New hospitality development programme launches

Scheme seeks to develop talent to help sector rebuild in wake of COVID-19

Staff member with face mask

A NEW hospitality development programme which seeks to develop talent to help the sector rebuild in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic has been launched.

The Tourism and Hospitality Talent Development Programme, which will be delivered by the Hospitality Industry Trust (HIT) Scotland and the Scottish Tourism Alliance (STA), covers leadership, management and supervisory skills, with each of the three levels comprising ten modules, which will be delivered online over ten weeks.

Applications for the Scottish Government-funded programme are open to anyone over the age of 16 working in the hospitality or tourism industry in Scotland and can be submitted via the HIT Scotland website by 5th February. There will be 975 places available on the programme: 13 groups of 25 people in each of the three categories (supervisor, manager, leader), with the programme due to start on 16th February.

The scheme was one of the key recommendations of the Tourism Task Force which provided recommendations to the Scottish and UK Governments on actions needed to help the tourism and hospitality sectors’ recovery in Scotland.

David Cochrane MBE, chief executive of HIT Scotland, said the programme aims to “motivate and develop individuals in a position of influence so they can be even more effective and supportive for their teams”.

“The tourism and hospitality industries continue to deal with the many challenges that COVID-19 has brought, but I am pleased that we can start 2021 with some positive news about personal development and the recovery of our industry,” he said.

“As an industry-led charity which provides inspirational development for the Scottish hospitality industry, HIT Scotland is delighted to be involved in this programme which will be providing leadership, management and supervisory training to give the leaders of our industry the tools to support their teams and get them ready for the recovery.

“Tourism and hospitality are key to Scotland’s economy, and I believe that this programme will ensure the industry can return to its best.”

Marc Crothall, chief executive of the STA, said the launch of the programme “represents a shining light and hugely positive move forward in the darkest period our industry has ever experienced”.

“It is absolutely critical that we focus on the development of our people and future skills agenda, in line with one of the key priorities of Scotland’s future tourism strategy, Outlook 2030, to lead us through recovery and deliver what will undoubtedly be a different offering in our post-COVID world,” he said.