Singapore’s hotel industry launched the Jobs Transformation Map (JTM)
on May 18 during the Human Capital Conference 2023 at Parkroyal on
Beach Road. The event was organised by the Singapore Hotel Association
and showcased how the JTM could enable Singapore’s hotel sector to
continue to grow in a world as technology and global trends reshape
hospitality roles and skills.
The PTM was jointly developed by the Singapore Tourism Board and
Workforce Singapore in consultation with 105 hotels and eight education
institutions. Its delivery was made by a partner of Ernst & Young,
Advisory ASEAN Workforce Advisory leader, Singapore Government &
Public Sector leader, Samir Bedi, during the conference.
Delegates heard about the new roles the “hotels of tomorrow” will
embody, such as hiring talents in sustainability, technologies and
placemaking. The latter role creates meaningful experiences in
partnership with the community.
Speakers honed in on the ways in which new talent can be drawn into the industry.
Bedi said that hotels need to create a new employee value proposition
to future-proof the workforce and “uplift” brand appeal to make the
sector more appealing.
Patsy Ng, Asia Pacific vice president HR, Hilton International Asia
Pacific, said HR and hotel employees need to be the true marketeers of
the industry. She added that technology had to “drive change to
reposition the hospitality industry as an industry of choice and to
enable staff to thrive and stay”.
Global studies have shown that millennials’ top priorities include
choice and flexibility in their careers, but since the hotel industry is
not known for such ideals, leaders need to re-define shift work, for
example. The reluctance to do split shifts can be tackled by leveraging
technology using “smart scheduling” which can calculate different
“permutations of part-time hours” and tap on new workforce segments such
as retirees and people with disabilities because people have different
needs and can work at different hours, said Ng.
Ng said that instead of advertising a job title, the industry needed
to talk about the essence of the job. For example, housekeeping jobs are
not just about cleaning, but about providing guests with a good night’s
sleep, hence creating a “life-transforming experience for guests” and
giving housekeeping compelling roles by deploying technology to assist
Conference demo: INTERLOCK GROUP’S Alyx, the delivery robot (right) removing a towel from Lily, the vending machine. Photo Credit: Patricia Wee
This last point was further affirmed by INTERLOCK GROUP’S Kevin
Singh, whose company recently sold six robots to JW Marriott Jakarta
Hotel. Guests make their in-room requests through WooHoo, a digital,
AI-enabled voice assistant. Singh said the robots freed up the time for
housekeeping to manage their work more efficiently especially when there
is a surge in guest check-ins.
During the panel discussion, industry overview and career
opportunities sessions, speakers touched on how the industry could
attract new talent from the polytechnics and the tertiary institutions.
Negative internship experiences were cited as issues that had to be
addressed. Interns need to be treated as individuals and hence
internships should be “curated” so that interns can see a career path,
said Andreas Sungaimin, senior vice president, Human Capital and
Development, Pan Pacific Hotels Group.
Arthur Kiong, Far East Hospitality’s CEO, said that streamlining job
functions and providing clearly scoped work helped staff at Far East Hospitality concept hotels in Sentosa
manage customers better. He added that to draw talent, one needed to
breathe meaning into roles and attract people from the shipyard and
warehouse sectors if polytechnic and tertiary graduate recruits are not
responding as desired.
Source: M&C Asia