According to Rational International Middle East, qualified chefs are in more demand than ever. At the same time, fewer and fewer young people are completing training in hospitality. Greater efforts in training, improved working conditions and contemporary kitchen technology could help turn a page.
In the last few months, the German Hotel and Restaurant Association (DEHOGA) once again published quarterly facts and figures for the hospitality industry – with alarming figures regarding the training situation in the industry: in 2018, over 6% fewer contracts for chef training were signed compared to the previous year.
The problem isn’t specific to any country. In the United Kingdom, for example, it’s already estimated that by 2022, almost three times as many trainee chefs as there are today will be needed to cover the requirement for an estimated 11,000.
Many trainees aren’t completing their studies or quit once they experience the reality of the job, Rational adds. The early 90s generation in specific doesn’t want to work unpleasant working hours. It is, therefore, time to get into the minds of young employees to understand their needs and make jobs more attractive. Young talent can be attracted if they feel they’re getting guidance, support and recognition from the very first day of work.
Technology can help keep young chefs loyal to the business
Having grown up in the environment of internet and mobile communication, a contemporary working environment is a “must” for the so-called digital natives. This is why the manufacturers of kitchen technology are increasingly working on the needs of the technophile generation.
For example, with both its cooking appliances the SelfCookingCenter and VarioCookingCenter and the networking solution ConnectedCooking, Rational offers intelligent equipment with which prospective chefs like to work. It also offers the possibility of starting and monitoring the cooking process in the combi-steamer with the smartphone with remote access wherever they are.
“Businesses should also see the investment in new technologies as an opportunity for savings and optimisations,” says Simon Parke-Davis managing director at RATIONAL Kitchen & Catering Equipment Trading FZCO.
He adds: “We also offer the option for overnight cooking, a function that adds more capacity to the actual working day, to try new things or to develop in another area.”
“Development in particular is a good keyword: to keep young talent in the profession, taking part in a cooking competition can also help. Because gaining experience, learning to manage themselves and at the same time networking with relevant colleagues in the industry not only promotes motivation, but also the sense of recognition in the profession.”