Bajan Workers Recruited By Canadian Hoteliers

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Some of the persons hoping to be recruited to work in the hotel sector overseas.

Barbadians are coming out in their numbers with the hope of being recruited to work in the hospitality industry in Canada, and Human Resources Manager of Blue Mountain Resort from Ontario, Janet Hammond, said her company was eager to hire people from this island.

Ms. Hammond, along with her colleague, Sacha Matanowitsch – a Human Relations advisor, was on the island earlier this week to conduct a recruitment drive for 25 room attendants.?? She disclosed that the successful applicants would be required to start work at the 850-room resort in December this year.

The recruitment drive is a part of this country’s Overseas Employment Programme, which is facilitated and managed by the National Employment Bureau (NEB) of the Ministry of Labour.?? Under this programme, the NEB seeks external job opportunities for Barbadian nationals as well as administers a number of temporary overseas employment programmes mainly in Canada.

Noting that the recruitment drive took place over a period of three days, Ms. Hammond disclosed that her team interviewed close to 80 persons.

Saying that she was "thrilled with the response", the Human Resources Manager remarked: "We are impressed with the quality of the applicants that we have met and interviewed. In fact, we may have to fight it out to decide who we are going to take, it seems a shame we can’t take everyone".

??She added she was really proud that persons who worked at the Blue Mountain Resort some four years ago were among the current applicants.???? "It shows they had fond memories but it also makes our job in selecting the final 25 a lot harder," she said.

Affirming that management at the hotel was impressed with Barbadian workers, Ms Hammond stressed: "… Barbadians bring strength to our workforce."

Pointing out that in 2006 when a decision was made for Blue Mountain Resorts to hire overseas workers, her company chose to follow the model of Taboo Resort from Muskoka, Ontario, Canada.??

"Taboo Resort had great things to say about Bajan workers and its successful [overseas employment] programme.?? At that time we also worked with a third party company to hire some people from Jamaica. ??The Jamaicans were also good but we just love the Bajan attitude and spirit…," the Human Resources Manager declared.

She continued: "We love the Bajan personalities… They whistle in the hallways and are so happy to be there… [and are] so adventurous and excited about everything that we just fell in love with Bajan culture and the people."

Admitting that her company also hires numerous other persons from around the world – as far afield as the Philippines, Costa Rica, Brazil and all over Asia; Ms. Hammond reasoned that Blue Mountain Resort offers a great experience to all its workers.

"It is a difficult job being a room attendant …The Resort receives 750,000 visitors during the four months of the winter season and in total, 1.5 million annually… but we pay well for that position, which is something I think attracts a lot of people from Barbados… People also enjoy the perks," she affirmed.

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Keisha Mitchell (right) said she would love to experience working overseas. ??Here she is being interviewed by Human Resource Manager of the Blue Mountain Resort, Janet Hammond, HR??Adviser, Sacha Matanowitsch and??Liaison??Officer of the NEB, Shirley Hall-Mayers. (A. Miller/BGIIS)

Outlining that employees are encouraged to get involved in skiing, snowboarding and other activities, the Human Resources Manager stated that Blue Mountain Resort offered its employees a free lift-pass for the winter sports season, rental equipment and lessons.

She concluded that the company has developed an international employment programme which allows all the workers to appreciate different cultures, languages and experiences, since the Resort hires people from every corner of the world.

Acting Senior Labour Officer of the NEB, Valerie Quintyne, said she was happy that Barbados was chosen again.?? "It was a happy surprise when I received the call from Blue Mountain Resort to have vacant posts filled within such a short time.?? We are pleased because this affords the NEB the opportunity to realise its mandate, which is to find work for Barbadians at home and abroad," Ms. Quintyne stated.

Chief Liaison Officer for the Overseas Employment Programme in Canada, James Inniss, who was present at the recruitment drive, he also expressed his satisfaction with the process but emphasised the need for the successful applicants to perform well.

"When you are chosen to work in the Overseas Employment Programme, the worker needs to give the best in service and attitude. This opens the door for others to also get work.?? So, I would tell the applicants to give an excellent performance and make way for yourself and other Bajans to come after you," he stressed.

shamkoe.pile@barbados.gov.bb

Author: Shamkoe Pil??
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