UK Hospitality Staff Crisis - KSB Recruitment

UK Hospitality Staff Crisis

Is there a solution to the UK hospitality staff crisis?

The UK’s hospitality industry is experiencing rising worker shortages, with job vacancies at their highest levels since records began.

Industry bodies say one in five workers have left the sector during the coronavirus pandemic, with Covid and Brexit often cited as exacerbating the problem. For staff that have returned to their roles, the so-called “pingdemic” has led to further shortages due to workers being told to isolate by the NHS app.

However, new figures from the Office for National Statistics reveal that job vacancies in the industry were already consistently at high levels before the UK went into its first lockdown in March 2020.

There were 102,000 vacancies in the sector from April to June 2021 – that is a rise of 12.1% compared with the 91,000 figure for the same period in 2019.

Yet, since 2017, vacancies in the industry have been consistently at a staggering 90,000 or more.

So, although Covid and the effects of Brexit might be driving worker shortages in the short-term – are there other, longer-term issues affecting the industry?

Some in the sector say a major contributor to the staffing problem could be the hospitality industry itself – with its perceived culture of very long working-hours and low wages putting applicants off, and driving people away.

For Matt Shiells-Jones, a hotel manager in Manchester, the main problem with the hospitality sector in the UK is its culture, pay and zero-hours contracts, which are “absolutely endemic in the industry”, he says.

When he first started working in the sector 25 years ago, you “were paid according to your skillset”, he says.

“Nowadays it just seems minimum wage has become the de facto wage that everyone pays. It has become an absolute standard.”

He says offers for salaried positions can be even more off-putting for workers, as they involve lots of unpaid overtime, with discussions often held with employees along the lines of, “it’s a 40-hour-a-week contract, we don’t expect you to do more than about 60 (hours) on average”.

“That has become so cultural and so embedded into hospitality. It’s crazy.”

The hotel manager says workers who left the industry during Covid have realised the “grass is a bit greener on the other side” after finding better paid jobs with fewer hours in other industries.

The pandemic and Brexit have acted as catalysts in condensing the recruitment crisis, he adds. So, instead of playing out over two or three years an exodus “has suddenly come to pass in two or three months”.

Kate Nicholls, chief executive of UK Hospitality, agrees that Covid has “definitely exacerbated” shortages. But she suggests that Brexit is not as important, and that the recent departure of EU workers seems in her opinion to have been primarily driven by Covid.

Some shortages – particularly of chefs, waiting staff and restaurant managers – are being seen because “we have reopened the [whole] economy at the same time and therefore everybody is looking for staff”, she adds.

“The labour market is incredibly tight, because of the government’s furlough policy….therefore you have got a battle for talent.”

Ms Nicholls explains there are several reasons why so many workers are not returning to their roles from furlough – including concerns over job security, longevity and pay.

“That has led to a lot of people wanting to remain on furlough and not willing to come back.”

On top of this, disruption to education and college courses has also halted the flow of future talent to fill vacancies, with many aspiring workers having to start courses again, she says.

“We are having to recruit more people than we thought. We have a vacancy rate of about 10%. We are short of around 200,000 staff.”

‘Working as a chef was unbearable’

Daniel Voet decided to change his career during the second coronavirus lockdown after eight years as a chef.

The 26-year-old, who lives in Bristol, says long working hours in understaffed kitchens fuelled his decision to leave. “I was doing 14-hour shifts. If I wanted a weekend off I had to work 10 days straight. It was getting really unbearable.”

Mr Voet echoes Mr Shiells-Jones’s experience of many hours of work going unpaid, especially for salaried staff. “You will be put on a 40-hour salary a week and you’ll end up doing 60-80 hours,” he says.

“Essentially you’re working for free for 20-30 hours a week. You wouldn’t do that anywhere else so I don’t know why it is acceptable in the hospitality industry.

“I always pushed to get an hourly pay for that reason. I don’t mind doing the work as long as I get paid for it.”

Fair hours and higher pay

Mr Voet, who now works in marketing, says the pandemic has led to a lot of furloughed chefs realising that a career in hospitality wasn’t for them.

To solve the shortages, Mr Voet says firms need to implement fairer working hours and pay higher wages.

Mr Shiells-Jones, whose hotel starts pay at £9 an hour and only offers guaranteed hours contracts, agrees wages should be better but says the approach needs to be “multi-faceted”.

