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Hospitality jobs alert initiative launched

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Bermudians interested in employment in the hospitality industry are invited to complete an online registration allowing them to be alerted about job openings, specific training, and learning and development opportunities if they need to refresh or learn new skills.

The initiative, a joint campaign by Government's Department of Workforce Development, Bermuda Hotel Association, Bermuda College and Bermuda Tourism Authority, aims to attract more Bermudians to the hospitality industry to fill a projected growing supply of jobs over the next two years.

The effort comes in response to a new study indicating Bermuda's need for hospitality workers will increase as several new hotels open on the island within the next two years; these include the St Regis Bermuda Resort in St George's, and Azura Bermuda and Bermudiana Beach Resort, both in Warwick.

“We are pleased to be a key stakeholder in this initiative to ensure we have Bermudian talent ready to meet the rising demand in the hospitality industry,” said Lovitta Foggo, the labour minister, who encouraged related jobseekers to complete the survey, accessible via the Bermuda Job Board homepage.

She added: “We are committed to providing training and development opportunities for emerging hospitality careers that will be required in the very near future. It is important we identify persons who have a desire to learn, work, and advance in the hospitality sector. There is a wealth of opportunity, and we are excited about the prospects for Bermudians.”

The Bermuda Hospitality Needs Assessment Study, carried out by PwC Bermuda for the BTA, found that by 2021 the gap between Bermuda's future talent supply and demand for hospitality workers may range between 555 and 814 positions, driven largely by 335 new hotel rooms due to come available. The range is based on differing scenarios in 2021, depending on whether new properties open by target dates.

Kevin Dallas, CEO of the BTA, said: “The ongoing revival of Bermuda's tourism industry brings both challenges and opportunities — specifically, in the demand and supply of Bermudian hospitality workers for projected job growth. As employment opportunities increase, it's important that Bermudians be aware, prepared and empowered to successfully obtain positions in the industry.”

The estimated future demand of hospitality workers ranges from 3,039 to 3,298, depending on best- and worst-case scenarios — an increase of seven to 16 per cent compared to current demand, the study found. Roles with the largest gap in supply and demand of hospitality workers are housekeeping and food & beverage, representing 63 per cent of the overall gap.

“The Bermuda Hotel Association is very pleased to welcome Bermudians to register for a number of employment opportunities that will be available in the near future to those genuinely interested in pursuing careers in the hospitality and hotel industries,” said Stephen Todd, CEO of the BHA.

He added: “It is vitally important to the future growth, sustainability and prosperity of our destination that we encourage Bermudians to join us in this endeavour, as we seek to attract increased repeat business and leisure visitors to Bermuda.”

A key factor affecting availability of workers is age, according to the study. Based on the sampled population, a quarter of hospitality workers in Bermuda are over the age of 60, and the island's rapidly ageing population would continue to put downward pressure on the supply of workers for the industry.

“Bermuda College is looking to increase its enrolment in hospitality-related courses, such as culinary arts, hospitality management, bartending and our certified restaurant service programme, as well as increase outreach to local high schools to attract more students to hospitality offerings,” said Duranda Greene, Bermuda College president.

She added: “Public high-school students are currently enrolled in our hospitality department programmes as part of the Department of Education's dual-enrolment programme. We expect more students will take advantage of this opportunity to gain valuable job skills and earn college credit while still in high school. We will also consider expanding that programme to include the certified restaurant server programme offered through our Professional and Career Education division.”

Gaps in the supply and demand of hospitality workers will grow as the industry continues its revival, the study noted — but training and development of the local workforce may decrease the gap faced by hotel operators. Increasing how individuals are recruited and subsequently retained will help the industry and the workforce.

PwC used workforce data for the study from a sample of hotel properties in Bermuda, as well as publicly available demographic and economic information.

Demand was estimated by identifying key drivers, in particular new developments scheduled to open by 2021.

Key executives from 14 existing properties and new developments participated in the study and provided workforce data.

To complete the employment registration, go to https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/HBHBQTQ.

• For more information, contact the DWD at 297-7714 or 297-7716

Lovitta Foggo. the labour minister (File photograph)
Kevin Dallas, CEO of the BTA (File photograph)

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Published September 17, 2019 at 12:37 pm (Updated September 17, 2019 at 12:37 pm)

Hospitality jobs alert initiative launched

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