Hotel BrandsRestaurants & Chefs

Valor Hospitality debuts chef academy amid skills shortage

The scheme will provide on the job training and one-to-one tutoring, with the opportunity to reach head chef level within five years.

Valor Hospitality, the international hotel management company, has launched a new Chef Development Academy, set to launch in August 2022, in a bid to encourage more people to embark on a culinary career, following a national skills shortage in the sector. 

In partnership with Umbrella Training, an expert apprenticeship and training provider for the hospitality industry, the scheme will provide on the job training, starting at apprentice level two, with the opportunity to reach head chef level within five years. 

The academy will include 12 hotels from Valor’s UK portfolio, working with brands such as DoubleTree by Hilton, Holiday Inn and Crowne Plaza, and the recruitment process will begin mid-May.

While undergoing training, the trainees will be paid an annual salary of £20,000p.a. and receive a full starter kit, including chef whites, shoes and their own knife set. 

Alongside on-the-job training and one-to-one tutoring, Valor’s apprentice team will also undertake a number of off-site, immersive experiences at locations such as Billingsgate Market and Taste of London, as part of its newly designed Culinary Club.   

Valor will also enable its Academy group to compete for quarterly-bonuses linked to those who have demonstrated the “greatest development” in skills and expertise each quarter. The company is also offering a guaranteed pay increase to a minimum of £22,500 upon completion of the initial 12-month Academy. 

Valor said the hospitality industry’s labour pool has been reduced by approximately one million workers, due to the impact of Covid-19 and Brexit. 

Moira Laird, global HR director at Valor Hospitality, said: “Over the past years, the sector has lost so many skilled workers from hospitality, and this has led to a highly competitive market. 

“Despite the number of jobs in hospitality increasing, the roles being filled are as little as one in ten, due in part to the lack of specialist skills that the candidates have and a responsibility on us all as employers to make hospitality businesses a great place to work and engaging for all our team.”

Valor manages 85 hotels across the global, with its UK portfolio more than doubling in the past 12 months, taking it to 37 properties.   

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