Fall 2011 Issue

Ready to Work Graduate Conquers Fears and Finds Foodservice Success

Life Experience + Skills Development + Workplace Training = New Career

After years of devoting herself full time to raising her seven children, maintaining her household and eventually helping to care for her grandchildren, Iris Henry was at a crossroads—it was time to re-enter the workforce. However, having left school long ago and with little work experience, the idea of starting fresh and searching for new employment seemed overwhelming. Luckily for Ms. Henry, her sons had been involved with Ready to Work, a national program that helps individuals find long term, rewarding careers in the tourism and hospitality sector.

The Ready to Work program is a unique combination of classroom and workplace training that fosters career awareness and skills development, while also providing practical, on the job experience. With some previous experience as a prep cook and the diverse set of skills she had developed as a homemaker, Ms. Henry felt that the Ready to Work program might be good preparation for choosing a new occupation and finding her new career. A quick check with the local economic development office revealed that a twelve week Ready to Work class was being offered in Whitewood, Saskatchewan by the Saskatchewan Tourism Education Council. Read More...

Family Owned Québec Hotels Build Profit by Investing in Employees

The Milot family has a long, successful history in the accommodations industry, and their experience shows when examining the human resource practices at their properties. Owners and operators of Hotel Quality Suites in Drummondville, Québec, and Le Dauphin in Québec City, their original and flagship property is Le Dauphin Hotel and Suites in Drummondville.

Le Dauphin opened its doors in 1963, and has been passed down from generation to generation over the years, remaining a family run business.  Extensive renovations over the last twenty years have transformed Le Dauphin into a full service hotel and meeting facility with many options for both tourists and business travelers. Le Dauphin features 120 rooms and suites, including extended stay suites that can be used as family accommodations or as meeting space, 25 meeting rooms which can accommodate up to 500 people, the upscale Globe-Trotter restaurant, and Menus Plaisirs bistro and bar. These modern amenities and Drummondville`s convenient location halfway between the business centres of Montréal and Québec  City make it easy to understand why Le Dauphin is the hotel of choice for business functions in the province. Read More...

Tourism and the Last Two Years

Every two years, the Canadian Tourism Human Resource Council (CTHRC) conducts an in-depth labour study that looks at how Canada’s tourism sector will be affected by current labour conditions and the existing economic environment. The first in a series of reports, The Future of Canada’s Tourism Sector was released in June 2008. At that time, the tourism sector faced a worker shortage equal to 24,000 unfilled tourism jobs. In October of 2008, the number of people employed in Canada reached a record high of 17,215,800 and the unemployment rate stood at 6.2%.1 However, that was before the effects of the subprime mortgage crisis drove much of the world into recession. From October 2008 through August 2009, the number of jobs in Canada dropped by 414,000 and the unemployment rate rose to 8.7%.2 It was in the latter half of 2009, as the Canadian economy was beginning to recover, that the most recent tourism labour study was conducted. It found that the number of surplus workers available to the tourism industry could fill 34,000 jobs. However, it was expected that as the economy recovered, job creation would reduce that surplus. Based on current trends, it was predicted that by 2012 tourism jobs would once again be going unfilled due to a lack of workers. The full report, The Future of Canada’s Tourism Sector: Economic Recession only a Temporary Reprieve from Labour Shortages, is available as a free download on the CTHRC website. Read More...

Workplace Matters Panel Continues to Inform CTHRC Research Activities

Tourism businesses are encouraged to participate in this important online forum

In 2008, as part of its ongoing efforts to improve the quality of the Canadian tourism labour force, the CTHRC developed an online forum to gather and share information related to human resource practices in the tourism sector in Canada.  Since then, the Workplace Matters panel has grown to include over 600 tourism business owners and human resource personnel. Panel members respond to short monthly surveys allowing the CTHRC and its provincial partners to receive timely feedback from tourism businesses and industry HR representatives. The opinions and expertise provided by the panel members help the CTHRC identify and respond to the operational and occupational issues that are currently impacting the workforce, or will affect human resources in the tourism sector in the future.

Input from the Workplace Matters panel has been instrumental in several research projects conducted by the Council. In 2008, the Alliance of Sector Councils (TASC) initiated a trends analysis project. Sixteen sector councils – including the CTHRC – have participated in this project which collects current intelligence on human resource trends in the Canadian economy. This collected intelligence is reported to Human Resources and Skills Development Canada. As of summer 2011, Workplace Matters panellists have contributed to this project five times, allowing TASC to monitor HR trends in the tourism sector and analyze how those trends compare to other sectors of the Canadian economy. Read More...

It Costs You to Replace Employees, but It Pays to Train

What are you getting back from your investment in Training? How much are you spending on constantly replacing staff? The CTHRC has the tools to provide the answers

Having well trained, professional employees is important for any business, but determining the actual cost and value of training can be difficult. The Canadian Tourism Human Resource Council (CTHRC) is pleased to offer a Return on Training Investment tool (ROTI) that provides businesses with the means to identify the costs and benefits of training in real dollar values. Available for free online at Employers of Choice, ROTI calculates the cost of training, return on training investment, and the number of weeks required to recover the cost of training by comparing six performance measures before and after training: sales, upselling, staff turnover, customer satisfaction, employee competence, and cost savings. Read More...

World Tourism Day Celebrates Cultural Understanding Through Travel

Foreign trained workers bring diversity and tolerance to work and community

The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) recognizes September 27 as World Tourism Day, a day dedicated to raising the awareness of the importance of tourism to the global community and its social, cultural, political, and economic value. The theme for World Tourism Day 2011 is Tourism– Linking Cultures. In 2010, 940 million tourists travelled outside of their home country; this incredible amount of international travel serves to introduce people to unfamiliar cultures and helps foster global understanding and increased tolerance of different traditions.

The economic importance of the tourism sector in Canada is undeniable. Tourism is a growth engine and a job generator even in times of economic uncertainty, in every community, in all regions of the country. It generates $74 billion in economic activity annually and employs more than 1.6 million people– one in ten Canadian workers. The demand for tourism goods and services is expected to continue to rise as tourists from emerging markets such as China, India and Brazil begin travelling abroad in greater numbers. Read More...