Undergraduates’ perceptions of tourism and hospitality as a career choice

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Undergraduates’ perceptions of tourism and hospitality as a career

The global tourism and hospitality industry, and notably in Australia, is faced with the challenge of attracting and retaining quality employees which has resulted a lack of skilled personnel to meet the ever-expanding tourism and hospitality landscape. This challenge can be attributed to several factors. The possible causes for the lack of manpower include a young transient workforce, low levels of pay and formal qualifications, high level of female, student, part-time and casual workers, a high proportion of low skilled jobs, a large proportion of hours worked outside normal business hours, a negative industry image in the eyes of potential employees, a large number of migrant staff, poor utilisation of student labour and high levels of staff turnover. These factors contribute to the challenges in relation to recruitment and retention of quality staff in the industry.

In the tourism and hospitality industry, having a skilled, enthusiastic and committed personnel is essential for organisations to thrive in the industry.  As most of the communication between customers and clients in the industry involves face-to-face interaction, with the service being purchased and consumed concurrently; the standard of service provided is of utmost importance. Employee attitudes, performance and behaviour are key determinants of service quality which is positively correlated to customer satisfaction and loyalty.

An employee’s commitment to any industry is dependent on their perceptions and attitudes towards being engaged in the industry as well as the types of jobs available within the sector. This is of significance to tourism and hospitality because it has been reported that potential recruits have a negative impression of working in the industry. By having employees act as advocates for recruiting purpose can help have the edge over competitors. Hence, it is critical that tourism and hospitality management graduates have a positive attitude towards working in the industry.

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Participate in the upcoming QS Subject Focus Summit – “The Way Forward: Hospitality and Tourism Education Convergence with Industry 4.0” which will be held from 5-7 December 2018 in Kuching, Malaysia.