The quest to attract and retain talent is becoming a major, and costly, challenge for hospitality organizations, big or small in today’s marketplace.

Tourism HR Canada reports that spending in Canada’s tourism sector could rise from nearly $187 billion in 2015 to more than $287 billion in 2035 (using inflation-adjusted 2010 dollars). Such growth will require 538,000 jobs to be created between 2015 and 2035. It also reports that current rates of labour force growth in the tourism sector suggest that 345,000 jobs can be created between 2015 and 2035 based on the number of workers available to fill those jobs. While this is impressive growth, it does limit the full expansion of Canada’s tourism sector.

Between 2015 and 2035, another 192,600 potential jobs could go unfilled, bringing the total number of unfilled tourism jobs during the 2010 to 2035 period to just under 240,000, 10.5 per cent of the jobs that potential spending would support.

These statistics point to the need for all organizations to develop a Talent Strategy that can ensure its survival in an increasingly competitive and tightening labour market by attracting, acquiring and retaining the right talent.

Tourism and hospitality enterprises have a customer strategy so it only makes sense they have a strategy for their internal customer. A good Talent Strategy will be based on thorough research that examines and highlights what the Employee Value Proposition (EVP) is – that is, why do employees want to work for this organization? Once the EVP is determined and a study of where there are current gaps in the human resources function, a Talent Strategy can be developed to ensure all aspects of the Talent Life Cycle are met. This will include the development of tools, systems and processes to meet the key phases of the Talent Life CycleAttracting, Acquiring, Enabling, Developing, and Retaining talent.

A well-researched, and deployed Talent Strategy, will ensure you reduce your turnover, attract and retain the best talent in your marketplace and improve your customer loyalty scores. This, in turn, reduces your labour costs and improves your return on the investment!

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