The visitor experience team at the Vancouver Aquarium has one clear task: deliver an amazing, fun and educational experience to our million plus visitors each year – you can say that we like a challenge. We have a talented team behind this goal, but the truth is there’s just no better way to find out what our visitors need and how we are doing than by listening to you.
In 2013, we received over 600 comment cards on site as well as online. You may have seen our comment card boxes in the galleries and wondered…does anyone even read these? Rest assured, not only do we read the comments but they are shared with our general manager and the appropriate teams so that we can take action based on the feedback received. We pride ourselves in responding to every single visitor who provides contact information.
In addition to comment cards, we conduct surveys to gather specific information about the overall experience. One of our core surveys is the Visitor Satisfaction Index, a seven-question survey that gives visitors the opportunity to assess different aspects of their visit, ranging from educational experience to staff courtesy and overall satisfaction, as well as to provide general feedback. Staff from each frontline department connect with visitors to complete this survey 365 days a year, for a total of 10,000 surveys each year.
The information we receive from our visitors is invaluable to our team in many different ways. When creating our new Clownfish Cove area for children, we provided the designer with all of the positive and constructive feedback we’d received regarding the children’s play area. Our staff and volunteers also spent time observing how the space was being used and asking visitors for specific feedback on the activities offered, as well as what they’d like to see in the new play area.
From there, the designer provided us with some ideas and one Super Saturday, we set up a station with drawings and plans of our new Clownfish Cove for review. This was a unique opportunity to talk with our members and listen to their feedback and we got some great ideas. By listening and involving our visitors in the process, we are confident our new Clownfish Cove will be better than ever.
Listening to our visitors ensures we deliver an amazing, fun and educational experience that meets or exceeds their expectations. Next time you visit us, feel free to share your comments with us in person, by comment card, or by contacting us directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.