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Open Access
Article
Publication date: 28 October 2019

Eduardo Vicente Rengel Jara, Jackson Wayne Babb and Timothy Marshall Flohr

Project management is an essential skill in the hospitality organization that is only becoming more important (Tereso et al., 2019). Bridging the gap between academia and…

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Abstract

Purpose

Project management is an essential skill in the hospitality organization that is only becoming more important (Tereso et al., 2019). Bridging the gap between academia and industry is achievable by experiential learning or providing students with curriculum that gives them hands-on access to real-world industry research projects that attempt to solve real-world industry issues (Steed and Schwer, 2003). The purpose of this paper is to understand the scope of project management curriculum in universities’ hospitality programs, to understand the scope of project management skill requirements in hospitality firms and to narrow the disconnect between project management in academia and in hospitality firms.

Design/methodology/approach

The study used a mixed method approach. On the side of academia, a quantitative collection method was used to gage which universities offered a project management course, how many universities offer these courses and how many project management courses each university had. On the side of industry, a survey was administered to industry professionals in senior management positions. It was a quantitative survey designed to gage the importance of having project management as part of university curriculum. The aim was to show what was expected to be a disconnect between the two sides – academia and industry. A total of 57 responses were collected. Out of them 49 were usable. The Human Subjects consisted solely of two populations: individuals who worked in the hospitality industry. This accounted for 12 of the responses; individuals who worked in academia – more specifically in higher education at schools that offer Hospitality Management curriculum. This accounted for 37 of the responses. The subjects were identified and recruited through the professional networking site LinkedIn (for subjects that were industry professionals) and through both LinkedIn and American Hotel Lodging and Educational Institute databases for the subjects in academia. There were no direct potential benefits to the subject. The potential societal benefits of the study were the advancement of knowledge within the disciplines of both Hospitality Management and Project Management. The authors used the University of Memphis’ Qualtrics system and changed settings to anonymize responses so IP addresses would not be collected. The Qualtrics’ default is to collect IP addresses and GPS coordinates of those who responded. By setting the survey to anonymized responses the investigators were not able to collect this identifiable information. This information was included in the confidentiality, methods/procedures and in any other necessary sections/documents noting that the investigators would set Qualtrics to anonymize responses.

Findings

H1 was supported. The findings showed that most colleges and universities did not require project management classes for degree completion. Preliminary research showed that of 68 of the top hospitality programs in the world that were researched, only 7.5 percent required taking project management centric courses in order to graduate (College Choice, 2019; The Best Schools, 2019; Top Universities, 2018). In total, 43.2 percent of respondents answered “yes” when asked if their school offers courses in project management based on this definition of project management: “A project is temporary in that it has a defined beginning and end in time, and therefore the defined scope and resources. And a project is unique in that it is not a routine operation, but a specific set of operations designed to accomplish a singular goal. A project team often includes people who do not usually work together – sometimes from different organizations and across multiple geographies. Project management, then, is the application of knowledge, skills, tools, and techniques to project activities to meet the project requirement” (Project Management Institute) (See Table A1). Of 43.2 percent that answered yes, 64.3 percent said that the courses were required for graduation (See Table AII). Meaning, only 27.8 percent of schools surveyed offered and required completing project management courses for graduation. It should be noted that this number may be lower as bias may have played a factor. It is evident that hospitality programs understand the importance of project management because 85.7 percent of the colleges and universities surveyed are teaching project management concepts in courses that are not project management centric, like Meeting and Event Planning (See Table AIII). H2 was supported. Only 9.1 percent of respondents believed that project management skills are not at all important to line level employees. Most, 54.6 percent, believed that project management skills are important to some extent for line level employees. In total, 9.1 percent believed that project management skills are not at all important for supervisory level employees; 27.3 percent believed they are needed to some extent and 36.4 percent believed they are needed to a moderate extent. As for management level employees, it was found that 63.6 percent believed project management skills were needed to a great extent. For director level employees, 63.6 percent believed project management skills are necessary. Finally, 72.7 percent of respondents believed project management skills are necessary for both VP level employees and executive leadership (See Table AIV). It should be noted that one person did not believe themselves qualified to answer questions regarding project management within their organization. More than half of respondents said that project management skills are used to a great extent within their organization. H3 was not supported. Both hospitality schools and hospitality companies agreed that project management skills have some level of importance in academia and in industry – most believed the skills were very important at both junctions (See Tables AV and AVI). However, in the preliminary research the authors found that 55 percent of the top 111 hospitality companies had project management positions, meaning that there was a potential need for project management courses in colleges and universities (Ranker, 2019). As stated earlier, only 7.5 percent of the top 68 colleges and universities required project management courses to be completed upon graduation. So, the discrepancy lies within the vastly different percentages between project management positions within companies and project management courses within schools.

