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The recruitment crisis in the hospitality industry

Published 7th May 2021

The hospitality industry is facing a recruitment crisis. Restaurants, bars and cafes are struggling to fill front-of-house roles as they gear up to fully re-open in less than two weeks time.

For over a year now the big question has been, ‘when will hospitality re-open in the UK in 2021?’ So it’s no surprise that many feel apprehensive about returning to the industry.

The main reason for this recruitment challenge is that many people have looked for stability in other sectors such as essential retail, and a large number of Eastern Europeans have moved back home following the pandemic and post-Brexit.


So what does this mean for businesses preparing to open?


There’s certainly no shortage of hospitality jobs, and many businesses have increased their salaries to encourage more people to apply for the roles, with some offering as high as £15 per hour.

However, this appears to have had little impact on the volume of applications, particularly for bar staff.

Therefore, venue owners might have to consider limiting opening hours, even though they are expecting huge demand from customers.

Reducing opening hours must be the very last resort, as the hospitality industry has been hit hard by the pandemic and faces a long road to recovery.

Therefore, actively reaching out to individuals is essential in the recovery of this sector, and many owners are hoping that once university and college students break up for the Summer, a number of them will be looking for jobs.

The hospitality industry needs hard-working, creative and intuitive people.


Great service requires a number of skills, and those people that venues are hoping to recruit are the ones that will make a guest’s experience truly unforgettable.

The hospitality sector simply cannot thrive without those people, and support from apprenticeships and government-funded training is essential in making people realise why hospitality might be a good career choice for them.

Here at McCarthy we have supported the hospitality sector for many years and have recruited a number of roles both front and back of house, ranging from Chef’s to management roles.

We’re excited to see venues across the UK begin to fully re-open, and we’re looking forward to supporting them as best we can to help resolve the recruitment crisis in the hospitality industry.


  • Hospitality Recruitment Challenge
  • Hospitality Recruitment Issues
  • Hospitality Recruitment Crisis
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