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Poll results reveal 83% feel finding staff is the biggest headwind for hospitality

Vincent Wood

Last week, we were delighted to welcome a number of industry figures to our London office for our annual Hotels Update. The evening began with a technical update, looking at the key areas of accounting, tax and GDPR, followed by a panel discussion where we received insight from three key members of the hotels industry: Daniel Sangiuseppe, Director of Castlewood Hotels, Dev Anand, managing director of The Hotel Property Centre; and Charlie Parker, General Manager of Four Seasons Hotel London at Ten Trinity Square.

The panel provided first-hand knowledge and insight on hot sector topics including:
  • Brexit – has it been good for the industry?
  • the challenges in attracting and retaining staff;
  • technology in hotels – an opportunity or threat.
Audience voting polls provided interesting views on the above topics, most notably that 63% of people feel that Brexit, so far, has been beneficial for hospitality. The panel agreed that the increase in European tourists visiting the UK has seen a rise in hotels stays, however, they do feel this is simply a short term gain.
One poll response that did not come as much of a surprise was that 83% felt that finding staff at the right price is the biggest headwind for the hospitality industry. Panellists and audience members agreed that this has long been an issue for the hotels sector as hoteliers struggle to find staff with the passion for hospitality. With technology now able to facilitate a huge portion of the hotel customer journey, from online travel agencies providing a simple customer booking platform (75% of the audience felt that OTA’s are good for business) to robots manning reception desks, hoteliers believe this issue will continue to worsen if they do not look to other sectors to recruit staff.

For more information on the topics discussed, or to speak to a member of our Hotels & Leisure sector team, please contact Vincent Wood.