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From L-R, Skillnet Ireland Chief Executive, Paul Healy, President of the Irish Hotels Federation, Elaina Fitzgerald Kane, and Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science, Simon Harris.

Skillnet Ireland and The Irish Hotels Federation (IHF) has this week launched a new Irish Hotels Federation Skillnet Business Network to address business and skills challenges within this industry. Designed in collaboration with industry leaders to meet the needs of Irish hotels and guesthouses and their teams, this Skillnet Business Network aims to deliver best practice learning and development opportunities through high-quality, subsidised training and events.

The suite of supports offered by the Irish Hotels Federation Skillnet is available to hotels and guesthouses and will encourage productivity, growth, and collaboration within the sector. Training programmes available include leadership and training skills for the hotel industry, craft training courses on bar service skills, food service skills and housekeeping skills and a focus on customer care through a special ‘Welcoming Back the Guest’ programme.  There are also a wide range of accredited training programmes in development for Autumn 2021 including HR management, leadership and development for new managers, digital marketing, train the trainer, facilities and IT skills.

Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science Simon Harris TD noted:

Ireland rightfully enjoys an international reputation for the excellence of our tourism and hospitality sector. Although it has been a difficult 15 months for the industry, everyone involved has shown great resilience and innovation, and it’s time now to focus on building up skills to protect staff and businesses as we emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The Irish Hotels Federation Skillnet will be a huge asset to those working in hotels and guesthouses throughout Ireland.  You can always learn something that will help your business or your career grow, and I would really encourage people working in the sector to take the training and development opportunities offered.”

Speaking at the launch, Chief Executive of Skillnet Ireland, Paul Healy said: “Preparing businesses for the recovery is a core focus of Skillnet Ireland. We are delighted to partner with the Irish Hotels Federation to launch the new IHF Skillnet Business Network, which will play a pivotal role in addressing the industry’s skills shortage, in driving innovation and in supporting the competitiveness of businesses in this vital sector of our economy.”

Elaina Fitzgerald Kane, President of the Irish Hotels Federation (IHF) added “As hotels and guesthouses continue to welcome back guests, it is an opportune time to offer bespoke training and upskilling support to their teams. The programmes offered through the IHF Skillnet support the continued development of the wide variety of careers available throughout our industry, from culinary arts to leadership and management.

For hotels and guesthouses, retaining skilled, trained teams is essential to the quality and professionalism of their offering. Irish hotels have always had a well-earned reputation globally for their high service standards, and the training offered by the IHF Skillnet will ensure that reputation is maintained in what continues to be a highly competitive market.”

To find out more about the Irish Hotels Federation Skillnet, visit

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