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5 minute read

Singapore’s Hospitality & Tourism Sector: In-Demand Skills to Gun for a Successful Mid-Career Switch

Want to make a mid-career switch to the hospitality and tourism sector? Uncover the in-demand skills that will give you the edge to seize job opportunities.

Are you considering a mid-career switch into the vibrant hospitality and tourism sector? Good news: The sector is currently on the rise, and there are plenty of job opportunities for you to explore. However, job abundance doesn’t necessarily mean landing a job in the sector is a sure thing. 

As the saying goes, failure to plan is planning to fail. The hospitality and tourism sector is transforming and is influenced by digitalisation and emerging trends. So, if you’re keen to up your chances of snagging a role and have a flourishing career in this rising sector, it’s essential to equip yourself with the right skills. 

What are the in-demand skills for the hospitality and industry sector now?

The hospitality and tourism sector is a huge sector, and it can be challenging to identify the specific skills to upskill for. The NTUC LearningHub’s Industry Insights Report 2024 provides a comprehensive analysis of hiring trends, training preferences, and in-demand skills based on a survey of 167 business leaders in the tourism sector. 

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Key challenges faced by the sector

Before delving into the sought-after skills of the sector, it’s imperative to grasp its challenges. While Singapore’s tourism sector holds promise for growth, it also encounters significant hurdles. 

Familiarising yourself with these challenges provides insight into how you can strategically position yourself to meet the sector’s talent requirements and advance your career effectively. Here are the top three challenges identified by the business leaders surveyed in the sector:

Top emerging trends of the hospitality and tourism sector

The report also explores the sentiments towards emerging trends within the tourism sector. These trends shape the kind of talent that companies in the sector are hiring for. Here are the top four emerging trends identified by the business leaders surveyed in the sector:

In-demand job roles in the hospitality and tourism sector

While the challenges and emerging trends may seem discouraging at a glance, the majority of tourism leaders (94%) believe these trends will generate more job opportunities in the industry. Consequently, 77% are eager to hire new talent to address these emerging needs. The most sought-after positions include:

What are the key skills employers in the tourism sector are looking for?

A notable 79% of leaders express interest in training their employees in digital and technological skills, considering the widespread adoption of technologies in business operations. Below are the key areas of upskilling that they are keen to send their employees for:

Subsequent training areas encompass:

  • Service engagement (77%)
  • Sustainability (41%)
  • Holistic wellness travel and regenerative tourism (26%)

Regarding service excellence, 70% of leaders strongly advocate for upskilling to enhance the service experience among tourism professionals. Surprisingly, only 3% of leaders perceive the quality of service in Singapore’s tourism sector as excellent. Conversely, over half of tourism leaders (52%) rate it as average or below.

Lastly, 75% of tourism leaders are committed to integrating sustainability into their business offerings and operations. This commitment underscores a growing awareness and acknowledgement within the industry of the importance of adopting environmentally responsible practices and meeting the expectations of environmentally conscious consumers.

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If you’re keen to work in a role that specialises in sustainability, below are the measures of focus for companies in the sector: 

Need support in making a mid-career switch?

If you’re thinking of upskilling yourself to enhance your career or, make a mid-career switch but unsure of where to start, fret not. 

For mid-career individuals who desire to undergo skills conversion and move into new occupations or sectors that have good prospects and opportunities for progression. WSG offers Career Conversion Programmes to support mid-career individuals in career conversion. 

Jobseekers or mid-career switchers who are keen on joining the hospitality and tourism sector can get support and On-the-Job Training by signing up for the following Career Conversion Programme for Tourism Professionals by Workforce Singapore:

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