More than 15 million jobs await Filipinos who want to work in top-rate hotels and restaurants in the United States, Europe and other countries in Asia, with about 158,000 hospitality and leisure jobs needed in the United States alone.
Labor requirements rose after hotel occupancy levels grew by 3.4% this year, a positive sign that the industry has now recovered from the global recession.
In a report released by the Asian School of Hospitality Arts (ASHA), the premier hotel school in the Philippines, the hospitality industry is expected to grow 11% this year, a strong indication that the industry has now recovered from the global recession.
With this growth, more five-star hotels and restaurants would need additional hotel, food and beverage managers, baristas and hospitality staff. These are supervisorial and skilled positions which Filipinos are qualified to fill in.
ASHA Directress Angie Blanco says Filipinos are most-sought after when it comes to these positions. Top five-star hotels hire more from the Philippines because Filipinos are highly qualified, trust-worthy and hard-working. Filipinos are more qualified because most are HRM (Hotel and Restaurant Management) graduates.
“ We have thousands of Filipinos in the hospitality and leisure industries which can benefit from the recovery of the industry after a slump in 2009. Entry levels in these positions are high. We are in the best position to exploit the hospitality job markets because of our high competency especially as hotel and restaurant managers, baristas and hotel staff, “ says Blanco.
Blanco reports that hotel occupancy in the United States alone grew by about 1.7% this year after occupancy rates rose in the first quarter of 2010. The growth increased revenues by 57.1%. This is a positive development, says Blanco, since more hotels will require additional hotel and hospitality staff to attend to the needs of guests.
Based on the ASHA report, hotel occupancy rates in the Asia-Pacific rose from 15.3% to 63.1%, the average daily rate increased by 8.6% to US$125.52, and revenue per available room jumped 25.2% to US$79.24. This, says Blanco, is based on the STR Global report.
Shanghai China experienced the largest occupancy increase, rising from 55% to 71.7%, followed by Beijing (65.3%), Hongkong (78.3%) and Osaka Japan (77.3%). Malaysia posted a positive 40.4% to US$ 71.65.
In the Philippines, improvements in the tourism industry generated close to 3 million additional jobs, according to the data released by the National Statistical Coordination Board (NSCB). As of May 2010, a total of 48,048 jobs were generated in Central Philippines, Metro Manila and Tagaytay alone. The hospitality outlook in the Philippines remains bright, says Blanco, as private investors continue to have a bullish attitude in the country.
Blanco says that domestic tourism alone hiked 2009 air traffic by about 25%. OAG, a reputable body monitoring the global air industry, shows that seat capacity increased by 9% or an additional 1.2 million to a total of 15.3 million seats in Asia-Pacific alone. Worldwide, seat capacity increased by 6% and added 20.5 million seats to a total 335.5 million.
Amongst the hotel chains, luxury properties and upscale hotels remain at a very positive growth. Performance of luxury hotels are strongest, while mid-scale properties with food and beverage should lag all property types with only 3.3% growth.
Lodging demands in the first quarter of 2010 increased by 5.3% over the first quarter of 2009. Blanco says if this trend continues, expect the hospitality and leisure-related job market to further improve in the next few years. In fact, Blanco adds, 2011 will see a 7.8% growth in the industry.
“The employment of hotel management staff is expected to grow just as fast as the average managerial position for all sectors through 2014. More opportunities are predicted to be available because many experienced managers will be leaving the industry to pursue other interests or through retirement. The better and higher education that is obtained, the more plentiful the opportunities will be” adds Blanco.