He says he has never known a chef only working a 40-hour week and understands why there is a shortage when “you’re asking them to do 60-70 hours a week in a boiling hot, stressful environment”.

“I think the main thing is being able to say it’s a 40-hour week, at 41 hours I’m marching you out of the building because you shouldn’t be there.”

He adds changing the industry’s culture requires leaders to understand people want that work-life balance and “want to be able to go home and switch off”.

“I refer to this period as the time that hospitality has to reset itself, to restructure itself as an industry people want to work in,” he says.

Ms Nicholls also describes the situation as a “reset moment”, and says such a changes should look at working conditions, training and skills development.

She says it is about valuing vocational education and vocational careers. “That’s part of what has fuelled the chef shortage. It’s not a skill shortage in hospitality, we can train anybody – it’s a labour shortage.”

Ms Nicholls says emerging from the pandemic is also an opportunity to “get a better view of hospitality” and argues the industry already offers structured training, pay progression and flexible working hours.

In a bid to tackle the current staffing crisis, UK Hospitality has produced a 12-point plan featuring several short-term and long-term actions, which range from freezing the liquidation of employers’ apprenticeship levy funding, to calling on the government to urgently amend its Shortage Occupation List.

Ms Nicholls says she hopes the industry can return to pre-pandemic levels of demand by the start of 2022, but warns it is “undoubtedly going to take the industry a long time to recover”.

KSB are a catering and hospitality recruitment agency who look are different way to attract candidates. If you would like to have a chat with us please select the button below.


The original version of this article was first published in the BBC

The Next Generation of Hospitality Talent - KSB Recruitment

The Next Generation of Hospitality Talent

First look at the food on offer as another new restaurant opens its doors in the city centre

Drapers Bar, formerly Browns, has been converted into a restaurant where young people can get training and experience.

Metropolis, a new restaurant in the city that will give vital training to young people, opened in June.

The restaurant, in the building formerly known as Drapers Bar on Earl Street, promises feel-good food and an exciting, inclusive dining experience while giving training and experience to youngsters.

PET-Xi Restaurants have taken over the venue, which also went by the name Browns, and given it a 1920s Art Deco makeover and will operate as a training ground for young people who are not in employment, education or training (NEET).

Explaining the premise, Fleur Sexton, CEO of PET-Xi, said: “We work with young people are getting unemployed people into work.

“What we’re finding is that there’s a lot of vacancies in hospitality – a lot of people have left the industry during the pandemic.

“Part of that seems like issues for EU residents travelling and coming to work, obviously Brexit is going to have an impact too, so it’s really important that we train up the next generation of young people into hospitality.

“Get young people involved in the community so actually training people in a real life setting is really really important, actually doing it in a real live restaurant with a really experienced team is just the best.

“But it’s also important to get hospitality going for City of Culture 2021 – the Draper’s space was like a big empty space so we thought we could take that space and bring it alive again, making it into something really special that people would want to come to.”

Talking of those who will get training, Fleur added: “Those we train will have that real sense of pride in what they’re doing while they are being trained up, and we’ve got the links with Warwickshire College to make sure that they’ve got the opportunities.

“There’s a real skills escalator going on – they come in as trainees, they do work experience for a couple of weeks, and then they get onto a paid opportunity. Some of them will go on to the Kickstart programme, others will go on to apprenticeships.

“Some of them might just decide that they don’t want to do formal qualifications, but the main thing is we get them involved in their city, get them involved in paid employment, and really just change what’s been happening .

“Because of the pandemic they’ve been stuck inside – it’s really slowed down a lot of people’s career operations because they’ve not been able to take up places in college or they’re not been able to get jobs.

“So it’s just about turning things around and making it all positive you know it’s got to be a positive message for 2021.”

For many Coventrians, the building being taken over holds memories of being slightly unwelcoming, particularly when it was under the name Browns.

Practically everyone who’s ever been out for a drink in the city has a story about being inexplicably refused entry on a night out due to a seemingly arbitrary door policy.

But Fleur is eager to point out Metropolis will be an inclusive environment, one that is open and inviting to all.

“For us it’s all about inclusion and equality. The menu reflects that. The vision and the ethos the staff is all about inclusion and about making sure that everybody feels welcome – even down to things like gender neutral colours in the loos.