Research limitations/implications

The data provided strong evidence that supported the idea that project management is not required in hospitality programs upon completion. This opens new avenues to research the reasons behind schools not offering project management courses or making it a requirement for degree completion. On the other hand, project management skills are considered to be needed by hospitality managers. This provides valuable information for future studies that look to close the gap between academia and industry. The results indicated that project management is important for hospitality companies and schools, but the lack of project management education in colleges and universities is evident. The results of this study provided good news to students that aim to work in hospitality companies, since they can improve their project management skills and encourage their programs to stay updated with the industry needs so that they can succeed in their professional lives. Though this was an exploratory study of the project management discipline within the hospitality industry – with a limited sample size – the data clearly justified that there is room for additional data collection and research in this area of study.

Practical implications

The results show that there is a disconnect between project management curriculum in schools and project management skill demand in the hospitality industry. The research should encourage schools to invest appropriate resources into required project management curriculum. The hospitality industry is vast in the types of businesses that fall under it. Project management is one skill set that can be useful across most of the different businesses in the hospitality industry. From a practical standpoint, providing students with a solid background in the project management discipline provides them an advantage in the highly competitive hospitality industry. It accomplishes this by providing the students with in-demand knowledge and competencies that are both universally accepted and highly regarded by hospitality management companies as a skill set that is widely used in the industry.

Social implications

There were limitations to this study. Some pieces may be improved in future research. The Qualtrics survey could have been reduced in number and order of questions for a better interaction and results. The use of the Qualtrics database might be helpful to reach a bigger population. Potential steps could be taken to reduce bias that may play a factor in the responses. For example, some respondents may have claimed that their schools offer project management curriculum when in fact they do not, or they do not know to what extent.

Originality/value

Project management is an essential skill in the hospitality organization that is only becoming more important (Tereso et al., 2019). Bridging the gap between academia and industry is achievable through experiential learning or providing students with curriculum that gives them hands-on access to real-world industry research projects that attempt to solve real-world industry issues (Steed and Schwer, 2003). Most graduate level curriculum at universities was found to hone skills like written and oral communications, problem solving and decision making, organization, time management and cost control (Steed and Schwer, 2003). It has been suggested that universities add project management curriculum and experiential learning to their programs for a more streamlined transition from academia to industry (Steed and Schwer, 2003). Existing research on this subject is a bit dated, so the objectives were: to understand the scope of project management curriculum in universities’ hospitality programs; to understand the scope of project management skill requirements in hospitality firms; to narrow the disconnect between project management in academia and in hospitality firms.

