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Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media | Adequacy of trained personnel available to the hotel industry for the summer and winter months

To ask the Minister for Tourism; Culture; Arts; Gaeltacht; Sport and Media the extent to which she remains satisfied that adequate and sufficiently trained personnel remain available to the hotel industry, to ensure that the sector is adequately catered for in terms of accommodation throughout the summer and winter months; and if she will make a statement on the matter.


The latest research by Fáilte Ireland shows that while recruitment is still a significant challenge for tourism businesses, the situation is improving and employers are making positive strides. The number of vacancies across the industry has fallen, from circa 40,000 at the start of 2022 to around 22,000 today. Overall, positions have become less difficult to fill while staff retention has become less difficult. For employees,  hourly rates of pay have improved, compensation for working unsocial hours has become more common and job security among workers has grown.
My Department participates in the Tourism and Hospitality Careers Oversight Group which brings together industry representatives, state agencies, Government Departments and the education sector.

My Department and Fáilte Ireland are also working with industry and across Government to ensure a co-ordinated approach to addressing labour and skills shortages. For example, in  2022, my Department and Fáilte Ireland worked closely with the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment (DETE) to ensure processing times for work permits were reduced significantly. My Department and Fáilte Ireland have also worked with DETE to increase work permit application success rates by providing information sessions to industry. In 2023 and the years ahead my Department and Fáilte Ireland will continue to work with industry and recruitment experts to share best practice guidance on retention and building capability.
With regard to working conditions in the sector, Fáilte Ireland’s research indicates that 70% of people within the sector see tourism as a long-term career option. Around 70% of businesses surveyed indicated that they are increasing their pay and offering flexible work patterns, more stable work schedules and other benefits.

Fáilte Ireland has also launched a new “Employer Excellence” programme to help participating businesses to improve their employer practices, and enhance their reputation as excellent employers. This will help employers to drive great employee engagement, build the appeal of their workplace and unlock greater levels of performance across their business. Further initiatives undertaken include a Transition Year Work Placement Programme to give Transition Year students a high-quality work placement along with a major recruitment awareness campaign called “Works For Me” to encourage people of all ages to consider a career in the industry.
When we look at the wider economy and the particular set of challenges facing the tourism industry it is clear that a collective and concerted multi-stakeholder approach to tackling these challenges is required and that is the approach that my Department and I  will continue to pursue.

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