Employers commit to changing industry perceptions

Employers commit to changing industry perceptions

Leading hospitality and tourism operators have launched a new employer commitment in a bid to change some negative perceptions of the sector and commit to providing good quality training, work-life balance and support to all staff.

With recruiting and retaining people an ongoing challenge, it is hoped the Our Hospitality and Tourism Commitment can help dispel misconceptions, such as low pay, long unsociable hours, limited opportunities to develop and not offering long-term careers.

Speaking about the voluntary code of conduct, launched by the the Hospitality and Tourism Skills network (HATS) and supported by Invest NI,  Ciaran O’Neill, chair of HATS said: “Many hospitality and tourism businesses are making fundamental changes to offer a different and better quality job experience.

“However, attempts to change the wider perception of the industry and to show that it is changing for the better can only be done if industry works together and commits to being an ‘employer of choice’, providing good quality training, work-life balance and support to their people.”

‘Critical commitment’

Judith Owens, member of the HATS executive and CEO of Titanic Belfast added: “Our Hospitality and Tourism Commitment is critical if we want to retain people in the industry. Work life balance, development and wellbeing support are basic needs that all people require today. These have to be part of the day-to-day ways of working if we want to ensure we retain talent today and for tomorrow.”

David Roberts, Director of Strategic Development Tourism NI, welcomed the initiative, saying: “I commend the launch of a voluntary code of conduct for the tourism and hospitality industry which will boost the message that the sector is a positive career choice.  Attracting and building a skilled and sustainable workforce is key to ensuring that tourism can recover and return to the levels of success achieved in the years up to 2019.”

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