Government joins forces with industry to create next generation of hospitality leaders

Jobseekers are now able to access a new Government-backed employment programme designed to fill vacancies in the hospitality sector

  • New employment scheme launched in Liverpool to upskill and match jobseekers with hospitality roles
  • Jobseekers offered fast-tracked training and work experience to earn an industry recognised ‘Hospitality Skills Passport’
  • Pilot scheme set to be rolled out across other cities in the UK to address labour shortages with over 120,000 vacancies currently in the sector.

The pilot scheme, set to launch in Liverpool before being rolled out to other major cities over the coming months, will see benefit claimants gain an industry recognised accreditation, endorsed by industry leaders including Greene King, Marriot Hotels and ACC Liverpool.

The Hospitality Sector-based Work Academy Programme (SWAP) combines a unique programme of learning launched by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) in collaboration with UKHospitality.

The scheme is designed to provide tailored training for jobseekers from industry experts, allowing them to move into a career in hospitality, while boosting workforce participation in the sector and helping to grow the economy.

Benefit claimants will complete qualifications and accredited training in areas such as health and safety, food safety, licensing, and conflict resolution to add to their Hospitality Skills Passport – a digital pass which can be added to CVs to show employers jobseekers have the skillset required by the sector. They will also receive training in confidence and assertiveness to build personal skills and strength.

The programme will culminate with a guaranteed job interview for all participants, helping jobseekers with a valuable progression opportunity to apply their new skills and a pathway to apprenticeships.

Minister for Employment, Guy Opperman MP said:

"This innovative collaboration between DWP and UKHospitality is a national first and underscores our commitment to work with industry to address challenges, fill vacancies and grow the economy.

"The standardised and industry backed Hospitality Skills Passport will help bridge the gap for those looking for work in the hospitality sector, helping jobseekers to boost their skills and kickstart their careers."

Through practical, hands-on learning, jobseekers will reinforce their newfound skills with an opportunity to contribute to the industry from day one by completing work experience placements with some of the industry’s largest employers.

Following the pilot launch in Liverpool plans are in place to expand to other cities across England and Wales including London, Manchester and Birmingham from October.

Kate Nicholls, Chief Executive, UKHospitality said:

"Hospitality is a fantastic sector that offers a diverse variety of career opportunities, which is why it’s so well suited to helping people back into work. We’re delighted to be partnering with the Government to help run this exciting programme, which we hope can be a real positive for both jobseekers and businesses."

Chris Gamm, CEO of Springboard, said:

"We’re delighted to be involved with the trial, giving unemployed people the skills to launch their hospitality careers, helping them find exciting jobs with engaged local businesses and showcasing what fantastic development opportunities our industry offers through training and apprenticeships."

For more information and details of how to enrol on the Hospitality SWAP, Universal Credit claimants should speak with their Work Coach.

Department for Work and Pensions