“Every single thing has been thought of, we’re an LGBT+ safe space and it is all about equality, because that’s what the city is about – making sure everybody’s welcome

“So it couldn’t be more different in terms of door policy people aren’t going to find they have issues in that way.”

The menus, which you can see more of here, will cater for all, with separate menus for vegetarians, vegans and meat eaters. However, with corresponding items on each menu you can order the same meal regardless of your preference.

If you are looking for perm or temp catering jobs or temp hospitality jobs click the Find me a Job button below.

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The original version of this article was first published in Coventry Live

UK Catering Staff Shortage Solution - KSB Recruitment

UK Catering Staff Shortage Solution

Rugby catering students take up jobs across the area – including at the much-loved Granny’s Sandwich Shop

The students are filling the ranks for the county’s catering industry, which has suffered greatly through the pandemic.

Catering students from Rugby are answering the staff shortages in the hospitality industry by taking up positions across the county during their studies – including at Bilton’s much-loved Granny’s Sandwich Shop.

Fifteen students on Professional Cookery courses at Rugby College, which is part of WCG, have taken up part-time positions in the sector as it reopens following the pandemic.

They have taken up roles across the hospitality and catering industry, ranging from restaurants and pubs, to butchers and fish and chip shops – in towns and cities including Coventry, Rugby and Leamington Spa.

Almost half of the students across the Level 1 and Level 2 courses have been able to achieve employment, with many using qualifications gained already as part of their studies to appeal to employers.

Prior knowledge of health and safety has been highly sought after by employers as they have less time and staff to dedicate to training.

Some of the students have also been helped to get jobs with the front of house qualification gained during their Level 1 course.

One such student is Emma Woodward, who has started working at Granny’s Sandwich Shop in Bilton.

She said: “The practical lessons at the college kitchen have allowed me to practice my baking which is something I am passionate about.

“It has helped me with the job at Granny’s Sandwich Shop.

“I want to be a pastry chef so I am really happy to get the job.

“The front of house qualifications have built my confidence in talking to and serving customers.”

Level 1 student Harry Holton is working at Holiday Inn in Rugby. He said: “Choosing the course at Rugby College helped me to understand I wanted a job in the catering industry and has helped me to get my foot in the door.

“I have picked up many skills from the college that I use daily in the kitchen at Holiday Inn, for example knife skills and health and safety.”

Tutor Ian Sands said: “Employers are looking for a good underpinning knowledge of catering in first- time employees and it’s brilliant to see so many of our students securing jobs.

“We encourage our students to go out and gain experience, and now is a great time to do that with employers looking for staff to help with their day-to-day operations following the pandemic.

“Many people have moved out of the hospitality industry, which is seeing employers delve deeper into the talent pool. The fact that these students have already developed skills with us at college has stood them in good stead.”

Student Aaron Noreiga has also secured a job, taking a front-of-house position with the Newbold Comyn Arms in Leamington Spa.

For more information on Food, Drink and Catering courses and apprenticeships at Rugby College visit

Find out more about our catering and hospitality recruitment by clicking the Hiring button below. If you are looking for a nre job click the jobs button below


The original version of this article was first published in the Rugby Advertiser

Top Ten Edinburgh Restaurants - ksb recruitment

Top Ten Edinburgh Restaurants

TripAdvisor’s top ten Edinburgh restaurants revealed across the capital

Where should you visit next in Edinburgh? TripAdvisor may just have so top tips on where to dine out. With restrictions eased enough to enjoy a hearty meal in the capital, where should you head for the best cuisine Edinburgh has to offer? TripAdvisor has all the answers, as we have collated a list of the top ten best restaurants in the capital, as chosen by their consumers.

#10 – The Piper’s Rest Public House – Royal Mile

Rated at #10 out of 1,755 restaurants in the city, The Piper’s Rest is a traditional British public house with a more Scottish twist.

In the description, the owners have stated that ‘ A’body’s welcome at Piper’s, from the lone wanderer, happy couples, families or groups on a night out.’

Reviews have sung the restaurants praises, with the waiters/waitresses service as good as the ‘traditional Scottish foods’., with one reviewer saying ‘ First time trying a deep fried Mars bar and it did not disappoint.’

#9 – Pataka – Causewayside

This stunning Indian restaurant is situated just down from the University of Edinburgh, and sits at number 9 on the scale of best restaurants in the capital.

Key points of Pataka would be the superb staff that work within the premises, and the amazing selection of different food on offer, with options for gluten free, vegan and those who require halal food.

