Recruitment & Skills

Tackling recruitment challenges and inspiring careers in tourism

Recruitment & Skills

Cumbria Tourism’s business performance survey highlights the very real issue our members continue to face not only sourcing staff with the right skills, but also retaining them and keeping young people within the county.

With the impact of Brexit, the pandemic and the county’s ageing population, many tourism operators are recruiting from a shrinking pool of applicants. The Cumbria Tourism team is working on a number of initiatives to address misconceptions about working in our industry and encourage more people to take up roles in tourism and hospitality.

Gill Haigh and Rachel Tyson from Cumbria Tourism at the Barrow Jobs Fair

We are targeting adults by working alongside partners such as Inspira and The Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) to promote tailored training programmes for people actively seeking jobs. This includes working with Cumbria LEP to match employers with Ukrainian refugees.

Cumbria Tourism Recruitment - Working with Cumbrian Schools to promote local tourism jobs

We are working with Cumbrian schools, to establish a strong presence for our industry and influence perceptions from primary school age onwards. Interactive sessions (e.g mock interviews) are bringing businesses into direct contact with potential employees of the future and opening young people’s eyes to the career opportunities available.

Career Fairs organised by Cumbria Tourism

We are working with colleges and universities, by attending and helping to coordinate regular jobs fairs and careers events across the county. In partnership with Cumbria Tourism members, our team is also working with universities across the North of England and the Midlands to highlight degree apprenticeships and promote the Lake District, Cumbria, as a location for academic field trips.

Our ‘Tourism Talent Hub’ is helping shape future tourism skills and bringing together a wide range of content showcasing potential career paths into tourism and hospitality. Meanwhile, development of our ‘live, work, study’ content is ongoing.

Influencing regional and national policy

It is fundamental for tourism’s voice to be heard by key decision-makers. We are representing the industry on a number of county-wide strategic groups, working cross sector to encourage partnership working and address issues including staff housing and transport.

Cumbria Tourism is currently working with Cumbria Chamber of Commerce to represent the visitor economy as part of the roll out of the county’s Local Skills Improvement Plan. We are also lobbying at a government level on national policy issues, such as the potential extension of the Youth Mobility Scheme to other countries to help bring more new talent into the local workforce.

Our partners at Napthens Solicitors have created a presentation on sponsoring non-UK workers to complement the government guidelines on UK visa sponsorship for employers.

How member businesses can get involved

Jobs Lake District - Cumbria Tourism

Upload your job vacancies for free to advertise on our jobs hub on

  •  Live listings are shared with job centres, those helping refugees seek work and the general public.
  • CT promote these roles at jobs and careers fairs.
  • All new roles are promoted on the @lakedistrictjobs Facebook page
  • We are regularly being asked for jobs with ‘live in’ accommodation, plus ‘part time’ and ‘seasonal’ roles, so always tag these options when uploading your vacancies.
  • You can also advertise apprenticeship vacancies for free through UCAS.

Put your staff forward as employee case studies (and increase your own brand recognition in the process!) We are on the lookout for individuals who are passionate about their job in tourism and hospitality, to explain what their role involves, the opportunities they’ve received and positive stories of progression.

Share recruitment focused images that we can share directly with prospective employees at future careers events AND use for our high-profile marketing campaigns. We need a diverse range of recruitment images showcasing the full variety of roles across our industry.

Put your business forward to support careers activity in schools, colleges and universities. Perhaps you’d like to take part in a future event, or are able to offer a work experience placement to students? We’d love to hear from members who are willing to represent both their businesses – and the wider visitor economy – as we work together to reshape young people’s perceptions about working in tourism and hospitality.

Would you like an introduction to your local college or university? We can make direct introductions to explore apprenticeship or wider training opportunities for your business and staff. Degree apprenticeships and apprenticeships allow universities/colleges to create relationships with employers, offering your staff balanced work and study opportunities.

Chartered Manager (Visitor Economy) – Degree Apprenticeship

If you’re looking for ways of retaining valued members of your team, it’s worth looking into the Chartered Manager Degree Apprenticeship.

This innovative three-year programme has a vastly reduced fee for SMEs (and otherwise paid for by levy contributions for larger companies) enables members of your team to study for a degree, whilst working and gaining valuable experience and not racking up the usual debts. In fact, there is no cost to the student.

This is an excellent way of training managers within your company and at the same time getting the benefit of up-to-date learning.  For more information contact Angela Anthonisz on:

Hear from Dan Stearne, Cumbria Tourism’s Sales & Marketing assistant who is currently studying a Chartered Management Degree Apprenticeship at the University of Cumbria.

Get In Touch

To find out more about the work Cumbria Tourism is doing around recruitment and skills, and how your business can get involved, contact: Rachel Tyson or Molly Hill