New projects recruiting from region's redundant
The recruitment of around 2000 staff for Dubai’s four upcoming Seven Tides-owned Mövenpick properties will “capitalise off the local market”, making the most of recent hospitality industry redundancies.
Dara Pinke, director of human resources across Mövenpick Hotel Deira, Oceana Hotel and Spa, The Royal Amwaj Resort and Spa and Ibn Battuta Gate Hotel and Spa commented: “We definitely want to capitalise off the local market here in Dubai.
“With everybody else doing redundancies, we had some serious opportunities to look at those people as a potential fit for our project.
“Lots of people are keen on taking vacation or finishing their notice period with their employers before joining the team, so we have really looked at opportunities in the Dubai market,” she explained.
However Pinke said her team was “still exploring” to what extent the number of locally-available candidates would reduce the need for international recruitment.
“Although everybody was talking about redundancies three or four months ago, when you look at occupancies in the market we’re seeing a rise, especially the beach hotels; and of course high occupancies require a full team,” she pointed out.
However Pinke admitted that effects of the recent market downturn meant job candidates had become more cautious.
“I do think anyone who’s looking at making a move into a new role is now seriously asking questions of their potential employer about security of the role, and how they might handle redundancies,” she said.
“A lot of it can be addressed through communication and how you handle someone through the recruitment process.
“The reassurance comes from seeing how strategic we are being in our recruitment, then managing arrival dates with people — and after that it basically comes down to communication.”
Pinke added that all positions had also been posted internally, within the company.
“Beyond that, we’ve also gone back and refreshed our relationships with several agencies we have worked with over the years across various projects,” she revealed.
“You really need to have great relationships with your agents in foreign countries, so they understand what you’re looking for when you get there.”
Commenting on the markets Mövenpick would be targeting on the international leg of its recruitment drive, Pinke noted that India had “come back to the table now”.
“I think a couple of years ago it had fallen off because the economy was rising so much; but now Dubai has once again become an attractive destination, so we’ve looked through there.
“We do need to do a serious tour through Asia and Royal Amwaj will reflect that amount of hiring — but its basically international recruitment as usual,” she said.
“[The drive] will cover 15 to 22 countries, depending on how we do with local recruitment.”
According to Mövenpick Hotels and Resorts general manager and regional manager Dubai Thomas Tapken, the handover of the first Seven Tides-owned properties — Deira and Ibn Battuta — should take place at the beginning of 2010.
“That means two months snagging and then we are flying,” he said, adding that staff would be in the hotels within the first quarter.