How can the world’s best be the worst?

How can the world’s best be the worst?

I am just back from a long overseas holiday and enjoyed the wonderful differences and equally, our similarities as humans, across various parts of the world.

One of these occured at the Musee du Louvre, arguably one of the greatest museums in the world, certainly one of the largest, and apparently the most visited.  This was my first time here and I really loved the place, but there was one part that I didnt love….their IT facilities.  Yes, even when I was on holidays, I was working, it’s true.

I am referring to the IT facilities they provide to their clients (visitors) in the form of their electronic guides, an audio and visual handheld Nintendo device which guides you through the museum, tells you about exibits etc etc..

I consider myself fairly tech savvy when it comes to dealing with tech devices, but I struggled, really I did, they were hard to use…confusing…misleading.  Both Patsy and I had one.  It took me a while but I did manage to navigate through their hard to use screens to get both of our devices to a place where it tracks us through the museum.  I held them side by side walking through the Louvre under the Pyramid, heading to where I thought we wanted to go, only to have both devices say we were in different places in the Museum and going in different directions.  It was at this point I packed them in the bag and gave up.  The old school paper map became my friend.

When we finished our visit, I handed these Nintendo devices back in and provided some feedback.  Initially the response was a standard “OK, thanks”, but I said a little more firmly “No, they are really bad, hard to use and confusing”. I then got a great bout of honesty, being told “Yes, we know, none of the customers like them, many of us staff cannot use them.  They were from Head Office.  They never come down here, they dont know what its like to use them here.”  Wow, I just discovered a big crack in that organisation with minimal effort apart from the 5 Euro a piece they charge for them!

If I compare that to MONA (Museum of New and Old Art) in Tasmania, the IT and device support is superb, easy to use, playful, interactive, it really adds to the experience, and at no extra charge.  Plus you can revisit your experience afterwards online via their web site…just superb.

We all know that customer service is crucial today, but how much do you know about the way your IT is supporting or restricting your clients from having a great experience.  And how often have you asked for an honest view from those who interact with your customers every day.  Clearly The Louvre, despite them being a museum for over 200 years, still have things to learn.

Maybe they could call David Walsh’s team at MONA, I am sure they would be happy to help.  And from what I know about David, I am sure he could cut a nice volume based pay as you go deal for The Louvre too.

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