Tourism partners discuss skills challenges within the industry |03 November 2023
Key players in the tourism industry met yesterday morning in a half-day session to share what their skills challenges are in terms of staffing their establishments and their views on the skills coming into the industry.
Leading the session held at the International Conference Centre was a tourism human resource expert, Lisa Gordon-Davis, who is also a United Nations World Tourism Organisation’s (UNWTO) consultant.
The tourism department requested the UNWTO to support a mission of an expert in this field, to conduct a human resource needs assessment in Seychelles’ tourism industry and to prepare a road map for human resource development in the tourism sector.
The new tourism strategy of the government aims to grow the demand for a higher value and lower impact tourism, enhance, diversify and differentiate products in the sector as well as facilitate the delivery of a high-performing tourism workforce.
Achieving such objectives and maintaining its competitive position in the aftermath of the Covid-19 pandemic, the tourism sector of Seychelles needs a labour force with the right skills set to cater for international demands.
Mrs Gordon-Davis will also be meeting key partners in the industry on Praslin and La Digue, and series of consultative meetings are also being held with relevant ministries, labour unions and tourism associations.
Speaking to journalists, the consultant said once all the needed information has been collected from the players in the tourism industry, then the planning can start to develop new interventions or improve the current trainings to supply the right and needed skills to the tourism industry.
“There is a need to engage with the partners in the tourism industry as they are the ones who are employing people and delivering services to visitors. So hearing from them is needed to ensure we plan correctly moving forward,” she added.
The director for industry human resource development in the tourism department, Diana Quatre, said there is a need to build a tourism workforce that is more competent.
“We need to empower people within this sector to deliver better, to improve service delivery which is crucial for the industry. The tourism department does not have a plan focused on human resource development for the industry so in order to develop this we want to know what we have in terms of skills supply and hear from our partners what their demands are,” she said.
Ms Quatre added that the consultant will then analyse the information collected to come up with recommendations to help bridge the gap between supply and demands.
“The information will also have an impact on the Seychelles Tourism Academy in terms of knowing if programmes should be added or removed. All with the aim to empower the local workforce of our tourism industry.”
Those taking part in the session worked in groups to discuss on various points such as the current skills gaps and needs in their businesses, their constraints in sourcing skilled workers in Seychelles, challenges in retaining employees. From there, they were also able to share recommendations on what can be done to source and retain skilled workers.
Photo by Joena Meme