Other elements of this restaurant include Asian and Bangladeshi cuisine, making it an extremely diverse restaurant.

#8 – Dine – Cambridge Street

Located just down from popular attractions like Camera Obscura and the National Museum of Scotland, this contemporary restaurant is perfect for business lunches, pre-theatre dining and special occasions.

Started by award winning Michelin starred chef Stuart Muir (former executive chef of Harvey Nichols and The Old Course Hotel. St Andrews), Dine has created a series of menus full of contemporary twists on classic dishes, always with a focus on local, sustainable and, above all, quality ingredients.

One reviewer described their experience as ‘excellent, brilliant atmosphere and the food was spectacular.’

So, if you want a step up in dining, Dine is the place to be!

#7 – The Table – Dundas Street

Half a mile from Princes Street, this interactive form of dining is perfect for groups of people who enjoy trying new cuisine.

Specialising in European dining especially, The Table is a small but exclusive way to explore many different dishes in the one night, with their multi-course tasting menu.

Reviewers have said that the chefs are imaginative, the hospitality is excellent and the food is absolutely outstanding.

If you are looking for a totally new experience, then The Table is for you.

#6 – Salt Cafe – Morningside Road

At the Salt Cafe, they are all about seasonal ingredients, thoughtfully sourced from exceptional local artisanal producers and suppliers, to create the best possible brunch experience for their customers.

Exceptionally affordable, this cafe does brunch to its best ability, as their slogan stands ‘ if a thing is worth doing, it’s worth doing well.’

Reviews sit at 5 stars across the board, with customers stating ‘These guys know what they’re doing and they’re doing it brilliantly.’

Vegan, Gluten-free and dog friendly, this cafe is welcoming to everyone.

#5 – Boteco Do Brasil – Lothian Street

Winner of 2018 &2019 Best Late Night Bar in Scotland, the Boteco Do Brasil is a lively pub and restaurant with a nightclub-like atmosphere.

‘Boteco’ in its native language means the friendly neighbourhood bar with lively music and atmosphere, and that is exactly what the owners at Boteco Do Brasil have replicated in the capital of Scotland.

Reviewed highly, the customers have described it as ‘very polished and staff were friendly and chatty, definitely felt like an authentic Brazilian experience.’

If a vibrant nightlife is what you’re missing, then this exciting pub and restaurant is right up your alley!

#4 – New Chapter – Eyre Place New Town

New Chapter, situated in the heart of Edinburgh’s New Town, offers a modern menu which mixes European influences with Scottish produce.

The owners have described it as a ‘family-run restaurant and a hidden gem, much loved by locals and visitors alike because of our warm, friendly service and delicious food.’

Rated at 5 stars across the sections of food, service and value, customers have said ‘Delighted this is my neighbourhood restaurant!’

If you are ever travelling through the area, then New Chapter is one you cannot miss out on.

#3 – One20 Wine Cafe – Dundas Street

A unique addition to the streets of Edinburgh, this family-run wine cafe is #3 on our top 10 list of the best restaurants in Edinburgh.

With a passion for wine and exquisite food alike, this restaurant is an elegant and relaxing meeting place for businesses, friends and family alike, with everyone welcome inside the doors of One20.

Reviews set it apart from other contenders, stating ‘ just a classy place with great ambience, really nice and efficient staff and lovely food. It is popular and rightly so.’

So, if you are looking for a step up in elegance and class, then One20 is the place to be.

#2 – Makars Gourmet Mash Bar – North Bank Street

The Makars Gourmet Mash Bar has been described as an Edinburgh “legend” , “culinary hero” & “local gem”, and the reviews stand behind each of these points.

Winner of UK TripAdvisor restaurant 2018,19 & 20, the Makars Mash Bar is one of Edinburgh’s last independent family business and aims to work with local suppliers whenever possible.

Reviews have set this independent restaurant from others, stating ‘Jesus, Mary, Joseph and the Wee Donkey! You have to go, the food gets better every time we visit. Excellent service, always very friendly. Couldn’t ask for more. We will see you at Hogmanay!’

#1 – Skyline Restaurant – Tynecastle Park

And finally, the one you’ve all been waiting for…the number one restaurant to visit in Edinburgh is the on-location restaurant at the home of Edinburgh football team, Heart of Midlothian Football Club.

