At Tuesday's conference and recruitment day. | Pere Bota


At a conference and recruitment day at the Balearics School of Hospitality in Palma on Tuesday, hotel groups on the islands considered means of avoiding problems with shortages of qualified personnel that they experienced last summer. One way of doing this will be to return to what was once commonplace - rooms in hotels to be reserved for employees.

The problems with staff in 2022 extended to seasonal workers coming from the mainland who were deterred by the high cost to rent. Other solutions to this are for hotels to themselves rent properties for staff (which has been a policy for many hotels in any event) or for hotels to purchase apartments and even build new ones - Hipotels in Cala Millor are an example of doing just this.

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The president of the Mallorca Hoteliers Federation, Maria Frontera, rightly recognised that the problems were not just confined to the hotel sector last summer. For the public sector, it is in fact an old problem. In summers prior to the pandemic, difficulties with attracting the likes of security forces, court officials and health professionals were regularly highlighted. The cost of living in the Balearics was not a new issue in 2022; anything but.

Frontera said that a lack of qualified personnel, in all productive sectors and in the public administration, "is a very important challenge and is linked to the housing problem, which will not be solved in a couple of days". A different solution, she suggested, would be to "provide employment throughout the year and to consign the six-month season to the past".