In April 2022, UK Hospitality chief executive Kate Nicholls noted that a failure to tackle the labour shortage “will now stifle the sector’s ability to drive the wider economy”. The phrase “labour shortage” is probably one you’ve heard tossed around a lot the past few years, and despite there being a record 1.2M vacant jobs in the UK (Office for National Statistics, 2022), no one seems to be biting.
A few recent events have amalgamated into this crisis – COVID-19 saw a lot of businesses struggle to stay open and keep workers employed, and Brexit led to a mass exodus of staff, with more than 90,000 workers leaving the country or industry over 2020-2021 (Wadhera, 2021). Workers are also valuing themselves more, refusing to work unreasonable hours or settle for unliveable pay. Whilst there is not much we as a company can do about COVID or Brexit, we want to help entice staff back to the industry by ensuring living wages and benefits, something which will benefit both venues and workers.
Here at Barback we are committed to the industry, and care deeply about making it a welcoming environment for all workers. We’re currently partnering with organisations and companies to offer you a Barback industry discount card – providing incentives like F&B discounts, opportunities to access therapy, and many more. This will not only serve to attract workers back, but also provide much needed benefits to a wholly underappreciated sector. The hospitality industry has had it too hard for too long, and we are here to advocate for real change. As always, please feel free to contact us with any queries or suggestions – we always want to hear your voices and opinions.
‘We cannot become what we want by remaining what we are.’ – Max De Pree