The Skyline Restaurant is located on the top floor at Tynecastle Park, and offers stunning views of the Edinburgh skyline – and a range of delicious, fixed price two and three-course meals.

One cheeky reviewer stated that ‘Hopefully, one day Hearts will be as good on the pitch as their hospitality is off it, Bravo Skyline. My compliments to the Chefs, John and all the staff.’

You can check out all of the restaurants listed above, and hundreds more on the TripAdvisor website.

As a Hospitality Recruitment Company, KSB are always looking for great establishments to work with. If you need any support with your recruitment, please click the Hiring button below.
The original version of this article was first published in Edinburgh Live
Catering & Hospitality Apprenticeships- KSB Recruitment

Hospitality and Catering Apprenticeships

Apprenticeships are a cost-effective way to recruit and train young people to meet the needs of your business

A Somerset college says its hospitality apprentices are ready to help local firms take advantage of a surge in demand this summer.

The South West has always been a favourite tourist destination and hospitality has historically been one of its biggest employment sectors.

Recent global events may have reshaped the industry but many pubs, restaurants and nightclubs are reportedly seeking staff ready for the lifting of restrictions.

Strode College ‘s director of Employer Engagement David Byford said: “We believe there’s going to be a huge surge in demand as we come out of lockdown and apprenticeships are a great alternative to other training methods which can be more time-consuming and costly.”

That’s why the college is putting its weight behind the Hospitality, Travel & Customer Service category at the Bristol Live & Bath Live Apprenticeship Awards 2021.

High-quality training

Strode College is one of the highest performing colleges in the UK and the only Ofsted outstanding further education college in Mendip and Somerset.

Its hospitality services apprenticeship offers the chance to train as a chef or to get involved in food and drink production, housekeeping, front-of-house reception, or supervision and leadership.

Hospitality is an incredibly wide-ranging industry that relies on high standards of professionalism.

David explained: “We work with many local establishments – from tea rooms to award-winning fish restaurants, gastro pubs to fine dining hotels.

“We also provide high-quality training to artisan and organic food processing venues and craft bakers throughout the South and South West of England.

“We know that hospitality is all about customer service – whether this is making sure food is served on time or that a hotel room is ready to use.”

Exceptional service skills

Strode College is passionate about working with employers in the hospitality sector to provide outstanding training that’s individually tailored to their business needs.

David said: “Apprenticeships are a cost-effective way to recruit and train young people to meet the needs of your business. This is particularly true for small businesses which find the cost of staff overheads difficult to bear.

“Apprenticeships allow them to fill skills gaps and build a skilled workforce, by delivering training designed around business needs and building knowledge and skills for the future.”

Government incentives

So whether you’re hoping to become an apprentice, or want to know more about how an apprentice could support you and your business, Strode College can help.

There’s certainly never been a better time to employ an apprentice, with new government incentives available of up to £4,000.

David concluded: “We know that apprenticeships deliver real returns by improving productivity, making businesses more competitive and improving staff retention.

“Apprentices also tend to be eager, motivated, flexible and loyal to the company that invests in them.

“So all our apprentices receive in-depth guidance that is totally related to their job roles, meaning they can deliver exceptional service skills wherever they choose to work.”

This article was originally published on Somerset Live

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Catering JobsorHire Catering Staff

Avoiding Catering Food Waste

Every kitchen can be a waste-free zone

The hospitality industry often gets a bad rep when it comes to its sustainability credentials – particularly regarding food waste. Perhaps this isn’t surprising when you consider that, according to Wrap, one in six restaurant meals are wasted in the UK and 75% of restaurant food waste is avoidable. Approximately 18% of food purchased by restaurants ends up as waste, costing each site an average of £10,000.

Such shocking statistics should – and, in many cases, do – prompt hospitality businesses to do more to reduce their waste. But on a broader level there is arguably a collective responsibility that isn’t yet being addressed to the extent that it should.

Organisations such as the Sustainable Restaurant Association (SRA), with which Arla Pro partners, are doing incredible things to promote a more sustainable industry. What’s more, it feels like now is the right time to build more sustainable practices into our business agendas. As the industry looks to recover from its toughest ever period, sustainability should be a ‘red thread’ through this process of rebuilding. This means sourcing ingredients sustainably, reducing waste and truly serving the needs of our communities. It’s what diners want and it’s what we all need.

