France: tourism needs between 200,000 and 300,000 employees

Destinations

This is the panorama presented this Monday by the vice president of the restaurant division of the main association of hospitality companies (UMIH), Jean Terlon, who in an interview with the France Info radio station, He said he feared a “historic” shortage of personnel ahead of the summer season.

“The pandemic has left its mark, that has not changed. We continue to have difficulties hiring because people during the pandemic have changed their lives and their way of working. Perhaps they have stayed in the food sectors, but they have left the restaurants,” Terlon explained.

To illustrate this, the representative of the Union of Trades and Hospitality Sectors (UMIH) indicated that there is a restaurant in Epernay, in the middle of the champagne region that has been distinguished with a Michelin star and that, however, has not been able to reopen “because it lacks staff”.

A tourist in front of the Eiffel Tower. Photo: Eph.

He emphasized that customers have returned, while employees in the sector no longer want to work as they used to and, above all, they are reticent with hours late at night or during weekends and holidays.

In this situation, the employer representative stressed that workers have “a full offer” and can choose the establishment that best suits them to combine professional life and private life. “There have never been so many options, so you have to take advantage of it, it’s still an exciting job,” he said.

How can the sector adapt? Terlon pointed out that it is “a bit complicated” and illustrated it with an anecdote: “an employee says he doesn’t want to work on Saturdays and Sundays, the boss asks him why, and he replies that he would like to take advantage of his weekend to go to a restaurant”.

As he explained, it is a profession where there are three categories of people, the passionate, the ‘why not’ and the predetermined. “Today only the enthusiasts remain. And you have to convince the ‘why not’ that it is a wonderful job, that it requires passion. Restoration is a moment of pleasure, and it has to be that way again,” she defended.

More information on the workforce crisis in the sector:

-Chaos in the UK: more flights canceled ahead of Easter

This is how hotels look for workers in the midst of a personnel crisis

– Staff shortage threatens sector recovery in 2022