As all Tasmanian tourism and hospitality businesses are well aware, our industry is often affected by a shortage of skilled workers. At the moment, many Tasmanian hotels, pubs, clubs and restaurants can’t find enough skilled professional chefs who want to live and work here permanently. Divergence, a newly-established Tasmanian recruitment company, is now working with the Tasmanian Hospitality Association to find a solution.

The situation in Tasmania is an extension of the chef shortage on mainland Australia, where it has been estimated that as many as 38,000 workers are needed in our nation’s hotels, pubs, clubs, bistros and restaurants. The figure comes from a November 2015 report by Deloitte Access Economics, which projected that on current trends, a staggering 123,000 additional hospitality workers will be required around the country by 2020. The full report can be found at www.medianet.com.au/releases/55059/.

THA CEO Steve Old says that to address the critical chef shortage in Tasmania, the association has recently appointed Divergence as its preferred migration agent.

“The partnership is already showing positive results, with a number of interstate chefs finding placements in Tasmania as a result of their recruitment by Divergence via the Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme,” Mr Old says.

The RSMS is an Australian Government initiative that aims to assist regional areas of the country, including Tasmania, to attract skilled workers. The scheme offers a permanent residence visa for people who want to work in regional Australia and have been nominated for a placement by an approved employer.

“Many of the chefs we need will be seeking permanent residence in Australia through the RSMS,” Mr Old says. “To encourage professional chefs to move permanently to Tasmania, it’s important to make the process as smooth as possible for both the candidates and local employers.”

Divergence director Adrian Sampson says that his company provides a seamless, end-to-end migration service that is simple, timely and cost-effective for all involved.

“There are costs involved with the RSMS service, and these have generally been borne by the sponsoring employers,” Mr Sampson says. “But the key innovation that sets our service apart from the conventional recruitment model is that Divergence requires the candidates to make a personal financial commitment to their relocation, assisting the employers to fund the costs of migration services and other related expenses.” he says.

Steve Old agrees that this is a significant benefit for THA members, who no longer have to carry the whole burden of recruitment costs. And because the chefs have some ‘skin in the game’, they have a strong incentive to commit to their new positions and become key professionals for their new employers.

If you’re an employer in the tourism and hospitality sector who needs more skilled staff – or if you’re a chef who is keen to practise your professional skills as a permanent resident here in Tasmania – Divergence and the THA can help.

Get in contact – Email connect@divergence.com.au or call 03  6108 9150.