Tourism industry gets help to find workers

TOTA predicts there will be 12,000 new jobs in tourism in the region by 2020 but 1,600 of those jobs won't have people to fill them.

Ginger Brunner

The tourism industry in the southern Interior is getting some help to find the thousands of new workers it says it will need over the next four years.

B.C.’s tourism and hospitality human resource association, go2HR,  has appointed a regional human resources specialist to address what the Thompson Okanagan Tourism Association predicts will be a major labour market challenge here.

It says the new HR specialist, Ginger Brunner, will be based in the Thompson Okanagan Tourism Association’s office in Kelowna,

According to TOTA, the new position—created in partnership between it and go2HR—was established because finding tourism staff is becoming increasingly difficult, particularly in regions outside the Lower Mainland.

It says that by 2020 there will be more than 12,000 new, full-time equivalent job openings in the tourism sector in this region alone, and a shortage of more than 1,600 full-time equivalent staff.

By having Brunner join the TOTA office, the association says go2HR will extend its professional reach into his area.

Brunner is a certified human resource professional and trainer with more than 15 years of applied human resources and management experience in the tourism and hospitality industry. She brings experience in developing, facilitating and supporting HR programs, as well as facilitating a range of college and university recruitment initiatives.

The plan is for her to work with tourism operators and stakeholders here to set up recruitment, retention and training initiatives outlined in both the provincial Tourism Labour Market Strategy and the Thompson Okanagan Regional Tourism Strategy.

“By working with go2HR, TOTA is able to help ensure that tourism employers will have the right number of qualified employees to meet the demand of the industry and help increase the Thompson Okanagan’s impeccable reputation for visitor experience,” said Glenn Mandziuk, TOTA’s president and CEO.

“Our expanded role in destination development activities supported by our provincial crown corporation Destination British Columbia further enabled this important program to be established in the region.”


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