By sourcing professional hospitality staff from Kenya, GR8 Recruitment has potentially eased the strain caused by the industry’s staffing shortage, says Jersey Hospitality Association CEO Simon Soar.
‘Staff shortages are a big problem for our industry, and it’s a global problem for which there is no easy solution. For our industry to survive and thrive, we need to find innovative and pro-active ways to tackle our staffing crisis, so the JHA is delighted that a local recruitment agency has taken huge steps to do just that.
‘GR8 Recruitment has been to Kenya to source nearly 100 potential new hospitality staff who can work in the island within the non-EU hospitality work permit permissions. These are fully qualified professionals, from chefs to marketing professionals, that are now on GR8’s books.
‘They haven’t been hired yet, as has been widely reported, but they will be available to ease to strain on our industry thanks to the 150 short-term seasonal work permits granted by changes to Jersey’s immigration policy earlier in the year. I fully expect all of those 150 permits to be snapped up very quickly.
‘Jersey is a small island that depends on seasonal workers, and we’re facing a new migration policy that could be potentially catastrophic for hospitality, plus we’re dealing with uncertainty over Brexit. Having these trained professionals ready to come over to fill the shortfall in staff will be a lifeline for many employers.
‘What GR8 has done by looking for staff further afield is bypass the difficulties we have with recruiting within the Common Travel Area of the EU. They’ve used that local element of personally carrying out the interviews, which will reassure employers, and they’ve interviewed graduates from the Kenyan Utalli College’s Alumni Association, which is an institution that we’ve had a long and successful relationship with.
‘We could’t be more delighted that a local company has taken such pro-active steps to help support the problems faced by Jersey hospitality, and we look forward to welcoming these potential new employees to our island in 2020.’