Why TUI called on the Digital Masters Academy to complete its digital team

Paulien Goditiabois in

Travel organization TUI has developed an impressive digital marketing department in recent years. To realize those digital ambitions, the tour operator called on NedWorks’ Digital Masters Academy. "A perfect match," says Eddy Eykholt. "NedWorks found suitable candidates for vacancies that we ourselves struggled to find a match for."

Why TUI called on the Digital Masters Academy to complete its digital team

Ambitious Digital Pioneer

A few years ago, TUI Belgium decided to no longer outsource its digital marketing to external agencies. "To build up our expertise internally, we brought in experts in the field of SEO, social, paid advertising, CRM, automation, and UX," says Wim Naessens, team leader Usability and Conversion at TUI.

As a result, in only a few years, the popular tour operator transformed itself into a digital pioneer in Belgium. "In the field of advertising and user-generated content, external agencies can learn from us instead of vice versa," says Eddy Eykholt, Digital Channels manager.


The TUI Group is active in, among others, Germany, the Netherlands, the UK and the Scandinavian countries. The decision to no longer outsource digital marketing also led to a close collaboration with colleagues from neighbouring countries: "Dutch consumers have made the online switch sooner than us, and Sweden and the UK also have many years of in-house expertise."


Interesting environment for digital talents

Attracting the right digital experts to realize their ambitious digital ambitions did not always go smoothly: "Digital marketers often choose to work for a digital agency. TUI is best known among pilots, flight attendants, travel agents, and administrative staff."

Digital marketers are often surprised when they discover how much in-house marketing expertise TUI has, Eddy explains. "We offer an extraordinarily exciting environment which allows you to learn on a daily basis, even though we have not yet built up that image."


"For starting digital talents we are nevertheless an interesting choice. New employees are given many opportunities to grow horizontally into other specializations. Do you discover an affinity with a specific aspect of digital marketing? Then we give you the chance to grow. And with new colleagues ending up in a team of specialists, they can learn a lot."


Digital Masters Academy

During a visit to Google in early 2018, Eddy discovered the Digital Masters Academy. "Google referred us to NedWorks to find the right digital profiles. That turned out to be a perfect match. We've already hired three new colleagues through them."

"What I really appreciate about the collaboration with NedWorks is that they really think together with us. They do everything they can to look for profiles that fit into our team. At the start of our collaboration, NedWorks sent us a wide selection of profiles.


In the meantime, they know exactly what we need, so they can make a more targeted selection. If no candidate matches our requirements, they simply say so. This way, nobody wastes their time."

NedWorks is a perfect match for us. They look specifically for the type of profile we need and always introduce suitable candidates.

Eddy Eykholt Manager Digital Channels at Tui

Targeted selection of junior digital profiles

TUI hired 3 junior digital profiles via NedWorks in the course of one year. One of them is UX & CRO specialist Sander Huisman who started working at TUI 8 months ago. "After attending the Digital Masters Academy, I informed NedWorks that I wanted to focus on UX. At the time, I found few vacancies that suited me. NedWorks went looking for me and suggested a position at TUI."

Wim: "The UX team consists of 6 employees with a broad profile. We expect them to be creative and empathetic while having all the necessary analytical and technical skills. Of course, not everyone will excel in all aspects. That is why everyone gets the opportunity to discover their true strengths and to specialize further."


Among other things, Sander studied the performance of the website: "There is a lot to be gained there. Despite not having an extensive technical background, I did focus on this. Because I notice that the faster our website is, the better the user experience and the higher the conversion. Google recently confirmed this at a conference I was allowed to attend."


A successful interaction

The DMA graduates fit well in the digital marketing teams of TUI, says Eddy. "We are looking for junior profiles, straight from the school desks or with a first work experience, who want to grow with us. Recently graduated DMA graduates have been given a good foundation, even on a technical level. That is becoming increasingly important within digital marketing."

At TUI, new employees are given the opportunity to learn every day. "There is a TUI budget to learn new things. If you want to follow a course, you can certainly do so," says Sander. "Moreover, we keep each other informed of new expertise that we have acquired. Someone from the team regularly gives a presentation about a domain that they have been studying up on." The new team members also provide a fresh breeze, says Eddy. "We, old pros, are sometimes stuck in certain thinking patterns. People from outside are not afraid to challenge this at times. And young people are more in touch with our young customers."


Sander is also very pleased with the successful interaction: "I was happy to end up in an environment with so many specialists collaborating. The TUI marketing teams all work on the same floor. You won't find any isolated islands here. If I want to test whether something is feasible or is being measured, I simply approach the relevant team and immediately get an answer to my question. This allows us to advance quickly."

About the author

Paulien is Industry Business & Marketing Manager at NedWorks. Her goal is to inspire like-minded digital professionals and support people and organizations to achieve their true potential. 


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