Raising the standards of working conditions as set out in the Greater Manchester Good Employment Charter has been proposed as a solution for hospitality sector businesses in the city-region that are faced with staff shortages after Brexit and the pandemic.
While the sector has begun to emerge from almost 18 months of lockdowns and restrictions, many bars, restaurants and venues are having their recovery hampered by staff shortages in the sector. Thousands of experienced workers have found employment in other industries and many EU nationals employed in the sector are now unable to work in the UK.
As a result, Night Time Economy Adviser, Sacha Lord, and Greater Manchester Local Enterprise Partnership Chair, Lou Cordwell, are encouraging employers in the sector to engage with the city-region’s Good Employment Charter: hospitality supported a third of Greater Manchester’s workforce, yet more than half of part-time workers earned below the Real Living Wage pre-pandemic. Signing up to the Charter allows employers to demonstrate their commitment to fair pay, secure work and wellbeing support to help attract more people to unfilled posts.
Sacha Lord, Night Time Economy Adviser for Greater Manchester, said:
“It is time to raise standards and ensure fair pay in our hospitality sector. As we rebuild from the devastating effects of Covid and Brexit on the sector, we can’t expect the youngest and hardest hit by the pandemic to be satisfied with minimum wage roles, when they can earn higher salaries elsewhere in office work or in retail.
“Greater Manchester is already a becoming leader in Good Employment in so many sectors thanks to our Good Employment Charter. The Charter supports employers to improve conditions for their employees, like paying the Real Living Wage, providing more flexible work and developing excellent recruitment practices. I believe our hospitality businesses now need to get on board and be at the forefront of Good Employment. Attracting the right people to our sector is critical to its survival and I believe this is the way to do it.”
Lou Cordwell, Chair of the Greater Manchester Local Enterprise Partnership (GM LEP), said:
“What the hospitality industry is now experiencing is nothing short of a staffing crisis. Hospitality is a fantastic sector to work in and Greater Manchester is full of brilliant venues and operators, but after almost 18 months of difficulty and uncertainty, jobseekers are understandably looking elsewhere.
“The best way for businesses to address this crisis is to set a new standard, and this starts with offering fair pay, secure work, better conditions and more opportunities to progress. That’s why we’re calling on employers to show they are committed to offering fair and secure work by becoming Supporters of the Good Employment Charter.”
Greater Manchester’s Good Employment Charter sets out seven features of good employment that employers must demonstrate they are working towards
- providing secure work
- providing flexible work
- working towards paying a Real Living Wage
- improving workplace engagement and voice
- developing excellent recruitment practices
- improving people management
- fostering employee health and wellbeing
Engaging with the Charter also offers a range of other long-term benefits. As part of a network of like-minded employers, Charter Supporters can attend regular events, access exclusive resources, and receive specialised support from Good Employment advisors.