Announcing upgrades to our Community Support
As the demand for travel returns, we've been significantly investing in our Community Support
We’ve more than doubled the number of Support Ambassadors since this time last year
Starting on September 30, 2021, we're rolling out Dedicated Superhost Support
I hope you are all doing well and getting ready for the travel season ahead, as your local guidelines allow it. I’m back this month with an important update about our Community Support team and policies.
Listening to your feedback
We know that Community Support is an essential part of your experience with Airbnb. You might remember one of my Host Updates last year when Tara Bunch, Airbnb’s Global Head of Operations, joined me to share more about the work she and her team do to help strengthen our Community Support team.
Tara discussed the challenges that our Community Support team faced in the wake of COVID-19. When the pandemic hit, we reduced Community Support staff numbers by 60% as travel came to a halt and the world went into lockdown.
However, demand returned much sooner than expected. This meant that for a period of time we were understaffed, and therefore having difficulty meeting your expectations. Since then, you’ve shared very important and candid feedback. We’ve been listening.Among your top concerns were the delays you’ve experienced when trying to resolve an issue. Even though our Support Ambassadors resolve thousands of questions from Hosts and guests each week, we know there have been many times when you’ve struggled to reach a Support Ambassador—and then didn't receive the follow through you needed or the empathy you deserved. We are closing this gap.
How we’re improving Community Support
I’m thrilled to announce that we’re rolling out a series of substantive improvements. To help us deliver on these new commitments, we’ve hired Brent Potts from Apple, where he spent eight years building and leading the customer support journey for billions of customers. At Airbnb, he’ll lead our Community Support team and focus on continuing to improve service for our entire community.
Here’s a more detailed look at the investments the team is making to better serve you:
- Hiring more Support Ambassadors: Since April of last year, we’ve been staffing up to meet the resurgence of demand. We’ve more than doubled the number of Support Ambassadors since this time last year. We’re now at our pre-pandemic staffing level, and we plan to increase our support team by another 50% to meet the peak travel season ahead. This increase in support will enable us to provide the quick and thorough help that you rightly expect. Most importantly, it will be easier to reach a Support Ambassador in real-time for 1:1 support.
- Greater empathy and a more tailored response: We are increasing our emphasis on empathy and individual circumstances across our Help Center communications and in our Support Ambassador training. We’ll do more to listen carefully and take into account the relevant nuances and context of your specific situation.
- Dedicated Superhost Support: We’re also thrilled to announce that we’re launching Dedicated Superhost Support in North America on September 30, 2021. This program will continue to roll out globally throughout the rest of 2021 and will offer exclusive access to our most tenured Support Ambassadors who are best suited to handle a situation quickly, expertly, and without handoffs between teams.
- Refreshed, simpler policies: We’ve heard your frustrations with some of our policies. This year, we’re conducting a review of our community policies and are consolidating them in an easier-to-understand format to help Hosts and guests have a clearer grasp of what is and is not allowed on our platform. The review is ongoing, and the full list of simplified, consolidated policies will be available in our Help Center starting this July.
- Personalized Smart Solutions: We’re also simplifying the Help Center so it will be much easier to navigate and more contextual to your needs. Starting in July, when you have a question, you’ll find concise and relevant Smart Solutions—easily digestible bits of information that will let you self-resolve your issue in a matter of minutes.
We’re hosting an event on Monday, May 24 at 9:00 AM PDT to share more about the most comprehensive update yet to Airbnb’s service. But before then, I wanted to personally communicate some of the details with you.
As travel returns—and it will—it is essential that we build on our shared trust and goodwill. You are what makes Airbnb possible, and your feedback is invaluable.
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