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Cocktails and careers: Recruitment festival to showcase hundreds of jobs in city region’s booming visitor economy

  • Up to 30 employers and more than 500 jobs on offer at post-Eurovision event
  • On-day job offers and salaries of more than £30,000 up for grabs
  • Jobseekers can try out cocktail making and other skills at fair with a difference
  • Liverpool Arena and John Lewis among recruiters
  • Roles for major events and Festive season plus long-term careers available

A jobs festival with a party atmosphere is to showcase hundreds of vacancies in Liverpool City Region’s booming visitor economy.

The major event at Liverpool’s M&S Bank Arena will host interactive skills sessions, including masterclasses by cocktail makers, making non-alcoholic mocktails, and baristas, in a push to recruit staff for the city region’s thriving hospitality and leisure sector.

Hundreds of jobseekers are expected to attend the ‘Skills and Recruitment Festival’ which again sees the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority join forces with the DWP, Liverpool City Council and Growth Platform to showcase current vacancies and long-term careers, some attracting salaries of more than £30,000 a year.

More than 500 vacancies will be available, and jobseekers will be offered the chance to try out relevant skills alongside informal “speed dating” chats with employers.

The interactive show is the latest in a series of high-profile jobs fairs aimed at filling vacancies in a sector which is worth £5bn each year to the local economy.

It looks to build on the success of recruitment drives for Eurovision, Aintree and The Open – with the world-famous events attracting hundreds of thousands of extra visitors to the city region. Publicity surrounding Eurovision is predicted to increase visitor numbers by 5% over the next few years.

Jobseekers do not need to register for the event and some job offers will made on the day.

Liverpool City Region Combined Authority Executive Director, Policy Strategy and Government Relations, Kirsty McLean said:

“The Liverpool City Region visitor economy has continued to grow in the wake of Eurovision and targeted recruitment fairs have been both popular and very successful.

“This latest event is a jobs fair with a difference which aims to build on that momentum by giving people a real feel for some of the roles available but also showing that hospitality and leisure can be a stable, rewarding and long-term career.”

The fair is open to the public and takes place at the M&S Bank Arena on Tuesday 29 August with two sessions being held from 10am to 1pm and 1pm to 4pm, offering roles from entry level positions to team leaders.

Employers will include The ACC Liverpool Group, John Lewis and Liverpool One.

Interactive stands will showcase live demonstrations on the main Arena floor with training providers offering the chance to book onto skills courses.

The recruitment drive follows a £4.5m, two-year strategy unveiled by Liverpool City Region Mayor Steve Rotheram last year to help the city region’s hospitality and tourism industry return to full health after it was devastated by the pandemic.

New figures published last week showed the city region’s visitor economy was worth more in 2022 than before the pandemic in 2019. That’s before the economic boost of this year’s major events including Eurovision are taken into account.

In October 2022, Be More – a new, all-in-one training and careers portal, complete with an AI-powered app – was launched to connect residents with employment and opportunities.

Janet Nuzum, Visitor Economy Sector Manager at Growth Platform – Liverpool City Region Growth Company, said:

“As we have already seen from the amazing success of previous recruitment fairs there is a huge appetite for people looking for roles in the hospitality and wider tourism sector.

These fairs are an invaluable way for us to highlight the significant role that hospitality plays in making sure all our visitors have an exceptional time when they come here.

And with the latest figures showing that the sector is worth over £5bn to the city region there really is no better time to be a part of such an important and exciting industry.”

Linda Usher Senior Operations Leader for the DWP, added:

“This has been a fantastic collaboration to secure hundreds of opportunities towards sustainable work for people across the city region.

“I want to encourage those looking for work to attend and have the opportunity to speak to prospective employers face to face.

“It’s crucial that people of all ages and backgrounds have the chance to progress and we want people to know we are there to support them into work.”

Lynsey Watson, Director of People at The ACC Liverpool Group:

“We are really focused on contributing to and encouraging a re-positioning of the events industry as an attractive career, to overcome recruitment challenges and skill gaps. The best approach to reinforce this is by working together with key organisations across the region.

“There are a multitude of job roles across this incredible industry and we are pleased to be able to provide a venue where job seekers and recruiters can explore these opportunities to meet demand across the wider visitor economy.”