Why work for ABTA?

ABTA is the UK’s largest travel association, representing travel agents and tour operators that sell holidays and other travel arrangements worth £38 billion each year. 

For more than 65 years, ABTA has been responsible for supporting and representing membership, regulating Members’ behaviour through our Code of Conduct, setting industry standards and assisting consumers with travel questions or complaints against Members.

The ABTA Code of Conduct governs areas such as accurate advertising, fair terms of trading, changes to booking and managing customer complaints. The Code of Conduct requires all ABTA Members to provide customers with information on insurance, visas, passports, health requirements and alterations to travel arrangements.

The company has a team of around 90 people headed by Chief Executive Mark Tanzer, who has been with the company since 2005.

Mark is committed to fostering a human approach. He makes clear his trust and confidence in staff at all levels to deliver the outputs needed for business success. Mark is very much in favour of empowering staff at all levels. To this end, responsibility is pushed down to managers and shared with team members. 

Due to the nature of ABTA and the diverse areas we cover, there are many staff who are considered to be industry experts in their areas resulting in a fairly flat structure with responsibility spread out across the organisation. A non-hierarchical management style is encouraged throughout ABTA. All staff members including the CEO and the SLT work in an open plan office amongst their colleagues. 

The office is based in London, near London Bridge.

Our company benefits

ABTA has a competitive package of benefits for its staff that provides comprehensive health care, a pension scheme for retirement planning, life assurance and income protection. On joining ABTA, you will receive the following benefits: 

  1. 23 days’ annual holiday entitlement;
  2. Better Bankside Buzz card, which offers discounts at many local businesses;
  3. Touchdown holidays offer concessionary travel benefits available to airline and other travel industry staff members; and 
  4. Reimbursement for the cost of eye tests and glasses prescribed specifically for display screen work. 

    After three months’ service with ABTA you will receive the following benefits: 
     
  5. Company pension scheme;
  6. Buying and selling of annual leave;
  7. ABTA life assurance plan;  
  8. ABTA income protection plan;
  9. Private medical scheme;
  10. Cash plan benefit;
  11. Interest free season ticket loan;
  12. Cycle to work scheme;
  13. Employee assistance programme;
  14. On-line GP service; and  
  15. Flexi-time*. 

    After six months’ service with ABTA you will receive the following benefit: 

  16. Flexible working*. 

    After five years’ service with ABTA you will receive the following benefit: 
     
  17. 25 days’ annual holiday entitlement.

*Subject to manager approval

Staff recognition

Our CEO leads a staff briefing every six weeks, which includes awards for staff members, and we hold yearly staff awards when staff members nominate their colleagues who have demonstrated the ABTA values. The nominations are then passed onto the SLT who choose the winner for each category.

We recognise and congratulate length of service with awards given to staff members on their 10th, 20th and 30th anniversaries.

Performance measures

All staff members have formal inductions with HR, Facilities and IT on their first day, have a one-to-one with their line manager and then a formal review after their first three months with ABTA, at the end of their probation. 

There is also a quarterly check-in between staff members and their line managers. This is a short, structured conversation, looking back over the previous quarter to discuss the staff member’s successes and challenges and looking forward to the quarter ahead, to plan what each staff member will work on and how to approach it.

In addition, each staff member’s objectives are set at the beginning of the year and there is an objective log that tracks and records their progress throughout the year. This information is captured within the one-to-ones with their line managers to support their development. We actively encourage constructive feedback and recognition among teams and the wider business.

Best in class training

We aim to be ‘best in class’ to recruit and retain the best talent from both within and outside the industry, leading by example and encouraging both personal and professional development through internal and external training. 

We believe structured training and development at all levels within ABTA is essential to the efficient and effective running of the organisation and to the personal development of our staff.

We also run an internal training programme called ABTA Uni. The aim of ABTA Uni is to ensure that all staff have a thorough understanding of the entire business as well as new developments.  

Each person at ABTA is integral to ABTA’s success and the delivery of our vision and mission. Understanding what each team does will help us all with cross-team working and internal development as well as enabling us to sustain high levels of professionalism.

Our employment practices

We are an equal opportunities employer and have clear policies on the company’s anti-discrimination, bullying and harassment standpoint. We have a clearly defined grievance policy, which follows best practice guidelines. Our dedicated HR Department, in addition to line management, is available to respond to manage any staff issues or concerns.  

All of our employment policies and practices are detailed in our staff handbook, which is issued when you start working for ABTA and is permanently available on the company intranet. We update our policies in line with legislative changes and all staff members are asked to sign confirmation of receipt of changes. 

Recruitment process

We have a minimum two-stage interview process, which can sometimes include a phone interview as an extra process, then a face-to-face interview with the recruiting manager and HR and in some circumstances, a final face-to-face interview with a Director. We use a series of competency tests together with scenario-based questions throughout the selection process.