The latest news and advice from our recruitment experts.
New Zealand is absolutely booming when it comes to tourism and hospitality.
Although the Kaikoura earthquake is likely to put a slight dent in the numbers of international visitors, the latest Government statistics for the 12 months to September reveal the country attracted 3,387,000 visitor arrivals – a huge jump of 11% on the previous year’s figures – and the 1,745,000 visitors who were coming for a holiday was a 17% increase.
The data also shows 6% growth in nights spent in hotels, motels, holiday parks and backpackers, and an 18% increase in the amount of money spent by tourists when they visit here. The amount of money spent by visitors from China ($1.8 billion) is up 33% and from Korea ($293 million) up 92%.
And possibly most telling of all is the Government’s forecast that these visitor arrivals will hit 4.5 million per year by 2022 and bring $16 billion onto our shores.
Against these sort of inspirational numbers, it’s clear to see that businesses in New Zealand’s holiday hotspots and tourism destinations are going to have to make serious inroads into upping their recruitment strategies to make the most of the what looks like a potential bonanza.
At QJumpers we’ve developed tools designed to help businesses target the right candidates, fill vacancies or bring in additional employees as fast and efficiently as possible. For example, Hospo Recruit has been set up in conjunction with Hospitality NZ specifically to manage a talent pool of thousands of hospitality job-seekers and find solutions to regular hurdles such as immigration, working visas and seasonal demand.
In the blog, we’ve already discussed the recruitment issues faced by employers during the 23 potential days lost each year due to public holidays, and how the summer holiday season highlights the need to future-proof your staffing and recruitment systems, but for businesses operating in the towns, cities and regions which cater specifically to the millions of tourists who arrive each year, here’s our list of the challenges and benefits they face.
Seasonal variation: It’s vital to identify peak and low times – and it’s not necessarily going to correspond with New Zealand-based holidays. For example many tourists from northern European countries travel in the lead-up to Christmas and China’s “Golden Week” at the start of October sees millions of tourists heading overseas. Depending on your business, overseas university holidays might also see a rise in the number of both tourists and potential workers.
Quality: If you are looking to augment your workforce for short periods of peak demand, it is important to choose quality applicants. Knowing and understanding the talent pool is vital to ensuring you fill roles swiftly with the highest calibre of applicant.
Checks: Many potential candidates are likely to be on working holiday or temporary work visas so it’s important to be able to carry out the necessary checks and legislation around how long they can work for. For people who have worked overseas, background and reference checks can also be difficult to manage.
Longevity and reaction times: A serious challenge to filling casual positions or roles required to respond to short periods of busy turnover is that many candidates might not be looking to stay in roles for long. You need to have a robust recruitment strategy so that you can react fast to fill vacancies as well as attracting and retaining good quality candidates.
Language: As more tourists come to New Zealand from different parts of the world, your workforce may have to adapt to their requirements. Visitors from China and Korea account for a huge proportion of the money coming into New Zealand and there are growing numbers from South America too – having employees who speak those languages can help your business thrive and grow. Of course, this brings challenges to your recruitment as well as you need to be able to be sure of employees’ credentials even if they are in a foreign language.
Forecasts: Making predictions within a changing market can be tough – and the Kaikoura earthquake only goes to show how even one event can change a potential outlook. It is important though to keep accurate reports of year-on-year change as well as keeping track of how well your recruitment strategy is performing to give you the best basis on which to forecast the next 12 months’ business.
Accommodation: A by-product of New Zealand’s success story is that huge amounts of our housing stock in holiday hotspots is now being used for tourism. Disruptive companies such as Airbnb and Book-a-bach mean that it can be difficult to recruit and retain casual staff as they have few accommodation choices within their cash bracket.
You’re already a focus: There’s a fair chance that the talent pool is already fully aware of what you need and how you operate. New Zealand’s booming tourism industry means that there are tourism colleges and courses turning out hundreds of people well-versed in what the industry requires. Your job is to find the right fit to your business.
Preparation and systems are used annually: Any established business in a busy tourist destination should have years of data on which to draw to show how to cope with growth and change. Sure, the rate of growth is expected to increase, but most businesses will already know the recruitment requirements to adapt and thrive.
Social media: The advent of social media has revolutionised how businesses can manage their talent pool. The speed with which people can now be informed of roles, vetted and brought onboard regardless of where they are in the world makes for more nimble and fast-reacting businesses. It also means that some of you best recruiters are likely to be your existing staff – their social media posts will tell the world about your business, brand and opportunities.
For more information on how QJumpers can provide recruitment software and services to help your business cope with New Zealand’s soaring tourism and hospitality success, contact us on 0800 758673, email@example.com or via our website.
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