5 March 2013
A new plan to help attract more people to work in Scotland's
tourism sector and develop further skills has been launched by
Tourism Minister Fergus Ewing.
With 2014, when Scotland will host the Commonwealth Games and
the Ryder Cup, fast approaching getting new people into the sector
and developing good leaders are industry priorities. At the
signature conference for Scottish Tourism Week the Minister
launched a new Skills Investment Plan which supports the National
Tourism Strategy (Tourism 2020, The Future of Our Industry, In Our
The plan has been developed on behalf of the Scottish Government
by Skills Development Scotland, working with industry partners
Scottish Tourism Alliance and the Tourism Skills Group.
Consultations with tourism employers, stakeholders and partners
have identified four strategic skills priorities:
Launching the Skills Investment Plan for Scotland's Tourism
Sector, Mr Ewing said: "As we prepare the nation to welcome the
world to Scotland in 2014, ensuring employers can access the
training they need is more important than ever. Strong leadership
and management from the tourism sector are vital to build on the
success of campaigns like Brave and the current Year of Natural
"Tourism is one of the leading growth sectors of the Scottish
economy, currently employing around 185,900 people across more than
13,000 businesses. With record investment, the sector has set
ambitious growth targets and aims to increase annual visitor spend
of between £5.5 billion and £6.5 billion by 2020, growth in the
region of £1 billion.
"The Skills Investment Plan provides a cornerstone for enhancing
skills within the sector and it is a wonderful example of
successful public and private sector collaboration, with all
partners working together"
Chris Brodie, Key Industries Manager at Skills Development
Scotland said: "Each and every time you visit a Scottish tourism
attraction, be it a hotel, café, museum, festival or event, you
should feel inspired by the high-quality authentic experience and
excellent service you receive.
"Delivering the Skills Investment Plan depends on the sector
working together and making a commitment to develop skilled and
passionate people. We need to take advantage of the major tourism
opportunities we have in 2014 and use the Skills Investment Plan as
a conduit to raise standards even further in the future."
Marc Crothall, Chief Executive of the Scottish Tourism Alliance
said: "The tourism industry through the Skills Investment Plan is
determined to make a difference in terms of the consistency of the
service delivered in the sector. It is all about delivery of
excellent service through training, focusing on understanding the
"Scotland's tourism industry is broad and varied and includes
businesses in hotels and accommodation, bars and restaurants, tour
operators, museums, visitor attractions and other sports and
recreation activities. The industry provides wonderful
opportunities and I look forward to the Skills Investment Plan
delivering on these objectives."
Ian Whitaker, Chair of the Scottish Tourism Skills Group and
Chief Executive of CairnGorm Mountain Ltd said: "Over the years the
number of opportunities for young people within the tourism sector
has grown enormously and we are keen to ensure that future
generations of young people are equipped with the skills required
to grow the sector and build on our international reputation as a
leading tourism destination. Developing these training
opportunities will help to ensure that tourism is a stronger career
opportunity for young people.
"Given the importance of the strategic messages within the
National Tourism Strategy, it is key that this is backed-up by a
clear focus on the skills and training required to take the sector
to the next level as we move towards 2020."
You can find out more about the Skills Investment Plan for the
Tourism Sector, and download a copy of it, on the
Our Skillsforce website.