Despite the significant impact on the hotel and hospitality sector due to the restrictions introduced because of COVID-19, the hotel industry in Killarney is still looking forward to 2021.

This week saw South Kerry Development Partnership (SKDP) launch their third recruitment fair for the sector. The 2021 event will be one with a twist however as it is currently planned in a virtual format.

Part of SKDP’s SICAP programme, the event will still aim to assist job seekers and employers in the hotel sector with vacancies to meet in a more informal setting. It still plans to offer both the jobseekers and the employers the opportunity to meet a large range of potential employers and employees on the same day which has proven to be a key factor in the event’s success.

SKDP Enterprise Officer Joanne Griffin, who organises the event, said that hotels she has spoken to are optimistic with regard to the 2021 tourist season and many are already well advanced in planning for the new season.

“The last recruitment event took place just before the significant disruption to the sector due to COVID, and while it was a tremendous success from the point of view of both the hotels and those seeking employment, circumstances curtailed the actual number of positions filled,” Joanne said. “Many hotels are now however actively recruiting to fill a broad range of positions for the 2021 season. It is likely that a significant number of roles will be available as some people who previously worked in the sector many have taken up employment in other sectors of the economy due to the COVID crisis.”

The event will again target jobseekers both with experience in the hotel sector but also those who are seeking a change in career. Applications from jobseekers who wish to take part in the event will open early in 2021.

A significant number of the hotels in Killarney have already committed to taking part and any other hotels in the greater Killarney area who are interested in the 2021 event are invited to register their interest now.

“If they are interested they can simply contact me by email at jgriffin@skdp.net or 087 6152660 so that we can get them involved.”