From an Arla Pro perspective, we know that reducing our waste takes dedication all the way from cow to consumer – and everything in between. From optimising production in our dairies through intelligent technology, to collaborations with food banks, our goal is to lead by example when it comes to fighting the war on food waste. For example, for several years Arla has worked with the European Food Banks Federation (FEBA) which brings together 326 food banks in 23 countries. In 2018 we provided more than 1,200 tonnes of dairy products to those in need via FEBA – enough to make 2,800,000 meals. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

Through our partnership with the SRA we’ve now launched War on Waste, a new practical guide to provide hospitality businesses and their kitchen staff with all the support they need to feed their customers and not their bins, thereby saving them money and significantly reducing their carbon footprint in the process.

With an easy-to-follow five-step recipe for success, mixed with expert food waste hacks from a trio of top chefs, the War on Waste guide is designed to help turn any commercial kitchen into a food waste-free zone. With food waste accounting for almost a tenth of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions, chefs can use the guide to take a big bite out of their impact on the planet.

Among the many useful tips and tricks, the War on Waste guide also draws on Arla Pro’s dairy expertise and provides an essential selection of hints on how to avoid wasting dairy products, such as a guide to the suitability of freezing different types of cheese.

As a big fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) player, it’s perhaps no surprise that Arla Pro has such a robust sustainability agenda. And we acknowledge that there’s more still that we can do (we’re working towards carbon net zero by 2050, for example). We’re now calling on more FMCG businesses who supply hospitality to do the same – because if sustainability is not at the heart of all our agendas, then we’ll never create a truly sustainable industry that’s fit for the future.

In the meantime, we hope that our work with the SRA will go some way to supporting kitchens across the country to do their bit. Because only through our collective efforts can we successfully fight the War on Waste.

This article was originally published on The Caterer  

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Hospitality Recruitment Drive KSB Recruitment

Hospitality Recruitment Drive

Jobcentres are ordered to launch a hospitality recruitment drive to tackle 188,000-worker shortage in the hospitality sector

  • Coaches from Jobcentre Plus will be running sessions on the hospitality sector
  • It comes after UK Hospitality found there were around 188,000 vacancies
  • UK Hospitality and the Department for Work & Pensions have now teamed up
  • The sessions are expected to encourage those in need of work into the sector 

Jobcentres have launched a hospitality recruitment drive to try to tackle the 188,000-worker shortage in the hospitality sector.

Work coaches from Jobcentre Plus will be running sessions on working in hospitality in every region of England, as well as across Scotland and Wales.

UK Hospitality (UKH) and the Department for Work & Pensions (DWP) teamed up to face the rising crisis.

It comes after the UKH analysis found a vacancy rate in the hospitality industry of nine per cent – equal to around 188,000 jobs.

It found 80 per cent of the businesses surveyed had vacancies for front of house positions, meaning waiting and bar staff, while 85 per cent were looking for chefs.

Minister for Employment, Mims Davies MP, said: ‘It’s been a challenging time for the hospitality sector but our roadmap is giving employers the confidence to hire, and our brilliant Work Coaches are helping them recruit local talent.’

She added: ‘At the same time, our Plan for Jobs is levelling up opportunity across the UK, supporting workers of all ages to retrain, build new skills, and get back into work as we push to build back better.’

Wetherspoon founder Tim Martin called for a ‘reasonably liberal immigration system’ to help fill jobs yesterday.

Mr Martin wants the Prime Minister to set up a visa scheme to allow workers from EU countries to easily come back and work in the UK.

He has clarified the JD Wetherspoon group is not currently suffering from staff shortages.

Meanwhile, the boss of Best Western, Rob Paterson, revealed some of its hotels have not been able to open to full capacity because there aren’t enough cleaners.

Workers either returned to the EU during lockdown or have been happily ‘sitting on furlough’ and earning 80 per cent of their pay while enjoying the sunshine, according to a Chamber of Commerce chief.

Suzanne Caldwell, managing director of the Chamber of Commerce in Cumbria, said other workers ‘are just not here’ after returning to families in the EU when their job security plummeted because of frequent lockdowns.

Kate Nicholls, CEO of UKH, said: ‘We’re delighted to be working with the government to restore confidence in a sector which is a stable employer for millions of skilled and unskilled workers across a wide range of diverse roles, and which can play a constructive role in tackling unemployment.’


