I’ve been writing about how difficult it is for restaurants to find decent staff for at least 25 years now, so there’s nothing new in the complaint that no one wants to work in hospitality any more.
The catering industry is seen as a fine place for temporary work, a fill-in during university holidays, perhaps, or when you are between proper jobs. But a longterm career? Forget it.
Brexit is only going to make the situation worse, and there are plenty of restaurateurs spending sleepness nights worrying about where they are going to find their workforce of tomorrow.
So it’s good to see the initiative Pizza Pilgrims are launching this month with their Pizza Academy in Camden. The idea is to give the young, ex-homeless, ex-offenders and anyone else who needs a fresh start the skills and qualifications they need to make a career in the hospitality business.
This timely reboot of Jamie Oliver’s Fifteen scheme has got to be a win-win, hasn’t it?
The students gain training and transferable skills, and Pizza Pilgrims gain a stream of potential new staff, plus the goodwill that such a social enterprise will inevitably bring.
We all spend so much time trying to come up with ever cleverer PR wheezes that it’s worth remembering sometimes all you need is to do the right thing.