Situ‘s Head of the People team, Leah Searle, recently attended the BTA (Business Travel Association) People and Talent Conference 2023 in London.
The conference discussed topics around best practice in recruitment and talent acquisition, employee development and retention, and supporting employee wellbeing; as well as equity, diversity, and inclusion in the workplace.
‘Tomorrow’s Travel Leaders’
Who are tomorrow’s leaders, and where do we find them?
On this important topic, speakers at the conference shared their own success stories about how to inspire interest and excitement in young people of different ages about the business travel industry. They noted that working with schools is essential in order to share their own knowledge and experience. Likewise, mentoring programmes and industry master classes for students/ graduates still uncertain about their career options is a must.
The subject of apprenticeships was also touched upon, and how great apprenticeships can be for a business. These can be used for new starters and also for current employees looking to develop their skills. On an interesting note, there is a wide range of Government support for apprenticeships that may not be fully taken advantage of that businesses can look into when recruiting.
Leah Searle, Head of the People team at Situ says,
“It was great to network with other companies to find out what they are doing, learn from each other on best practices and share suggestions/thoughts.
I loved the topic of how we can look to attract more people into the industry – it was really inspiring to hear the great projects being worked on and the work IIT Future You are doing with colleges and schools.”
IIT Future You acts as a bridge between the education sector and industries, to inspire the next generation of aviation, travel, tourism, and hospitality professionals.
So how do we make sure our workplaces are inclusive? (DE&I)
Other important discussions at the conference centred on diversity, equity, and inclusion (DE & I). How do we ensure that our workplaces are inclusive? The ideas that workplaces need to focus on belonging as a key starting point was highlighted. Speakers recommended beginning by looking at inclusivity. Companies need to have the right policies and practices in place to ensure that everyone feels included and respected within teams and departments.
Speakers underlined the idea that inclusion is what’s required to give diversity real impact and drive, so that we can head towards a world of work where everyone is empowered to thrive. And while diversity and inclusion often go hand in hand, inclusion is fundamentally about individual experience and allowing everyone at work to contribute and feel a part of an organisation.
Employee wellbeing is vital
Another topic discussed at the conference was employee wellbeing. Individuals as well as businesses have faced great challenges during the past years, including the pandemic and rising living and energy costs. These are all affecting people’s mental health.
There was also discussion about whether businesses should start looking at the way they pay employees, for example, by having a way that employees can access their pay before payday. This could help with unexpected bills and so on.
Taking positive steps…
The take-home message from the BTA People & Talent Conference 2023 was that if businesses are looking to attract and retain the best talent in a more competitive recruitment market, then paying attention to company culture is crucial. This begins with inclusivity in the workplace, and a definite focus on mental health for long-term growth.