Momentum is gathering behind Labour’s ‘Living Wage’ proposals, which are being met with trepidation by the hospitality industry.
In 2011, around 40 per cent of part-time workers in the hospitality sector earned less than £7.19 per hour, but with the Living Wage standing at £8.55 per hour in London, its promised implementation under a Labour government and Ed Miliband’s leadership is leaving hoteliers and restaurateurs uneasy.
The Living Wage for a city or region is based on an assessment of the real costs of living in that area, rather than the floor tariffs established by the National Minimum Wage.
“The increase could mean employment costs rising to 33 to 35 per cent of a business’s cost base. This stood at just 21 per cent 10 years ago and with rising pressure to compete with the promotional prices larger chains offer, it could have a major impact on many independent hotels, pubs and restaurants,” said accountant Stuart Crook, who hosts an Oxfordshire roundtable event for members of the hospitality sector.
Rather than passing on such a cost to the private sector, guests at the roundtable argued that councils should instead focus their attention on working with businesses, and creating the right environment for businesses to thrive through joint initiatives.
Further information on all the topics discussed as Wellers Hospitality Roundtable can be found at the Wellers Accountants website.