Professional Comment

Extended Staff Crisis Could Worsen Supply Chain In Hospitality

By Kunal Sawhney, CEO of Kalkine (

The hospitality sector in the United Kingdom has been already reeling under the doldrums of staff shortages, at a time when the enterprises were allowed to resume their operations on full scale. Hospitality is one of the worst hit industries as all the businesses were obligated to shut their entire operations at the beginning of the first lockdown and it came in last, when it came to allowing the businesses to reopen due to higher level of consumer interaction.

The internal problems with the hospitality enterprises have now shifted from arranging the working capital facilities to ascertaining the required number of staff to run the busi- ness.The problem started with the pings sent by the National Health Service’s mobile application, directing the individuals in proximity of infected to self-isolate.

During the last few months, hundreds of thousands have been advised for a mandatory quarantine, effectively creating an acute shortage of staff for the corporations to manage various operations that necessarily require human intervention.

The pressure on businesses has been rising week-after- week as they are utilising enough money to run their full- scale operations, but are unable to realise worthwhile

revenues even when there is a sharp rise in the customers waiting in line for various services including food and beverage and holidays.

Now, the pain of staff shortages has affected the supply chain systems as internal logistics divisions and outsourced partners are facing a dearth of drivers who can transport the goods on time.The hospitality industry largely depends on a plethora of people, managing respective tasks.The sharp increases in the people staying in mandatory quarantine has given rise to the market-wide inadequacy of individuals handling various operations.

The adequate number of people overseeing the supply chain systems for a corporation has been disturbed with the so-called ‘pingdemic’ as these processes require actual humans on the ground that remain accountable for time-sensitive tasks.

As a result of apparent scarcity of staff handling the supply chain operations, there has been a momentous rise in the shipping costs.To partly overcome the wearisome situation, companies are pushing their payrolled workers to fill in the requirements for drivers’ shortage.

The continuous difficulties in the supply chain space are pushing the businesses to struggle in replenishing the stock of essential items.With the holiday period round the corner, the enterprises have turned quite skeptical about the forthcoming opportunities whether they will be in a position to deliver the committed supplies during the peak time.

The optimal transportation of the fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) products is a serious matter as stores are running out of supplies due to delayed deliveries. Furthermore, all the major businesses operating within the hospitality industry need an error-free and timely supply chain in order to run a full-fledged enter- prise catering to thousands of customers at a time.

With the limitedness of staff to handle the duties, the outlets are apparently unable to service the desired customers due to the extended deficit of the products, as well as the people supervising the duties.The problems are likely to subside in the upcoming months, only if the healthcare authorities manage to contain the spread of Delta variant cases, productively downsizing the number of pings send by the NHS.