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13.11.19 | ICHM News

Skills Match

With only 2% of its 2019 graduates looking for work, ICHM can confidently lay claim to providing work-ready graduates that the hotel industry wants.

Both through surveys and individual inquiries, ICHM is able to track its graduates, and only 2 of the students who completed their course in December 2018 and June 2019 are currently looking for work (See details at end.)

In 2019, the survey showed that 95% of graduates had their first job in hotels in Australia: the majority in Adelaide and other mainland capitals, and also in Alice Springs and the Gold Coast.

Properties in which these new graduates can be found include Accor, IHG, Crown, Hyatt, Marriott, Stamford, TFE and Majestic.

These results are in stark contrast to the 2019 BDO South Australian State Business Survey, the sixth annual report BDO has produced about the state.

In the 2019 report, South Australia’s small-to-medium sized businesses say they are struggling to find and retain suitable employees and accuse the state’s major universities of failing to prepare graduates for the workforce.

ICHM Chief Executive Gerald Lipman says that building on the 125-year reputation of industry partner the Swiss Hotel Association and its own 27-year history, ICHM continues to deliver industry focused bachelor and, more recently, masters degrees.

‘For every six months of on-campus study, ICHM students spend six months in industry on a placement program coordinated by our own department of Industry and Career Development managers. 

‘Students are marked on their performance in industry, much the same as they are for their academic assignments.

‘Given that 86% of graduates in 2019 got their positions either through ICHM’s Industry and Career Development department, or from an ICHM placement, this is a highly proven employment strategy’, says Lipman. 

According to Lipman, in contrast to the ‘markedly subdued air’ reported by BDO, the market for young hoteliers has never been brighter. 

‘There are currently 22 hotels on the drawing board in Adelaide, representing 4000 rooms. Some are already approaching completion - Crowne Plaza, Sofitel and Langham, with ICHM graduate Bodelle Francis already named General Manager of the Adelaide Oval Hotel.  Other properties will be completed in 2020, 2021 and 2022.

‘This means 22 general managers, 100 directors, and maybe 1000 positions overall in these hotels for graduates and placements’, says Lipman.

(Note that ICHM had 85 graduates in September 2019 ceremony, and 68 are working. Six are studying, five of them at ICHM. One is undertaking military service. Two will look for work in 2020. Two are currently looking for work, and six have not replied to our inquiries.)

BDO South Australia is the largest locally owned accounting and advisory firm in South Australia. Its team of more than 160 partners and staff are located in offices in the Adelaide CBD and McLaren Vale, and backed up by a global network.