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Skills and training in the service sector examined


The Work Foundation have produced an report into skills and training in the service sector which looks in particular at how lower skilled workers coming into the industry are trained and developed.

Commissioned by McDonalds with a view to informing the skills debate, the study considers the structure and use of training within a sector which traditionally employees lower skilled workers and questions the widely-held view that skills and training are especially poor in the service sector, particularly in areas such as catering and retail.

The report identifies the increasing importance to employers of key or soft skills, both among new young recruits and among managers. Skills in areas such as customer service and communications are crucial to much of the service sector and, the report suggests, tend to be less prevalent among the types of people that form the labour market for much of the service sector.

Using the example of McDonalds, Whitbread, Tesco and ASDA, the author argues that not only is there a great deal of good training and development practice within the service sector, but that this is helping to address skill gaps and enhance organisational performance.


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