The original version of this article was first published in The Daily Mail Online

Catering & Hospitality Team - KSB Recruitment

5 Ways Your Recruitment Process Is Harming Your Business

We are in a time when Catering and Hospitality businesses are set to have their busiest summer yet. Therefore, your recruitment process needs to be streamlined to ensure you have the right team to build your success.

There is an art to recruit the right people into your business. Get it wrong and it will not only cost you money and time but it could damage your reputation. Your recruitment process, meaning the way you attract candidates, run interviews and onboard, is all part of the candidate experience.

A bad candidate experience can lead to negative reviews. In fact, a recent report outlined a huge 72% of job seekers said they would tell others about their bad experience in person and online. 64% wouldn’t want to use your service if the candidate experience was negative. On top of this, 63% said they would reject a job offer because of a bad candidate experience. This means you are potentially losing out on great candidates for your Catering/Hospitality business.

Here at KSB Recruitment, we know what a streamlined recruitment process should look like and how it creates a great candidate experience. This article outlines 5 common mistakes within Catering and Hospitality that:

  • Cause a bad candidate experience
  • Damage your reputation

1 Unclear Job Descriptions

The clearer your job description is, the more candidates you will attract of the right quality. If your description is too vague or over detailed, it may attract the wrong candidates. I don’t just mean those that don’t have the skills. A candidate may come for an interview, realise the job isn’t for them when you explain an aspect that wasn’t on the job description. For example salary.

It could also put off great candidates from applying altogether. If we use salary as an example, 61% of candidates say they won’t apply for a job without a salary.

In the long run, this is costing you time looking through unwanted CVs and interviewing people who are not a good fit.

Top Tips

  • Location, salary and job title should be very clear
  • Don’t have a long list of duties, 5-6 will suffice
  • List the benefits of working for your business
  • Keep it to around 300 words

2 Your Process Is Too Long

We are in an instantaneous society now, this isn’t just online. It creates impatience, waiting too long for anything isn’t accepted and this includes searching for a job.

I have found that sometimes businesses hold out for the ‘perfect candidate’ instead of seeing the potential in an ideal candidate. Let me explain what I mean. I recently worked with a hospitality business who were looking for a Head Chef. One of the candidates I put forward was of keen interest to them. They were impressed with him at interview but felt he lacked a bit of experience. However, they could see he’d be able to pick this up quickly and was a great fit for the business. He was ideal, but not perfect.

Despite this, they wanted to see more candidates first before making a decision. After a few more weeks, they decided they would like to offer the job to the original candidate but he had accepted a role with another business. They lost out on a great candidate.

By holding out in case you find the perfect candidate, you are putting more pressure on your current team to deliver and in the long term, this will impact service levels.

If you would like an audit of your recruitment process, contact us today to see if we can help you improve.

3 Lack of Communication

woman holding various corded phones to her head

One of the biggest issues candidates have when searching for a job is the lack of communication. If they apply for a job and don’t hear anything back within at least 5 days they may assume they have been unsuccessful and could accept another offer.

This applies to interviews, always give candidates feedback regardless of if they have been successful or not. It shows you have acknowledged their time and if they haven’t been successful, your feedback could help them with their next interview.

The important point here is to be consistent with your communication and manage their expectations. If you are inundated with CVs, state on the job advert when they will hear from you or if they are successful, advise candidates when they can expect to hear from you after an interview.

4 Not Preparing Your Candidate

This mirrors managing expectations, it’s important your candidate knows what to expect when they come for an interview. Who will they be seeing and what will they be doing? Will it include a practical element or is it just an informal chat initially, with a second interview if they are successful?

If you are not clear about what they should expect, it could put them off wanting to work for you. Imagine if you arranged the interview and they expected it to be just you and they turn up and have to interview with you and two of your key staff, then you ask them to do a practical. They haven’t had the time to prepare and it will give the impression you operate like this at work. Would you want to work in a place where it wasn’t clear what you would be doing?

5 Not Involving Your Team

Catering Team Meeting - KSB Recruitment

Whoever you’re looking to hire into your Catering and Hospitality team, you need to know if they will be a good fit. You can’t do that without having input from those they will be working with.

For instance, if you need a Chef De Partie for your restaurant. Think about who they will be liaising with regularly. Ensure they meet them during the recruitment process and get their feedback. This will help you know you are making the right decision.

What Next?

We specialise in providing excellent Catering and Hospitality staff to organisations and have been supporting businesses for over 30 years.

