Hotels To Operate At 100% Capacity; is this a game-changer for employees?
Hotels To Operate At 100% Capacity the Philippine Department of Tourism announced on Wednesday 21st October 2020.
The announcement of Hotels To Operate At 100% Capacity will only apply to those in GCQ (General Community Quarantine and MGCQ (Modified General Community Quarantine) areas. It will also be subject to the hotel management’s decision and compliance with safety guidelines.
“Allowing the accommodation sector to operate at full capacity will be most welcomed by tourism’s workforce that has been greatly affected since the community lockdown,” Berna Romulo-Puyat, DOT Secretary Wednesday 21st October 2020.
International Tourism is set to remain closed until the 2nd quarter of 2021.
But how will this affect Hospitality & Tourism Businesses and their workforce?
After 7 months of closure for the majority of hospitality and tourism businesses, and with significant financial losses, is this announcement, Hotels To Operate At 100% Capacity, going to be a game-changer for owners and employees?
Sad to say, it is unlikely. The drive to re-ignite Domestic Tourism and kick start the industry is not resulting in any significant changes. Very few people are visiting the destinations that are already open to tourism. Often this is due to the restrictive and expensive travel requirements implemented by LGU’s. But lack of income for the average Filipino, for the last 7 months, is also a major factor in people staying away.
In August 2020 MY RANGGO released the results of a survey, carried out with owners and employees. Click to read our 1st Sentiment Survey: The Effects Of COVID-19 On Hospitality & Travel Industry Staff And Owners, in full.
In this survey:-
- 13% of Owners had already reduced some of their workforce to part-time hours
- 24% of Owners had employees on No Work No Pay
- 31% of Businesses advised they would be making some of their workforce redundant.
- 49% said they were planning for reduced operations, when they do re-open, with Fewer Full-Time Staff (49%), Fewer Part-time Staff (17%), a Hiring Freeze (37%) and Redundancies (15%), in order to reduce their Overheads until bookings are back to pre-COVID levels.
- 26% of owners think it will be 18 months to 2 years before their bookings are back to Pre-COVID levels and
- 21% of owners think it will be 12-15 months before their bookings are back to Pre-COVID levels.
In our next survey, Status of the Philippine Hospitality & Tourism Industry September 2020, set to be released publicly this week, 29% of Tourism and Hospitality owners said that they do not intend to re-open until international tourists are allowed back in to the Philippines in 2021. And 11% have already either closed their business, or will be closing their business, permanently.
What does this mean for the industry’s workforce and OJT’s?
Well, some employees may well be able to return to work. But many will continue to be affected by unemployment, and no income, due to factors such as:
- The business location remaining closed to tourism
- The business remaining closed
- The business operating a skeleton workforce until international tourists return
- Further redundancies with businesses remaining closed, or closing permanently
- Not being able to return to work because their area is still under quarantine, they don’t have the funds to travel back, or their position has been filled by a locally-based employee because they couldn’t travel back.
- 12% of owners, where their business has re-opened, have had to recruit and train new staff because some of their original staff have either resigned or are currently unable to return to the location where the business is* (* Status of the Philippine Hospitality & Tourism Industry September 2020)
This situation could also impact on OJT’s (On Job Training). It may be logical to think that hospitality and tourism business would welcome students as extra employees with minimum spending. But many owners are saying they don’t plan to open yet.
Many owners may not have a full workforce and may keep it this way for some time, to keep their business Overheads to a minimum. Business owners may consider inexperienced hospitality student an added burden on a tight workforce. And many may not offer OJT placements at all this year because of this. Especially if their most experienced employees have not been able to return to work.
There is hope for OJT’s though, with some industry experts offering On The Web Training (OWT) instead. Colleges and Universities are welcoming OWT as an alternative to on-location placements, as students access training and modules run by industry experts with direct experience.
MY RANGGO has entered this OWT arena too. Our team has a combined total of more than 100 years’ experience in the Hospitality, Tourism, and Service Industry across a range of sub-sectors; hotels and resorts, restaurants, cruise ships, spas, hotel software supplies, travel agencies, tour operators, even the BPO industry.
With all this experience under our belt and an immense passion for the industry and its people, along with the increasing need for online learning portals, we have decided to offer immersive ON-THE-JOB training packages to students. Check out our modules and courses here.
Guidelines for Hotels wanting to operate at 100% capacity will be released by the DOT soon.