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Career trends and in-demand jobs in the hotel industry for 2022

career trendsAfter a challenging few years for hospitality staff, this year is going to offer some exciting opportunities for hotel professionals.  

The labour market in 2022 has finally shifted in your favour, bringing higher wages and lots of new opportunities. Plus, emerging trends and new technologies are shaping some exciting career paths that didn’t exist five years ago.

We’re going to take a look at the hotel jobs in highest demand and some of the big hotel trends for 2022 and what they mean for your career.

Firstly, however, everyone is talking about the global shortage of hospitality workers right now, but what does that shortage actually mean for hotel job seekers?

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Global hotel staff shortages in 2022: better conditions, more training opportunities and lots of jobs

Major brands around the world, including Hilton, Marriott and Best Western, are all reporting huge staffing shortages. Meanwhile in Australia, according to the National Skills Commission’s Recruitment Insights Report, an enormous 63% of hospitality businesses have said they are having difficulty recruiting staff.

This is good news for hotel and hospitality staff in terms of wages, conditions, and opportunities for employment and on the job training.

Hotels are realising the true value of their skilled employees, and many of them are going above and beyond to provide incentives for staff to come back to work. While some hotel chains report offering perks like free holidays, other businesses are raising wages and offering fairer and more flexible working conditions.

Others are voicing a need for more transformative recruitment and employee training strategies, including more intensive on the job training and investment in employee skills.

In response to calls from desperate hospitality businesses, the New South Wales Government is now even offering free training for hospitality workers in courses, such as safe food handling and responsible service of alcohol.

It’s going to be a good year to learn some new skills and put yourself in an in-demand position in the hotel industry.

The most in-demand hotel jobs in 2022

Right now, hotels are reporting shortages of every type of staff, from housekeeping to front of house. Here are some of the roles experiencing the biggest shortages in hotels:

  • Hotel Managers are needed on every level, from senior general managers to mid-level managers of specific departments, such as the hotel restaurant, operations or front of house. A skilled position requiring a degree and training, hotel managers are especially hard to come by right now. If you upskill into this position, you’ll be assured a fast trajectory up the ladder.
  • Chefs and Cooks are in desperately short supply in hotels and restaurants right now, to the extent that these roles have now been put on the ANZSCO priority skills list for migration.
  • Front of House and Waitstaff are badly needed across the entire hospitality sector right now, with an estimated additional growth of 30,000 new openings a year on top of the existing shortage.
  • Housekeeping roles are in high demand, with an additional 33,000 new hotel rooms expected to be added to the accommodation supply in Australia by 2023.
  • Revenue Managers are expected to be increasingly hard to come by in the next few years, with hotels reporting a growing scarcity of highly-skilled young revenue managers. Our Master of International Hotel Management equips you with the fundamental knowledge of hotel finance and revenue.

Hotel career trends to watch in 2022

When looking at jobs and careers in the hotel industry, it’s essential to think longer term, as well as looking at what jobs are in demand right now.

Over the past five years, we’ve seen a whole range of new jobs, market trends and technologies emerging in the hotel industry. Shaped by the coronavirus pandemic, environmental issues and changing consumer demands, these longer term trends will determine the hotel careers of the future. Understanding them is essential when deciding what skills you should be learning now.

Continuing digital acceleration

During the pandemic, consumer uptake of digital technologies, such as social media and delivery apps was greatly accelerated. Hotels similarly adopted new digital technologies in response to the pandemic, from contactless check-in systems to branded apps. However, while take-up of AI, machine learning, content-driven marketing and the Internet of Things (IoT) may be on the rise in hotels, recent research suggests that as much as one in three hospitality workers have no digital literacy. 

There is a big digital skills gap in hotels and the tourism and hospitality industry. Skilled staff are needed across a range of different digital roles, and demand for these skill sets is only going to grow in future. Consider upskilling for digital roles much needed by hotel brands, such as:

  • Digital marketing and content creation
  • Cybersecurity
  • E-commerce sales
  • Data analyst
  • Social media management
  • Mobile app development
  • Digital guest experience management

Combine a course in hotel management with training in digital marketing or ICT and you’ll be able to take your pick of roles in the digital hotel economy.

Sustainability and green jobs

Nine in 10 employees now believe companies should focus on positively impacting the planet as much as they focus on profit. Consumers are also concerned about the environment. In a recent survey of 72,000 Hilton guests, around 33 percent said they prefer hotels with environmental and social programs. You can read more about why sustainability should be a top priority here.

This has seen a growing number of hotels shifting towards more sustainable practises. The current global transition towards a low impact hospitality industry, and the growth in the number of green hotels means more sustainable jobs for hotel employees. A growing demand for green skills in hotels such as auditing, compliance oversight and change management also mean more opportunities for specialisation in this growing field.

If you have a passion for the environment and travel, there are a growing number of career options in the field of sustainable hotels and eco-tourism. 

Wellness and health in the hotel sector

Since the pandemic consumers are spending more money than ever on health and wellness, resulting in the growth of this already huge US$1.7 trillion dollar market. With an expected growth rate of 44% in 2022, wellness is the fastest growing segment of the tourism sector.

With this explosion of consumer interest, hotel brands are now expanding into the wellness space and acquiring reputable spa, wellness and fitness brands. Hyatt, for example, recently acquired Two Roads, Miraval and Exhale, and IHG acquired Six Senses.

For hotel professionals, this trend opens up a whole new set of potential career options that combine expertise in the wellness area with skills relevant to the hotel industry. If you’re passionate about wellness and health, and you like the idea of a career in beautiful locations and settings, wellness might be the right pathway for your hotel career.

With a course in hotel or hospitality management combined with yoga, massage or fitness training, you could operate your own wellness centre within a hotel brand.

Now is the time for hotel staff to upskill into a highly trained, in-demand position that can never be replaced by a deep-fryer bot.

About the author

Gareth MayoGareth Mayo is BMIHMS Success Coach, Hospitality at Torrens University.

Tags: career trends

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