Jobs boom for hospitality – but where are the staff?

Hospitality business owners are said to be at breaking point as they struggle to fill staff vacancies to cater to the huge influx in customer demand as restrictions ease.

Job postings in May and June rose by an average of 73 per cent for jobs in bars, restaurants and hotels. But at the same time, applications fell by 0.3 per cent.

What’s more, a recent report by the online training provider, High Speed Training,  found that one in three people felt that roles in hospitality offered little progression, according to new data from the job board, CV Library..

Many didn’t consider them ‘careers for life’ with many having further negative perceptions around low salaries and workplace stress. Added to that, staff are often ordered to self isolate because of Covid scares.

Jo Myers, co-owner of the Swine That Dines restaurant in Leeds, which is currently operating with a limited, reduced-risk menu said: “We plan to return to our full menu after August 16 and we will need to take on at least one chef and front of house person, but staffing will be an issue – everyone is struggling to recruit at the moment.

“There’s a common perception that you can only work in the industry if you have a passion for food. In reality, it’s a job you should simply enjoy doing and be paid a decent wage for. As with any role, there should be progression and rewards, but you certainly haven’t ‘failed’ because you don’t work in a Michelin star, fine-dining restaurant.

It’s absolutely necessary that you shout about your culture, your passion for your job, and your team’s great work

“Good cooking at every level and diversity of different types of restaurants should be celebrated. A busy restaurant with a team that enjoys working there, and happy diners who return time-after-time, is what success and job satisfaction should look like. This is what should be taught in colleges and schools.”

Sarah Taylor a specialist in hospitality operations at High Speed Training said: “The ‘stop-gap’ mentality and dismissal of ‘real skills’ from the public overlooks the fact that hospitality can be an amazing industry to work in.

“Some people see the hospitality industry as an art form, expressing their creativity through food, drink, and vibrant venues – without this industry some of the many amazing experiences we look forward to everyday would simply not be possible.

“It’s absolutely necessary that you shout about your culture, your passion for your job, and your team’s great work. Make it clear that whoever joins you will be joining a like-minded community of people who have a passion for the industry.

“It may take openly stating some of the stereotypes around your job advertisement, such as low pay and unreasonable hours, and showing applicants that this simply isn’t true for your business.”

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