14 June 2022, Colombo: Cinnamon Hotels & Resorts has been playing a key role in driving value in the hospitality industry in innovative ways. In their latest initiative, Cinnamon Hotels & Resorts has entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Vocational Training Authority (VTA) in an industry-first partnership to uplift human capital. Some of the key objectives of this partnership will encompass recognition of prior learning of existing Cinnamon Hotels & Resorts employees; providing opportunity for the youth of the country to work with a reputed establishment in the hospitality industry; and increasing the female percentage in traditional and non-traditional roles within Cinnamon Hotels and Resorts. The agreement with VTA provides formal recognition for Cinnamon employees, which will enhance their motivation and enable them to continuously grow within the organization whilst attracting more young talent to the sector. VTA meets the vocational training needs of Sri Lankans by providing learning opportunities through excellent pre-employment training in various fields at its many training facilities across the country.
One of Cinnamon Hotels & Resorts’ key competitive advantages over the rest of the industry has always been enhancing the knowledge and competency of its people. The partnership with VTA reflects its commitment to developing youth, promoting internal talent development, and increasing the female population in the workforce in traditional and non-traditional roles. Cinnamon has pledged to increase females in its workforce to 25% by 2024/25 while providing over 250 trainee opportunities within 2023. The partnership also aims to disrupt stereotypes of females working only in certain roles. With the appropriate training from VTA, females can work in non-traditional roles such as hotel maintenance, pool attendance and kitchen services.
Commenting on the novel initiative, Cinnamon Hotels & Resorts’ Chief Executive Officer, Mikael Svensson said, “Establishing a partnership with Vocational Training Authority of Sri Lanka being the premier vocational training provider of the country marks a significant milestone in our journey towards excellence at Cinnamon Hotels & Resorts. We believe as leaders in the industry it is our responsibility to remain positive in a difficult time and continue to move forward in all areas possible, especially in developing the talent of the country and attracting youth to join the hotel industry. VTA with its country-wide network of training centres will be able to develop the talent pipeline we require for our growth, and we can share our industry expertise and best-in-class practices to uplift the standards of VTA facilities and curriculum. With the commitment of Cinnamon Hotels & Resorts to increase females in the workplace, we intend to provide training and employment for more females that get trained in VTA centres, especially in non-traditional roles such as plumbing, electrical and general maintenance. We believe this mutually benefiting relationship will enable both organizations to achieve its vision and set a benchmark for others in the industry to follow.”
The future of the hospitality industry and, indeed, the economy depends on the quality of its human capital and this partnership aims to elevate the skills and knowledge of the youth. Cinnamon Hotels & Resorts being a hospitality trendsetter intends to remain at the forefront of improving and upskilling the industry where possible and this partnership with VTA is one such shining example.