A new free-to-use HospitalityUnite jobs portal has been launched this week to help workers from across the hospitality and tourism sector who may find themselves displaced as a result of the COVID-19 connect with businesses in other sectors who are desperately in need of extra staff.
The recruitment portal, which is supported by and UK Hospitality and the Scottish Tourism Alliance, is designed to help hospitality and tourism people find at least temporary employment in other sectors such as food retail and supply, health care and delivery that now need high volumes of staff to get through the crisis.
Harri, the hospitality workforce platform, has created the HospitalityUnite jobs hub free-of-charge.
“While hospitality has received vital support from the Government, the sector is collectively
also playing its part in trying to mitigate the hardship that so many of our people have
suffered at this time and will suffer in the weeks and months to come – and at the same time help those parts of the economy that now need extra labour to keep the country running,” said Kate Nicholls, Chief Executive of UK Hospitality.
As well as helping those already made redundant or had contracts terminated, the new website, which will be a free service, will also allow sector companies such as those in the food drink retail and care sector with under-employed staff due to current trading to second them to work in other sectors during the crisis. Video-screening will be provided as part of the service to speed up the recruitment process.
“HospitalityUnite already has a commitment from the likes of Hermes, Amazon, Planet Organic, Just Eat, Co-op, Waitrose, Care UK, Morrisons, Balhousie Care Group and logistics companies who need additional staff and who see skilled hospitality workers as ideal recruits. Right now we have 4,000 vacancies at Amazon and 2,500 vacancies with Waitrose ready to go onto the website,” said Pete Willis, Director at Harri, the hospitality workforce platform, which has created the HospitalityUnite hub free-of-charge.
The portal will not be visible to the public, but can only be accessed by the tourism, hospitality community through a link provided by participating companies. The likes of Amazon are looking out for the skills and experience that HospitalityUnite applicants can provide.
“During the current emergency, any hospitality operator will be able to sign up for free resources and courses. These will be available for all hospitality employees on the topics of mental health & well being, in conjunction with Upskill People & the MIND charity. In the future, those companies hiring through HospitalityUnite site are happy to redeploy these people back to their previous role when market conditions improve,” added Willis.
“It will be up to individuals and their companies how they want to use this resource, but it is designed to be another option for them in these challenging times – and we are grateful for the support provided by the STA and UK Hospitality in getting it off the ground,” added industry veteran Peter Martin, who has been working alongside Harri on the initiative.
The initiative, which is part of an international effort by Harri, providing similar services in all its global markets, including the USA, already has the support of a number of UK hospitality companies. Joad Hall, People Chief at Blacklock, said: “It’s amazing that these opportunities for temporary work can be delivered to our team. We have guaranteed our teams their jobs back because we desperately didn’t want to lose them but to be able to help them access temporary work is a godsend.”