Hotel / Catering

Industry hiring shows upward trend

by Nicolette Wong

CTHR Pay Trends Survey 2011

Bright outlook for hotel and catering recruitment

In spite of global economic woes, hiring in the hotel and catering industry remained on an upward curve last year, with salaries increasing accordingly, as reflected by Career Times' CTHR Pay Trends Survey Report (December 2011). With strong turnover in the sector, many companies used year-end bonuses as an important strategy to retain talent, and forecasted pay adjustments and increased hiring intentions for 2012.

The poll of hotel and catering industry respondents yielded a number of insightful findings:

Salaries are on the rise

  • Ninety-six per cent of the survey respondents in the hotel and catering industry said their companies had offered pay increases in 2011. Sixty-four per cent of these respondents remarked that salaries were up by four to six per cent.
  • Seventy-eight per cent of the respondents noted that recruitment had increased in their sector in 2011.

Turnover remains high

  • Since hiring sentiments were strong in the industry last year, many hotel and catering employers experienced ongoing high turnover rates. Fifty-seven per cent of the respondents reported turnover rates of 11 per cent or higher.

Bonuses widespread

  • The overwhelming majority (91 per cent) of those surveyed in the industry planned 2011 year-end or discretional bonuses for their employees. They predicted bonuses to range between the equivalent of a month's salary up to three times that.
  • Ninety per cent of the respondents cited overall company performance and individual performances as key factors when considering staff bonuses and pay increases.

Hiring intentions boosted

  • As the industry continues to develop rapidly, with increasing competition to lure service staff from other sectors, hotel and catering businesses are gearing up to hire more people as they expand. Seventy-four per cent of the respondents said they intended to hire in 2012, with 59 per cent planning to grow their workforces by between one and five per cent.
  • Companies envisaged steadier and more regular terms of employment, with 65 per cent of those surveyed noting that they would prefer to recruit permanent and full-time staff in 2012.

Bright horizon

  • With 96 per cent of the respondents forecasting pay adjustments of four to six per cent for employees in 2012, attractive remuneration is expected to become a key issue in the hotel and catering industry this year.

Considering that recruitment prospects in the sector are positive for this year, employers are advised to offer competitive salary packages and benefits and to adopt appropriate hiring and retention strategies.

March and April are expected to be an early peak-hiring period. University students typically like to start searching for jobs around this time. "Along with fields such as accounting, sales and health services, the hotel and catering sector is expected to expand their graduate workforces this year," points out Edmond So, general manager, Besteam Personnel Consultancy.

About CTHR Pay Trends Survey

More than 430 customers responded to the CTHR Pay Trends Survey, which examined salary and hiring trends across 14 industries, in November and December 2011. Visit to download the full report and to find out more about recruitment tendencies in other industries.

Taken from Career Times 3 February 2012, B5

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