Online technology the way of the future
BULLER Ski Lifts (BSL) was represented at a recent public inquiry into the opportunities for people to use telecommuting and E-Business to Work Remotely in Rural and Regional Victoria.
BSL’s general manager, Laurie Blampied, and head of IT, Jonathon Cotterill, made a presentation to the parliamentary inquiry on the needs and accessibility of telecommunications on Mt Buller.
Mr Blampied and Mr Cotterill were just two of eight local company representatives from across the Mansfield Shire to make presentations to MPs Paul Weller, Damian Drum and Geoff Howard.
Each company representative outlined how they used electronic communications within their business, the importance of ecommerce and what the future held for them.
They also offered views on where the future lay and what they could do better if stronger and more efficient communi- cations were available.
“With more than 800 employees from across the world coming to work at BSL every winter it’s essential that we continue to embrace and improve the way we use e-communication and e-business.
“There are challenges to overcome but with support, we can ensure that all businesses across Mt Buller and surrounding areas are able to operate competitively in the modern market.”
Also outlined were the ben- efits of working remotely, either from home or an office, with some saying they were ‘tree changers’ living remotely for a better life style.
At present BSL uses e-commerce for online sales such as B-Tags, marketing, staff recruitment, video conferencing, including Skype interviews, training and inductions, and as a means of communicating to employees with their rostering and payment advice.
Mr Blampied said the compa- ny expected B-Tag sales online to rise to around 30 per cent within the next year or two.
“The B-Tag is a good example of what we can do by embracing the benefits of technology,” he said.
“It has revolutionised the entire way we transact with the guest and vastly improved the service we provide.
“Skiers and boarders move faster through the lift gates; they can use it as a debit card around the mountain and simply reload it online whenever necessary.”
“There are also benefits in the added security it provides for our customers.
“If you lose your BTag and you are a First Tracks member, we can simply replace it.
“We have also seen that on the occasion a parent loses a child, once staff are notified we simply search the child’s location on the mountain via B-Tag purchases or lift access, and then reunite the family very quickly.”
Black spots in mobile and internet reception were highlighted during the one day inquiry meeting held at Mansfield Shire Council chambers at which the three politicians highlighted the importance of the government knowing what is needed and perhaps what can be done in the future to improve services.
The inquiry will be on-going until the end of this year with a report expected to be tabled in Parliament during the first sitting of 2014 in February.
SNOW IS FALLING: Just in time for the week of the Subaru Victorian Interschools competitions, more than 30cm of fresh snow has fallen across Mt Buller and Mt Stirling resorts bringing the depth to man made areas of more than 80cm and natural snow to 57cm. Among those enjoying the fresh powder was Hugo Cole who was all smiles as he prepared to set off on his Alpine GS on Monday morning, competing in division five of the Boys events. More photos page 14 and full report next issue.
PHOTO: Andrew Railton