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Professional skills

The EU is the world's no 1 tourist destination. To keep this position, we need to continuously improve the quality of our services. This includes quality hospitality training and motivated, knowledgeable staff.

Adapting tourism activity to globalisation and new market demands will require additional efforts to improve the professional skills of workers in the sector. Particular attention should be given to adapting to new technologies and customer expectations, and encouraging cross border mobility.
DG Enterprise and Industry has a short and medium term agenda with concrete and targeted outcomes for the tourism sector. We are also looking continuously for potential opportunities for tourism activities through cooperation with other DGs.

Short term - EURES

  • a dedicated hospitality-sector section in EURES, the EU Job Mobility Portal (operational in early 2013), allowing employers to assess the skills and experiences of job candidates from their own and other EU countries, facilitate a better match of supply and demand on the labour market for the hotel and restaurant sector and thus improve the mobility of workers.
  • Integration in Eures of other dedicated sections for adventure, blue, and cultural tourism segments by spring 2014.
  • Mapping the skills and training needs for improved accessibility of tourism services. More on accessible tourism

Medium term – Tourism skills competences framework

  • developing a tourism skills competences framework in different phases, through active involvement of our stakeholders as well as a forthcoming call for tenders:
    • A structured model of the skills/competences needed in the tourism sector and how they map onto occupations in the sector, developed in cooperation with DG Employment – in the framework of ESCO (European Skills/Competences, Occupations and Qualifications). The first version of this classification is expected by the end of 2013, the final version by mid 2014. A description of certificates and qualifications and the associated skills/competences will be established.
      • Supply side assessment of education and training for the tourism sector. Mapping of available training and education and performance check of the extent to which they provide for the requirements and needs of the labour market.
      • Concrete policy recommendations targeted at the tourism sector and development of operational cooperation procedures between academics and industry to close the gaps between offer and demand of learning outcomes.
      A call for tenders to cover the 2 latter items will be published in July 2013. Work will start in April 2014.
  • Monitoring of opportunities – making best use of existing programmes
    • integrating tourism specific initiatives in the EU funding programmes for training, such as the Lifelong Learning Programme (Erasmus, Comenius, Leonardo da Vinci, Grundtvig), the forthcoming 'Erasmus+' and 'Erasmus for Young Entrepreneurs'. Promoting awareness of the initiatives among tourism-sector stakeholders and workers.
    • Monitoring sector-specific developments in common European frameworks such as the European Qualifications Framework (EQF), Europass and the European Credit System for VET (ECVET).
    • A dedicated project funded by a recent call for proposals by DG Education and Culture, looking for projects under the Sector Skills Alliances, which acknowledges the importance of the tourism sector.

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