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FACTS, FIGURES and FUTURE-PROOFING: the hospitality industry now and looking ahead.

October 2010

FACTS & FIGURES & FUTURE-PROOFING: the hospitality industry now and looking ahead: Opening Address by Steve Hanrahan, CEO of HSI, at the HSI & ITP NZ Research Forum October 11, 2010.

We Kiwis have a lot to be proud of in our hospitality industry.

As a nation of some of the greatest travellers on earth, we come back home and demand the level of service we received in countries where service is a long-term profession, and staff rely on tips as the bulk of their wages.

It’s all credit to our hospitality industry that we generally meet those high expectations – and often exceed them.

The hospitality industry has blossomed across New Zealand – it’s quite extraordinary to remember that not long ago, coffee in many places was a dull, drip-filtered affair, and service could often be described the same.

Now, you can travel anywhere in the country and find great coffee and crafted teas, fantastic, innovative food, and excellent service. 

And our economic influence shouldn’t be overlooked – the hospitality industry produces $3.8 billion a year - 2 per cent of our GDP.

It employs 126,000 people – that’s nearly 7 % of all people working in New Zealand – in 20,000 businesses.

It’s a sector that’s a rite of passage for many Kiwis, and no doubt a large proportion of the people you know – business leaders, teachers, doctors, academics – have done their time, and learned valuable skills, working in our sector.

Skills learnt in hospitality - working with people, teamwork, sales and problem solving - are the foundation skills for any successful career.
And for many people, hospitality becomes much more than just a job – it’s a career and it’s a business.

It’s fair to say, 2010 has been a challenging year for the hospitality industry – like many others sectors, the global recession has hit us hard as many clients tighten their belts and stay home.

With the Rugby World Cup  due to storm our shores next year, we need to be ready to greet all the visitors and show them true professional Kiwi hospitality. The sector is working to do that.

The promotion of the industry as a profession, particularly in schools, remains a key part of HSI’s work. So too does the development of innovative and relevant products to support the uptake of training in the workplace.   

HSI currently oversees training to over 10,000 chefs, waiters, baristas, bartenders, maitre d’s, porters, hotel receptionists, and managers every year.  Training ranges from short up-skill programmes to national qualifications.

Our Strategic Plan for the next three years also incorporates the Government’s key education priorities. These include a stronger focus on higher level learning for priority groups – young people, Māori, and Pasifika.

Improved achievement rates for learners are a goal for us all - government, employers, providers and industry training organisations.

Furthermore, like many other industry training bodies, many of our trainees have high literacy needs. Improving people’s literacy, numeracy, and language skills remains an ongoing focus for us and is a key way we are up skilling the workforce and adding value to the broader economy.

But if we are to prepare for the future, we need to take a step back and look at our industry. Where are we going, and what are our challenges?

Hope is not a strategy, we need to plan, to have the right people with the right skills.

This year, we commissioned research from Business and Economic Research Limited (BERL) on the hospitality sector. You’ll hear more about that shortly in Dr Nana’s presentation. A key point is that it predicts we’re going to need 24,400 new people entering the hospitality business over the next four years.

The largest area of employment growth will be in bar attendants, baristas, waiters, managers and chefs. In terms of training, we believe we can meet the demand. And we know it’s important that we do, to ensure Kiwi hospitality remains second-to-none.

This afternoon is all about planning ahead to meet the demands of our industry; having as many of the facts and figures as we can to assist us now and in the future in having a profitable industry which offers real career prospects.

Profiling the sector, looking at succession planning, workforce development and management training, through what the real return is from staff training is all on the menu; I hope you find it an appetising one.

Programme and Presenters:

  • Profiling the Hospitality Industry: Dr Ganesh Nana,  Chief Economist  from BERL. Ganesh is a quite rare breed of economist – as he himself has said, he knows that behind the numbers and the models are stories about people and their communities, their incomes, their jobs and their opportunities. His work extends beyond the numbers, to the economic policy choices facing New Zealand and their impact on peoples’ lives. Having his input towards profiling the hospitality sector is a great step for us in making the most of New Zealand hospitality.
Click here to download presentation
  • Succession planning and workforce development:  Sara Refoy, from the Waikato Institute of Technology, WINTEC. Sara is Head of School of International Tourism, Hospitality and Events, and  a member of the New Zealand Chefs Association and the Restaurant Association.
Click here to download presentation
  • Amenity Creep: the increase of guest products and services being offered, a trend that we are seeing as hotels compete for business. Clare Jay, from WELTEC, is studying this topic for her Master of Professional Studies in Hospitality and Tourism Management, and is going to tell us about her findings so far.

Click here to download presentation  

  • Computer Demonstration by Sue Bartlett,  NorthTec’s Hospitality and Tourism Coordinator, and Peter Sampson, instructional designer with Learning Works (an arm of Wintec) to on a new  management training product that is available now, step forward.  Bearing in mind that supervisors or managers can make or break a business, it certainly makes sense to make sure that those people have training to help them carry out their responsibilities.

Click here to read/learn more about Step Forward

  • The real dollar return from staff training, from Jeremy Neild,  Central Districts Consultant for Agriculture Services Ltd,  in Palmerston North.

Click here to download presentation

Closing remarks by Steve Hanrahan, CEO of HSI, at the HSI & ITP NZ Research Forum October 11, 2010.

So, today was primarily about planning ahead to meet the varied demands of our industry. Having as many of the facts and figures as we can to assist us now and in the future was our aim, with the objective of having as much information and ideas as possible that helps us have a profitable industry which offers real career prospects.

Profiling the hospitality sector, looking at succession planning, workforce development and management training, the intriguing subject of amenity creep through what the real return is from staff training was all on the menu ; I hope you found it appetising and that it had some real value to you. Thanks again to our presenters and thank you all for attending, and participating.


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