Combating the labour market shortages has been the major shift for hospitality since this time last year when we, as an industry, were fighting to open borders and cement processes and procedures to keep our employees and guests safe.

Ensuring we are retaining and rewarding those who have proven themselves during recent times has never been more important. However, for many hotels and hospitality service providers, there is still the perception of doubt relating to trust and career progression within the industry.

Fostering Talent & Creating Opportunities

One business that is in the process of overcoming this challenge is ahs hospitality, who continue to add rungs to their ladder of opportunities for standout team members, an example of this is ahs hospitality’s Operations Manager, Kirk Blair. Let’s set the scene of succession for you, Kirk was recently employed by ahs hospitality as an Operations Manager overseeing a portfolio of hotels across the Gold Coast and in just 6 short months, has proven himself a strong and well-rounded leader. To recognise his recent successes, Kirk has been promoted to head up South East Queensland.

Kirk is now the General Manager of Southeast Queensland, almost doubling his portfolio of hotels and increasing his workload to include supporting and leading ahs hospitality’s Operations Managers, Hotel Managers and clients across Brisbane, Sunshine Coast and the Gold Coast. When asked about his new appointment Kirk responded:

“When Leanne (Executive General Manager of ahs hospitality) came to me with this opportunity I was very excited and eager to get stuck in. Of course, I knew this would be a larger workload, but Leanne assured me both herself, the fellow leadership team, and our Operations Managers will continue to work collaboratively and support one-another to achieve our new goals for Southeast Queensland.”

Kirk elaborated on his own ambitions to continue to grow his portfolio and increase their current pipeline of talent across housekeeping to align with rising occupancies. He spoke highly of the hardworking housekeeping teams he works side-by-side with as an Operations Manager when occupancy rates were regularly fluctuating, making it difficult to have staff on-hand. He believes progression like his own at every level of their business is essential in retaining staff at a time when labour shortages are high.

When we spoke with Leanne Graham, Executive General Manager of ahs hospitality, she commented: “Creating opportunities for progression within our industry is essential to retaining employees. At ahs hospitality we have reviewed and upgraded our entire Employee Value Proposition to attract fresh faces and, most importantly, retain those who have been loyal and dedicated to the business. Kirk is just one example of an employee who has benefited from ahs hospitality restructuring our service lines to develop growth and opportunity.”

Leanne continues to speak of the time, resources, and energy her team have dedicated to sourcing new avenues to attract and retain employees. As a business that is primarily focused on labour management within our industry, they felt challenged to think outside the box. From adding their self-branded rewards platform, to increasing their employee benefits and experimenting with multiple attraction campaigns across Instagram, Facebook, Youtube and Google, as well as all the mainstream job advertising platforms, ahs hospitality are using every tool at their disposal. In the meantime, Leanne is confident the labour market will bounce back as immigration continues to open-up and stability returns to the hospitality industry.

Company contact details

If you want to learn more about ahs hospitality and the labour services they provide, visit their website.