila, Vice Principal and staff are behind the week-long program of activities that also include the ava ceremony and cultural formalities (folafola sua, folafola toana’i, folafolaga saumolia, sula toga). According to Taumaloto Kaisa, who is a teacher at Samoa College, the program involves the whole school and doesn’t just target the teaching staff. "The college’s principal, Karene Faasisila, vice-principal and staff have initiated a Samoan Week activity not only to end off another academic term but also to highlight the importance of Samoan practices to the students," he told Samoa Observer in an interview. "The program isn’t only for the teachers teaching Samoa or is limited to students who only take Samoa. It involves the whole school with the aim of emphasising Samoan cultural practices because we have seen that some students haven’t experienced most of our practices." The week-long program this week comprises five main categories of activities that will run until Thursday. Category 1 activities highlight the importance of Samoan literacy through speech competitions, impromptu speech competitions, spelling competitions and debates. Category 2 focuses on cultural formalities such as the ava ceremony and others (folafola sua, folafola toana’i, folafolaga saumolia, sula toga) and Category 3 is Samoan sports and games such as cricket, collecting coconuts and weaving baskets. Mr Kaisa said it is important students experience and participate in Samoan sports and games in order to find out more about their origins. "The importance of students experiencing these sports is because there are a few Samoan statements that derive from Samoan games which are incorporated in speeches and formalities,” he added. "It’s important that the students experience these sports so that they’ll know where these statements come from and what it practically means. "The fourth category is a demonstration of handcrafting, weaving and printing. Students are taught on how to weave various Samoan crafts (ma’ilo, polavai, polasisi)." Students would learn the art of weaving an ietoga (Samoan traditional fine mat) and instead of tapa-making, consequently Mr Kaisa said the college had found it difficult locating an expert in that area who could teach the students which is why the elei printing activity was added. All the four categories will be implemented Monday to Thursday before the staff and student body converge on the college hall on Friday where there will be traditional performances with classes competing against each other.

By Hyunsook Siutaia 30/09/2020
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