Pink Slip Dubai, the UAE’s pioneering recruitment and HR networking group teamed up recently with Hot Hoteliers, a leading hospitality networking group, to host a high-level recruitment forum that discussed the current state of recruitment within the local hospitality sector.

Gerald Lawless, Executive Chairman of Jumeirah Group during the event.
Gerald Lawless, Executive Chairman of Jumeirah Group during the event.

Gerald Lawless, Executive Chairman of Jumeirah Group, was the keynote speaker of the night, addressing an audience of over 250 industry professionals on the importance of human capital to an organization and the ongoing need to train and develop staff.

The hotel veteran also announced Jumeirah’s ambitious plans to open properties this year in Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Kuwait, Frankfurt, Shanghai, Maldives and Baku and to have 60 hotels in operation or under development by the end of 2012. The Jumeirah Group currently employs over 11,000 professionals across the world and Lawless highlighted that recruitment within the Group will be a crucial part of its on-going development plans.

The keynote was followed by a panel discussion of HR experts on the recruitment realities of the hospitality sector in 2011. Moderated by media consultant Tariq Qureishy, panelists included the Director of Recruitment for Jumeirah, the VP of Human Resources for Middle East & Africa at Movenpick Hotels and Resorts, the Associate Director of Human Resources at Rotana Group, the Managing Director of the Hospitality Company and the Director of Boyden Middle East Executive Search, who all shared their current outlook of the industry.

Matthew Lewis, Director at Boyden Middle East said: “With the region having to create 50 million jobs over the next 10 years, the hotel industry has a huge role to play in developing talent and creating opportunity. The region will benefit from depressed western economies being supplemented with both tourists and staff from the east. In order to reduce staff turnover and increase moral it is essential that the leaders in the sector embrace training and development and make Middle East-based hotel firms the best in the world to work for.”

According to Lourda Sexton, Founder of Pink Slip Dubai and co organizer of the event, the recruitment market in the UAE needs to become more developed.

She said: “Both job seekers and employers need to start a more informed dialogue and Pink Slip Dubai is providing a platform to break down communication barriers and allow professionals in the UAE to gain access to employers, recruiters and knowledge within their relevant industry sectors.”

The evening allowed guests to mingle with their peers in the hospitality industry and also provided an opportunity for job seekers looking to break into the hospitality industry, with numerous recruiters and employers on hand to offer recruitment advice.

HR managers from leading hotel companies such as TDIC, the Atlantis and Armani attended the event. Hot Hoteliers and Pink Slip Dubai plan to host similar recruitment forums throughout 2011.