For the very first time, the hospitality industry has joined forces to provide essential support to those impacted by COVID-19. Marking a first in the industry’s history, CareerScope is a partnership between five organisations: Springboard, Hospitality Action, UK Hospitality, the Institute of Hospitality and the Savoy Educational Trust.
Launching today, Monday 28th September, the free service will support those within hospitality, leisure and tourism who’ve either lost their jobs or are struggling to find work. Its objectives are to support those who have lost their job due to COVID-19 back into work, as well as those struggling to find work. Its aim is to bring the hospitality community together, providing advice and resources on developing skills, financial and wellbeing support; ultimately helping people get back into work and developing their careers.
Some of the biggest names in hospitality have backed the initiative, including Michel Roux Jr, Clare Smyth, Raymond Blanc, Alastair Storey, Wendy Bartlett and Danny Pecorelli. They say CareerScope a vital initiative for protecting the future of their workforce.
Michel Roux Jr, chef patron of Le Gavroche, commented: “Each year thousands of young people come to work in our industry, but COVID-19 has forced many businesses to lay off staff to survive. Post-COVID and post Brexit, I really fear for the future generation of young chefs, waiters, restaurateurs and hoteliers.
“As an industry we had to do something about it. In a time of crisis, it’s never been more important to look after our people, ensure they are happy, healthy and ready for work. We must be ready to welcome back those who have long and established careers in the industry, as well as ensuring the next generation of workers are coming through. This is a great initiative and shows that, even when the industry is going through its toughest period, we really care about our people.”
The UK is proudly renowned as one of the food capitals of the world. Currently 187 restaurants hold one or more Michelin stars, UK produce is recognised across the globe and we nurture some of the worlds’ best talent. COVID-19 has hit the industry hard.
Clare Smyth, chef patron of Core by Clare Smyth, said: “We were facing a staffing crisis before COVID-19. We need to take drastic action to ensure there is the next generation of chefs coming through when the industry recovers, when opportunities for chefs to grow and develop will be stronger than ever. CareerScope is a great initiative to help those who’ve lost their jobs get back on their feet and give them the skills and support to relaunch their career.”
CareerScope provides a one-stop industry hub with easy to access content on everything from CV writing and career webinars to redundancy advice, financial support and health and wellbeing resources. A digital training academy will also keep those out of work up to date on essential training, from customer service and food safety, to confidence and assertiveness webinars.
David Morgan-Hewitt, Managing Director at The Goring Hotel, said: “One of the greatest challenges which faces the leaders of our hospitality industry is keeping people both young and old interested and engaged when things are so difficult. So many hospitality professionals of all ages have been made redundant in the past few months, through no fault of their own, and sadly many more will probably follow in their footsteps during the next few months. This initiative helps us to reach out to these amazing people and keep them excited about our wonderful profession. Be under no illusion we need them and their skills – when things start to come back, as I believe they will with some speed at some point, it is to these people that we will look to build back our broken businesses and take this incredible industry to even greater heights.”
In recent months, the hospitality industry has benefited from government initiatives including Eat Out to Help Out and the furlough scheme.
Raymond Blanc, commented: “Government support has been a lifeline for many businesses, but when it runs out we are likely to see a huge number of job losses, which will have a massive impact on the future of our workforce. This is a brilliant industry that looks after its people. When our people need us most, we step up, look after our people’s wellbeing, and support them back into work. That’s why CareerScope is such an important initiative.”
Providing a vital service to retain those who have lost their jobs due to COVID-19, CareerScope will keep people engaged, motivated, healthy and well-trained, ready to work when the industry recovers.