The British Hospitality Association (BHA) and leading hospitality employers announced substantial job creation when they met in London’s City Hall for the Big Hospitality Conversation yesterday, that included ‘on-the-spot’ jobs available to young job seekers.
The announcement forms part of a wider job creation programme in the hospitality industry, with 300,000 jobs needing to be filled by 2020 to reflect rapid expansion and market demand.
Of these, 60,000 will be earmarked for 16-24 year olds to provide ‘a gateway’ to help tackle long-term youth unemployment.
Ufi Ibrahim, chief executive of the BHA said: “Hospitality is a successful industry with even greater growth prospects offering a vast range of job opportunities for all job seekers of any age.
“However, there are still widespread misconceptions among many outside the industry who don’t see the value in hospitality careers.
“We urge young people to look beyond outdated viewpoints and join our industry. The breadth of job roles and the training available means that bright and focused young people can succeed very quickly.
“At the City Hall event businesses were offering on the spot job opportunities, so a young job seeker could start the day unemployed and leave with a job. Where, in any other private sector industry, would that happen?”
It is estimated that across the UK there are some 900,000 young people not in education, employment or training, and there is concern the situation is not improving fast enough despite the economy returning to pre-recession levels.
But while many young people are still out of work, there are thousands of job vacancies in the industry and it’s this disconnect between jobs on offer and what young people will consider as career options which is causing particular concern for industry experts.
A recent study for the think tank IPPR concluded that one of the main barriers to reducing youth unemployment was a mismatch between the types of jobs young people are training for compared with the jobs available.
In a bid to combat outdated views towards the industry, renowned restaurateur and celebrity chef Brian Turner joined more than 100 hospitality industry chiefs and 400 young job seekers at London’s City Hall to promote hospitality as a career option.
The Big Hospitality Conversation offers a commitment to creating job opportunities for 16-24 year olds. 34,000 jobs have so far been created at events like the one in City Hall.
The aim is for the hospitality industry to create up to 60,000 jobs for young people by 2016. It’s a joint initiative between the British Hospitality Association, Springboard, Believe in Young People, Business in the Community, People First, and the DWP.
Among the hospitality businesses offering jobs pledges at the event were: Baxterstorey; Harrison Catering Services; Eds Easy Diner; Wagamama; Sodexo; McDonald’s; MyHotels Group; Fera at Claridges; Turner Restaurants; Greggs; The Crown Estate; Café Spice Namaste; D&D London; Army and Navy Club; KFC; Le Gavroche; Galvin Restaurants; Bartlett Mitchell; Westminster Kingsway College; Elite Hotels; Greene King; Cote Restaurants; Sofra Restaurants; Best Western; Roast; Cinamon Club; Mews of Mayfair; Marriott; Costa; Paul; Caprice Holdings; Premier Inn; Zizzi; OCS; Brigade Bar and Bistro; Café Rouge; Vacherin; Blue Apple Catering; Melia White House; Royal Academy of Culinary Arts; Moorfield Group; Yo Sushi; The Cinamon Club; Nando’s; Delaware North; Café Rouge.