— image credit: LAUREN COLLINS PHOTO
The Parksville Qualicum Beach Tourism Association is hoping to incorporate more baby boomers into the local tourism workforce.
On March 31, the association held a workshop on hiring and retaining baby boomers for tourism business employers.
The tourism association’s executive director Blain Sepos said, although the turnout was less than what they’d hoped for, it won’t stop them from offering the workshop again.
Sepos added that employers who did attend got “some great insight into how to market and tailor positions to older workers.”
Cheryl Dill said the workshop talked to employers about considering baby boomers in jobs where an older worker may not always be considered.
“As a local resource in the community, a lot of employers are not aware that the Career Centre can help employers learn to how to seek out a particular demographic of employee, or a particular type of employee,” said Dill, executive director of the Parksville Career Centre. Dill said at the workshop there was a man who used to work in the music industry, and now he’s working in the culinary industry during his retirement.
“He’s loving it. He’s only getting a certain number of hours a week. He only wanted to work part time, but he wanted to do something completely different and he’s transferring his skills.”
Dill said he knows how to work with a team, and he’s able to be creative in the kitchen “just like he has been in his (previous) career.”
Debbie Yule said there were a few case studies presented by Tigh-Na-Mara Seaside Spa Resort and Mount Washinton Alpine Resort at the workshop.
Yule is the vice-president for labour market strategy at go2HR, the human resource association for the B.C.’s hospitality and tourism sector.
She said go2HR is advocating for employers to look at baby boomers instead of the traditional 15 to 24-year-olds who represent 30 per cent of the workforce.
“There’s a high proportion of baby boomers who have no intention of stopping working, but they don’t want that career job and all that stress,” Yule said. “They may have a pension, they may want to do something fun, be engaged, use the skill sets that they have.”