Higher level hospitality qualifications: who wants them?

Williamson, D
Harris, C
Jones, N
Goodsir, W
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AUT University

A recent (2010) report by Business and Economic Research Limited (BERL) has highlighted concerns regarding qualification levels and productivity within the New Zealand hospitality workforce. The hospitality sector employs 6.6 percent of all working people in New Zealand, yet it only produces two percent of national gross domestic profit (GDP) (Stokes, Norman & Ganesh 2010). The report suggests the hospitality sector suffers from lower than average qualification rates, which may be one factor driving poor productivity performance. This paper focuses on the New Zealand hospitality accommodation sector and investigates the types of qualifications held by employees within a large hotel organisation. An online survey was completed by 172 respondents (59.3% response). The paper discusses the effect of gender, ethnicity and age on qualification rates and finds some support for Raybould and Wilkins (2005) suggestion that ‘baby boomer’ senior managers with low level qualifications may be hindering the advancement of younger, more educated employees.

Presentation at the 25th Conference of the Association of Industrial Relations Academics of Australia and New Zealand (AIRAANZ), Auckland, New Zealand
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