Association’s measures to resolve staff crisis in tourism

 In Catering and Hospitality, News

The Portuguese hotel, catering and allied business association AHRESP have come up with measures which it says could help ease the chronic lack of staff in the country’s tourism sector.

The move comes after Portugal’s Secretary of State for Tourism, Commerce and Services, Rita Marques, estimates that the sector needs 45,000-50,000 workers in the tourism sector.
“The association’s members should, first “seek to employ creative strategies to attract and retain professionals that should go beyond higher wages, and should involve evaluation methods, recognition practices, career progression, and a better balance between work and family life”, states AHRESP.
AHRESP suggests wages should be pegged to gains in productivity, both at individual and collective (team) levels; the creation of a favourable environment for companies by reducing taxes, specifically those directly related to employment.
AHRESP calls for a better and more suitable time management which would increase productivity and would increase the availability of these companies to provide better working conditions.
Creating professional categories, initiatives and mechanisms would add value to the profession, adapting them to the current reality and the “demands of our (sector’s) activity”.
As for training, AHRESP states that a serious and structured training for employees working in tourism, fostering a system of dual education which complements learning with practical experience” should also be adopted.
Also in the training field, AHRESP proposes the “development and implementation of a short term programme for professional categories which are most in need of qualified staff, thereby enabling prospective employees access to the profession.
AHRESP also believes that immigration should be part of the solution, but in an organised way so as to ensure good working conditions and an adequate wage, as well as recognising qualifications (that may have originated in third party countries).
Last, the association suggests a HORECA Employment Market Green Book. (HORECA is an acronym that refers to a foodservice industry sector that sells food and/or beverages. The word HORECA itself combines the first two letters of the words: Hotel, Restaurant, Café, or Hotel, Restaurants, and Catering)
The ‘book’ should clearly identify the current market failings in terms of human resources and qualifications.