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Restaurant Association launches new Springboard programme to address hospitality skills shortage

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A new joint initiative between the Ministry of Social Development, and the hospitality industry has been launched to fill the critical skills shortage in the hospitality industry.

The Hospitality Springboard is a pilot initiative that will initially work with around 80 members to upskill and train their employees so businesses can retain staff and keep them employed.

The Government-sector initiative will bring employers and employees together to nurture current talent and encourage career development in hospitality.

It will provide wellbeing support, wage supplements and wrap-around training, ranging from three to 24 months across a range of courses – from short entry-level courses to certifications such as Licence Controller Qualification (LCQ), leadership training and up to two years NZQA Level Four courses, such as chefs training.

The Restaurant Association has worked with MSD on the creation and roll out of the programme.

This is a critical time for our industry, coming off one of the most challenging trading years in recent history. This is welcomed support. Hospitality has been in growth for more than 10 years and yet we’ve struggled to find the necessary workers to fill the demand.

This year’s challenges have been intensified by the border closure which has meant the usual overseas workers that would ordinarily fill those gaps are no longer available to us. The time is ripe to ensure we are able to attract and train a new wave of recruits to sustain our industry for the future.

A recent survey of Restaurant Association members found 78 per cent had difficulty recruiting staff for their business. 84 per cent said they had not seen an increase in suitable New Zealanders applying for the roles.

The Springboard Programme follows on the heels of our successful HospoStart programme, another joint initiative between the Ministry of Social Development and the Restaurant Association which trains job seekers into a new career in hospitality. The programme has trained and supported 780 of workers into the industry since it launched in 2015.

The Springboard programme officially launched on 11th December.


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