Details

International Hospitality Review, vol. 33 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2516-8142

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 February 2001

Andrew Kevin Jenkins

The aim of this research is to establish students’ perceptions of the international hospitality industry and, specifically, to establish the likelihood of the student…

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Abstract

The aim of this research is to establish students’ perceptions of the international hospitality industry and, specifically, to establish the likelihood of the student seeking employment in the industry after graduating, the region/country where the student intends seeking employment, the functional area/sector which is most attractive to the student and the position which the student expects to hold five and ten years after graduating. The research is based on a questionnaire administered at two universities offering hospitality management degrees, one in the UK, the other in The Netherlands. The main findings are that students have a distinct preference for certain hotel departments, hotel chains and sectors of the industry. Most expect to be general manager/corporate manager ten years after graduating. As the degree progresses, the students’ perception of the industry deteriorates. The paper concludes by examining issues relating to the image of the industry and the development of hospitality curricula.

Details

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, vol. 13 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-6119

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 11 April 2016

Ogechi Adeola

The purpose of this paper is to identify weaknesses in human capital development (HCD) in the hospitality industry in Nigeria and to find implementable solutions.

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to identify weaknesses in human capital development (HCD) in the hospitality industry in Nigeria and to find implementable solutions.

Design/methodology/approach

The author draws on the literature on HCD and the hospitality industry, as well as her experience working with practitioners to enlighten the discussion.

Findings

Deficiencies in HCD in the Nigerian hospitality industry are the result of a lack of sound and forward-thinking educational development, lack of a supportive environment for the meaningful employment of graduates of the educational system and social bias against vocational education, as well as inadequate hospitality skills of employees, insufficient empowerment or support from the government and hospitality industry participants.

Practical Implications

This paper summarises the key issues in HCD in the hospitality industry in Nigeria and the implementable solutions. The roles of the government, society and the hospitality industry are highlighted to demonstrate that HCD in the industry is a collective responsibility.

Originality/value

HCD has increasingly been a prominent goal of research policy in Nigeria and elsewhere but has not yet engendered much discussion in the hospitality literature.

Details

Worldwide Hospitality and Tourism Themes, vol. 8 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1755-4217

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 15 September 2016

Marlena A. Bednarska and Marcin Olszewski

There is an essential link between the success of hospitality organizations and the availability of appropriate labor resources, making employee attraction a critical…

Abstract

There is an essential link between the success of hospitality organizations and the availability of appropriate labor resources, making employee attraction a critical concern for the industry. The purpose of this chapter is to investigate the role of work experience, both inside and outside the hospitality industry, in shaping students’ attitudes toward hospitality careers. The study was conducted on the group of 338 undergraduates and graduates enrolled in tourism and hospitality studies in Poznan, Poland. The findings suggest that work experience displays a stronger relationship with preferred than with perceived job and organization attributes. It is also related to perceptions of hospitality career attractiveness both in the long and in the short run as well as to intentions to apply for a job after graduation. The results underline the importance of providing students with quality work experience by the hospitality industry stakeholders as it can influence future career decisions.

Details

Tourism and Hospitality Management
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78635-714-4

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 20 November 2020

Vicky Teeuwisse and David W. Brannon

Notwithstanding the emergence of hospitality education around the world, the hospitality industry itself has struggled to establish a talent pipeline of young ambitious…

Abstract

Notwithstanding the emergence of hospitality education around the world, the hospitality industry itself has struggled to establish a talent pipeline of young ambitious managers. Typically, only 30% of hospitality students are predicted to develop their careers within the hospitality industry, while the remainder will relocate to other industries such as retail, banking and consulting. Although this manifestation has been globally documented, most studies have simply adopted a quantitative approach in defining this phenomenon; hence, despite its scale being appreciated, less attention has been paid to defining the underlying causes which drive this concern. This study contributes to this issue by interviewing 18 students at three key stages of their practical placements, namely, pre-, during and post their placement, drawing on the ‘Principles of a Sustainable HRM ROC framework’. This chapter concludes with significant findings from which some recommendations have been formulated.

Article
Publication date: 2 June 2022

Lindsey Lee, Sandra Sun-Ah Ponting, Ankita Ghosh and Hyounae (Kelly) Min

This study aims to provide important insights in advancing the hospitality workforce by exploring the dimensions of calling. By identifying significant calling dimensions…

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to provide important insights in advancing the hospitality workforce by exploring the dimensions of calling. By identifying significant calling dimensions among hospitality employees, the study is guided by work as calling theory by also examining the mediating role of employees’ professional identity on intention to leave the industry.

