Of the estimated 2.2 million workers in UK hospitality, those over 50 account for 25% of the workforce.
Despite this representation, a new report from The Caterer suggested that employers could be doing more to support the demographic, as just 16% run dedicated returner or work re-entry programmes.
Carla Ramos, people and culture manager at Royal Garden Hotel, said the over 50s have always been part of five-star hotel’s inclusive recruitment programme.
Speaking to HR magazine, she said: “There are huge advantages in recruiting from this age group: more experience, more resilience, punctuality and attendance.
“This is a generation that is highly motivated, and although the cost of living might be boosting this age group to look for extra work in hospitality, we can also see that many of the new hires are returning to the industry or moving within it, either for progression or better conditions.”
Due to labour shortages 62% of hospitality professionals surveyed said they believe the sector is actively hiring more inclusively, and a quarter (25%) said workers over 50 will be important to solving talent gaps.
To accommodate a diverse workforce Ramos said flexibility is key.
She added: “It is also clear the pandemic has been hard on this group and hospitality remains a sector that attracts those who are looking for a sense of purpose and belonging.
“As with most age groups, flexibility to different working patterns, training and good working conditions are paramount to successfully recruit.”
The Caterer’s Hospitality Hiring Insider report is based on an analysis of job advert data and a survey of 600 hospitality professionals in September 2022.