Hospitality industry “should hire older workers”

The hospitality industry should consider hiring older employees to reduce the turnover in staff that it sees each year, it has been claimed.
Around 365,000 people leave their jobs in hospitality and catering each year, which is the equivalent of 20 per cent of all people working in the sector and is thought to cost the industry £2.7 million.
The sector employs an unusually high number of young workers with 34 per cent being under the age of 25, compared to 12 per cent in the overall economy, leading People 1st to suggest that it could combat the problem by focus on hiring older candidates.
Martin-Christian Kent, executive director at the workforce development charity, said that the industry’s tradition of hiring young employees might not be supportable in the long-run.
He said: “Attracting and retaining older workers could prove to be a sustainable option, thanks to the changes in the retirement age. Some hospitality businesses are actively doing this as part of their policy to recruit a more balanced, diverse workforce.”
He added that employers could also try harder to retain their existing staff by developing more opportunities for career progression, which will also help to create more suitable candidates for management roles.
The highest proportion of under 25s working in the industry are employed in waiting positions (66 per cent) and bar roles (60 per cent), while many of these employees are also full-time students – 41 per cent and 25 per cent, respectively – due in part to the roles’ flexible hours.
In terms of other positions within the hospitality and catering industry, 19 per cent of people working in Chefs jobs are aged under 25, with the number falling to 14 per cent for Pub Owners or Managers, nine per cent for Restaurant and Catering Managers and four per cent for those working in Hotel Managers jobs.
By Owen Mckeon
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