Design/methodology/approach

This study used an exploratory mixed-methods approach. Study 1 included an online qualitative survey to explore the significant dimensions of calling among hospitality employees. Study 2 measured the significance of hospitality calling dimensions on intention to leave the industry, mediated by professional identity.

Findings

Study 1 identified transcendent summons, passion and purposeful life as significant dimensions of hospitality calling. Study 2 examined calling as a second-order construct with the aforementioned dimensions and proposed calling increases professional identity and decreases intention to leave the industry. However, professional identity did not significantly influence the intention to leave the industry.

Originality/value

This study brings value to the calling literature by exploring the calling dimensions unique to the hospitality workforce. Findings also highlight that subjective professional identity alone cannot lower employees’ intention to leave the industry. Organizational and industry support focusing on transcendent summons, passion and purposeful life are recommended.

Details

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, vol. 34 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-6119

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 14 April 2014

Kate Neequaye and A. Kobina Armoo

While colleges have perceived the importance and growth within the tourism and hospitality industry, students in the industry have mixed feelings about career options that…

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Abstract

Purpose

While colleges have perceived the importance and growth within the tourism and hospitality industry, students in the industry have mixed feelings about career options that are available to them. The purpose of this paper is to discuss factors that underpin students ' perception of career options in the tourism and hospitality industry and to make recommendations for other developing countries.

Design/methodology/approach

A 21-variable structured questionnaire was used to solicit response from 260 Ghanaian tourism and hospitality students. The data was coded and keyed into MINITAB and SPSS statistical processing software. Various multivariate techniques such as Eigen-analysis, correlation analysis and factor analysis were used to analyze the data. Secondary data was also obtained for student records.

Findings

The study revealed that, industry-person congeniality, social benefit factors, opportunity for professional development, and job competitiveness, were crucial in determining students ' choice of career options. Other factors include, career opportunities in tourism and hospitality industry were more easily attainable than in many other sectors of the economy; remuneration in the industry is grossly inadequate.

Research limitations/implications

A limitation of the study is the use of HTM students of one university. Therefore, replication of this study in other tourism and hospitality institutions of higher in other developing countries is strongly recommended to harmonize the findings of this study.

Practical implications

Several implications were found including: getting students to be made aware of the career and career development opportunities available in each sector; educational institutions should partner with industry to provide internship and employment opportunities, that would encourage students to have a better perception of the industry; curb the escalating trend of “brain drain” away for the industry, while the industry should reorganize itself to correct the negative perception of low wages and high turnover.

Originality/value

The study was an original primary study that surveyed students at two tertiary level institutions to determine their perception of the career options available to them. The lessons are of value to stakeholders of Ghana ' s tourism and hospitality industry and relevance to those in other developing countries.

Details

Worldwide Hospitality and Tourism Themes, vol. 6 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1755-4217

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 19 April 2011

Tracy Harkison, Jill Poulston and Jung‐Hee Ginny Kim

This paper seeks to report on research investigating students' and industry's expectations and assumptions of the desired attributes of hospitality employees.

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Abstract

Purpose

This paper seeks to report on research investigating students' and industry's expectations and assumptions of the desired attributes of hospitality employees.

Design/methodology/approach

Views on a range of questions about the value of a hospitality degree are analysed, based on a survey of 74 hospitality managers and 137 students.

Findings

The divergence in views between students and industry was significant. Students thought knowledge and skills were important for new employees, but industry was far more interested in personality. To get promoted, students thought they would have to become good communicators, but industry was more interested in initiative. Industry's views suggest that managers value attitudinal attributes over skills, and are therefore prepared to help employees gain the skills needed for their roles.

