Over half said that they could not be certain of their job security while opportunities to progress were less of a concern for this sector, with just 17% citing this as a factor in their decision to reconsider careers.
e-recruitment platform Jobs.ie analysed the data collected from 1,671 respondents across retail and hospitality to a survey posted on the Jobs.ie website earlier this month.
The results, released today, demonstrate the deep concern of workers in the retail and hospitality industries, the two sectors most impacted by the current and previous Covid-19 restrictions.
In all almost 60% of workers in retail and hospitality expressed concern about job security in the weeks and months ahead.
Concern for the future
For workers in both sectors a shared concern arises around the future of the industry.
When asked if the Covid-19 pandemic had made them reconsider a future career in the industry all 100% of retail and hospitality workers surveyed said “yes”.
In retail, almost four in 10 workers said that they couldn’t be certain of future job security and almost three in 10 don’t think that there will be enough opportunities to progress their career in the sector.
Working through the pandemic
68% of retail workers and 61% of hospitality workers surveyed said that they’ve been able to return to work since Covid-19 restrictions began in March as changes to guidelines during the Summer made it possible for some businesses in these industries to continue trading.
Of those who’ve been able to return to work almost nine in 10 in hospitality and retail say that their employer has taken all reasonable steps to protect their health and safety at work.
Despite this, almost two in 10 retail workers and nearly one in 10 hospitality workers say they’re unable to return to work due to concerns for their personal health or the health of a family member and the potential of possible exposure to Covid-19.
In some cases, the changing restrictions have prevented employers from offering sufficient hours for workers to sustain a living, with 13% in retail and 20% in hospitality unable to return to full-time work for this reason.
Changing work patterns
Of those who have returned to work, 34% in hospitality and 22% in retail have been asked to work shorter hours (less than 9-hour days) than they typically would to facilitate these new changes. A smaller percentage (14% in retail and 12% in hospitality) have been asked to work longer hours (longer than 9-hour days) than they would have normally worked before the pandemic. The majority of workers in retail (64%) and hospitality (55%) say they’re happy to facilitate this change.
“For workers in these sectors, the concern around the future is clearly evident and only exacerbated by the uncertainty surrounding the direction of the pandemic and its impact on the reopening of hotels, cafés, restaurants and pubs and bricks and mortar retail,” commented Jobs.ie General Manager Christopher Paye, “Today’s data suggests that there’s a high risk of many retail and hospitality workers leaving the industry as the fallout from the Covid-19 pandemic has forced them to reconsider their choice of career. This is extremely worrying and could spell a potential future skills shortage if not addressed.
“As we approach the Christmas period, continued restrictions and reduced capacities will further intensify these concerns, hampering what’s typically the busiest season for both sectors. However, we must remember that retail and hospitality will not be closed forever.
“Collectively, both of these sectors support almost 330,000 jobs, accounting for approximately 16% of total employment. To safeguard this level of employment and maintain viability within the sector, Government and industry must continue to work together ensure that current supports remain in place – but more importantly, that they are revised and updated in line with any further Covid-19 developments.”