As the hospitality sectors get busier with the easing of restrictions, we understand that having the best team in place is going to be essential to the success of your business.

If you need great candidates with the skills and personality fit, get in contact with us today on 0121 314 9365 to find out how we can help.



About KSB Recruitment

We are expert recruiters in the catering and hospitality industry with over 30 years in business, placing the best candidates in their perfect roles with an obsessive attention to detail.

KSB is proud to be a Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) member, accredited Investors in People, and both Data Protection and Home Office Compliance registered.

We specialise in roles in Birmingham, Staffordshire, the West Midlands, Warwickshire, Oxfordshire, Worcestershire and Northamptonshire.

KSB Recruitment Industry

Recruitment Industry: REC Campaigns and Policy news

The REC has commissioned a ground-breaking study looking at the economic and social impact of the recruitment industry. The Recruitment for recovery report and its findings should make us all proud. The report reveals that:

  • Someone finds a new permanent job through a recruiter every 21 seconds.
  • The work of professional recruitment firms supports £86 billion in gross value added across the economy, the equivalent of 4.3% of GDP, larger than either the accounting or legal industries.
  • Four in five (78%) people who found a job through a recruiter said it was a good match for them.
  • Each year, over 300,000 unemployed people use the recruitment industry to secure a permanent role, more than twice as many as those who go through the Job Centre.
  • Two in three businesses (63%) said that working with a recruitment agency had helped them increase the diversity of new recruits.

We hope the report makes you walk a bit taller and please share it widely. Use the findings to talk to your MP where possible to promote the good work that you do and let them know what you want from the government to help you do good work.

Light at the end of the tunnel
After a tense start to the year in every aspect, spring is around the corner and so is the sense of hope. For England, the PM recently announced a roadmap for easing lockdown restrictions with a full lift being planned for 21 June 2021. In Scotland, a significant reopening of the economy, including non-essential retail, hospitality, and other services is expected by the end of April, with more details to be revealed mid-March. In Wales, First Minister Mark Drakeford announced on Friday that stay-at-home restrictions could be eased in three weeks and we expect to hear more about Northern Ireland’s plan to lift restrictions on 1 March. Those all depend on strict conditions being met, the priority remains supressing the virus.

We welcome the announcements and the clarity it gives businesses to plan ahead. Business confidence in making hiring decisions has weakened throughout the pandemic and these announcements will help strengthen business confidence. To further business confidence the REC is calling on government to extend and enhance its Coronavirus Support package for business in the upcoming Spring budget on 3 March.

REC’s new JobsOutlook report is due on Friday with the latest insight on employers’ confidence and hiring intentions. Look out for that!

New UK/EU trading relationship following the end of the Transition Period
The Government has welcomed the European Commission’s draft data adequacy decision recognising UK’s data protection standards and setting out that the UK’s standards are ‘adequate’. This is a step closer for the EU to complete the technical approval process which, if done swiftly, will lead to a final data adequacy decision ahead of the 30 June deadline. We will be watching this space and you can find REC’s latest guidance here.

Following feedback from stakeholders, including the REC, the Home Office has published an updated version of its Right to Work leaflet which employers can use during the grace period (1 January to 30 June) to clarify requirements to EEA employees. The materials also include a RTW factsheet and information on the new Points-based immigration system with relevant Q&As as well as updated information on Frontier Workers.

New UK/EU trading relationship following the end of the Transition Period
To raise the concerns of our members on access to vaccines and testing, as well as issues around fair pay for agency workers, we have written to both the Cabinet Secretary for Health and Sport in Scotland and the Minister of Health for Northern Ireland. REC member H1 Healthcare has also launched a petition calling on the Scottish Government to include agency nurses and carers in its COVID-19 bonus scheme. The £500 one-off payment, announced in November 2020, is restricted to NHS and social care employees – we would urge all members to sign the petition.

Please remember that all frontline healthcare agency workers in England can book their COVID-19 vaccination appointment direct with the National Booking Service.

New UK/EU trading relationship following the end of the Transition Period
This week the REC submitted our official response to the government’s consultation on the reform of non-compete clauses. Our response set out the reasons why the reforms should not be implemented and the detriment that restrictions on non-compete clauses could have for the recruitment industry. REC members can help to influence the outcome of this consultation by contacting their local MP. We have a template letter which members can use to explain why the proposed reforms should not be implemented.