Education & Career Trends: The way ahead for Hospitality Students

4 min read

Edition: June 22nd, 2021
Curated by the Knowledge Team of ICS Career GPS


We are entering an era where instead of hyper-specialisation you need to have to multiple livelihood options. (Image Credit: Freepik)

Excerpts from article by Vikram Chaudhary, published in Financial Express

The impact of COVID-19 on the hospitality sector has been severe. However, as India vaccinates her population, things are expected to get better. Hospitality experts anticipate that the sector’s occupancy and average daily rate will reach pre-COVID levels by 2022 and 2023.

In the meantime, what should jobseekers do?

  • Hospitality students tend to perform well in the services sector.
  • While many graduates pursue careers in traditional hospitality, about half of them work in other industries delivering service excellence to customers.
  • Excellence in the future will be defined by the quality of human interactions, which explains why other industries are actively recruiting hospitality graduates.
  • Although hospitality sector will bounce back, the growth is likely a few quarters away.
  • Skills acquired across the hospitality value chain can be leveraged in many other areas.
  • Soft skills like customer service, multitasking and people management can be used across industries and more so in new-age digital businesses.
  • As more e-commerce, retail and other technology businesses emerge and large ones become bigger, customer service personnel will be in demand.
  • Content writing is another viable option for hospitality graduates to consider in the interim.
  • While in hospitality there are hyper-specialised roles, there are also roles that can be found in other sectors, such as sales, customer service, front desk, etc.
  • Foodtech experts said that hospitality graduates who have trained in hyper-specialised job roles can start small units such as baking bread with a capital of just Rs 2-3 lakh, catering to localised requirements. In addition to baking, manufacturing of pickle, jam, jelly, ketchup, etc, can be easily set up, said experts.
  • Artisanal food and customisation of food is also a promising area.

Why you shouldn’t wait

  • It’s not a good idea to wait for relevant jobs.
  • Any kind of job experience will work to people’s advantage.
  • Most employers give additional weightage if they know you have kept yourself gainfully occupied even during the pandemic.

Good time for higher education

  • For students who have just graduated or are about to graduate, this is an ideal time to look for continuing education opportunities that are focused on inculcating new skills.
  • They can consider higher education that incorporates a whole set of new skills required for jobs of the future.
  • Hospitality students must also broad-base the opportunities of employment available to them besides just the core hospitality sector.
  • Several sectors that have strong customer centricity are now recovering, such as real estate, aviation and retail, and they look for hospitality graduates.

Upskilling is important

  • Going forward, norms and operating procedures of restaurants, hotels, etc, are likely to change.
  • Dependency on digital tools will increase and processes to track customer behaviour are likely to rise.
  • Hospitality skilling sector will do well to adopt digital tools, research and customer psychology-related modules in their courses.
  • To make hospitality courses fungible with other customer-centric sectors, customer relationship management, research and related digital courses will need to be embedded.
  • They should also add digital and entrepreneurial skills to their portfolio.
  • We are entering an era where instead of hyper-specialisation you need to have to 2-3 livelihood options.
  • Digital skills add a safety net. As does entrepreneurship certification; if you’re an enterprising person, you will thrive.

Advice to hospitality students

  • Students who have trained in hyper-specialised roles can shift their attention towards cloud kitchen.
  • Soft skills acquired in the hospitality management learning journey are transferable to other industries also.
  • Hospitality students must consider courses that specialise in service operations, design, quality & excellence.

(Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in the above mentioned article are those of the author(s). They do not purport to reflect the opinions or views of ICS Career GPS or its staff.)

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