Research limitations/implications

There were limited responses from hotel general managers (GMs). Their views on what graduates need to accomplish to reach the position of GM would have added value to this study, so further research focusing on GMs' views is recommended.

Originality/value

This paper analyses the beliefs of hospitality students and industry regarding the desired attributes of hospitality employees. Their expectations and assumptions are significantly different, and the gap is a cause for concern for educators and industry to address.

Details

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, vol. 23 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-6119

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 11 July 2008

Jeremy Taylor and John Forte

The purpose of this paper is to examine the applicability of HACCP within the hospitality industry from the perspective of two qualified and experienced chefs. It is the…

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine the applicability of HACCP within the hospitality industry from the perspective of two qualified and experienced chefs. It is the second article in the second Worldwide Hospitality and Tourism Themes issue of the International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management presenting a new method of HACCP for the hospitality industry and proof of its utility.

Design/methodology/approach

A combination of academic literature and industry materials is used to examine the nature of the hospitality industry, the scale of food safety problems and previous attempts to solve them.

Findings

The paper argues that in its traditional form, and in the way that many external bodies have tried to impose it, HACCP does not work for the hospitality industry and has been anything other than a benefit. However, HACCP could be the very catalyst the industry needs to come to terms with the food safety issues of a changing world. To make the principles meaningful they must be developed for the industry by the industry itself. They cannot simply be transferred from other sectors and superimposed by external agencies.

Originality/value

This informed and detailed chefs' perspective on HACCP in the hospitality industry is the first of its kind. It will be valuable reading for industry bodies, academics, enforcers and governments working with HACCP in this industry.

Details

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, vol. 20 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-6119

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 9 May 2016

Amit Sharma, Victor Eduardo Da Motta, Jeong-Gil Choi and Naomi S. Altman

Economic production analysis can provide critical perspectives on an industry’s performance. The purpose of this paper is to investigate the factor input intensity of…

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Abstract

Purpose

Economic production analysis can provide critical perspectives on an industry’s performance. The purpose of this paper is to investigate the factor input intensity of hospitality and related industries, namely, accommodation, food service and amusement, gaming and recreation (AFAGR), compared to other service industries.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper compared AFAGR with other industries categorized as services by the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS). The NAICS code of up to four digits was used to collect data (US Census Bureau).

Findings

Results of this paper confirm extant literature that food service is more labor-intensive than other service industries; however, this was not true of accommodation and AGR industries. Similarly, while food service industry was relatively less intermediate input intensive than other service industries, accommodation and AGR were not. There were no significant differences between hospitality and other service industries (AFAGR) in their capital intensity. Another important finding was that while accommodation had constant results to scale, AGR had increasing returns to scale and food service industry was found to have decreasing returns to scale.

Research limitations/implications

This investigation only looked at the four-digit NAICS-coded industries. International differences could also be investigated in the future.

Practical implications

Based on theoretical arguments, high labor intensity together with low intermediate input in food service industry suggests that efficiencies could be gained in these businesses. This may also be evident by the decreasing returns to scale that this paper found for the food service industry. These comparisons could guide additional research about the causes, consequences and potential sources of improvement of efficiency of economic productivity in AFAGR. Managers in AFAGR would find it valuable to understand how they might be able to enhance economic output, particularly in the context of the role of labor. Furthermore, any changes in one economic input would have implications on other inputs and possibly on productivity.

Social implications

Any future recalibration of input intensity in hospitality industries could have both social and economic consequence.

Originality/value

This paper enhances our understanding of how hospitality industries use economic factors of production. Labor in AFAGR is viewed as a given. This study suggests that food service industry may need to reevaluate its labor productivity, the way it is measured and how it might affect efficiencies. Such understanding could better inform the sources and causes of economic efficiencies in AFAGR industries. Until now, this understanding has mostly been based on relatively scarce comparative systematic analysis.

Details

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, vol. 28 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-6119

Keywords

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