Hospitality prospects continue to dwindle

By Andrea Tamba · Nov 27, 2022

The hospitality sector has been struggling to find a way out of a recruitment crisis ever since the beginning of the pandemic, with vacancies rocketing month after month to 174,000 as of recently. Now, the industry faces the additional pressures of a cost of living crisis this winter, and it could prove to be fatal for a lot of the nation’s businesses.

During the third quarter of this year, the industry experienced a small win, as job vacancies fell by 15,000, according to the Office of National Statistics (ONS). However, as of now, vacancies within the sector still currently sit at three times the national average, according to a survey by UKhospitality, which means 11% of roles are still  unfilled, compared to 4% found in other industries.

The current cost of living crisis is stunting any hope of consistent progress, as spiking energy costs are forcing businesses to increase the cost of their services. On the other side of the same coin, consumers are being more cautious with their spending habits: A Study by DMA revealed that 78% of consumers (compared to 70% pre cost of living crisis) will spend time researching products before making a purchase to get the best value. 39% of the 2003 respondents admitted that they were cutting back on eating out and 21% said that they had stopped drinking out altogether.

Naturally, this has adverse effects on the nation's pubs and restaurants. These businesses were already operating on cut hours due to a lack of staff, but paired with dwindling consumer demand, this could prove particularly fateful for some.

In fact, according to the findings of Greater Manchester Night Time Economy Adviser Sacha Lord, there had been a 46% increase in hospitality insolvencies in the quarter to September.