Hospitality job vacancies fall to 149,000

18 January 2023 by
Hospitality job vacancies fall to 149,000

The number of job vacancies in the hospitality sector fell to 149,000 between October and December last year, a 5.7% drop on the previous quarter.

This marked a decrease on the July to September period, when there were 158,000 unfilled roles across the industry, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

However, the number of hospitality vacancies remained well above the 85,000 reported in the last pre-pandemic period.

Between October and December 2022 the number of empty jobs across all areas of the economy remained at a historically high level, despite six consecutive quarterly falls.

The ONS said this was due to economic pressures causing some employers to hold back on recruitment.

At the same time wages continued to rise, with total pay increasing 6.4%.

UKHospitality Chief Executive Kate Nicholls said: "[These] figures reinforce the challenging recruitment landscape hospitality businesses are facing, with vacancy rates still 63% higher than pre-pandemic levels.

"Wages in the sector have been steadily rising for a long time, reflecting the efforts of businesses to both attract staff and keep up with inflation. Our latest quarterly survey showed staff pay was up 12%, joining energy, food and drink as the most significantly rising business costs.

"There is not a silver bullet to solve this recruitment crisis but we do need to see ambition from Government, ranging from investment in skills, apprenticeships and education to immigration solutions where necessary.

"If the sector is able to access the people it needs to fill essential roles, businesses will be able to trade more freely and return to their potential to deliver economic growth and create even more job opportunities."

Restaurants have had to temporarily close and cut trading hours while others have introduced extra staff benefits such as health insurance to boost recruitment.

However, several operators told The Caterer they had seen rise in job applications in the new year.

Image: al clark / Shutterstock

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