Travel Counsellors is introducing a ‘return to work’ scheme following its best January for recruitment in a decade.
The move comes as travel recruitment firms also enjoy a strong start to 2016, with some reporting “unprecedented” levels of new candidates.
Travel Counsellors managing director Steve Byrne said the scheme was in response to a rise in job applications from travel professionals who had been out of the industry for several years.
It has just under 100 people in the pipeline for this year, with 10 signed up for induction training this month.
Byrne said: “This [programme] is driven by demand. This is our best January in terms of recruitment for 10 years.
“We started to notice we were getting an increase in enquiries from people who have been out of the industry for six or seven years. They have travel experience but need an industry refresher.”
He put the surge in applications down to Travel Counsellors’ reputation and increased confidence among candidates to run their own business from home.
The scheme includes a three‑week induction, comprising two weeks at Travel Counsellors’ head office and one at home. It covers policies, procedures and technology developments.
Byrne said there was clear demand for the scheme, adding: “It helps grow the business. The quality threshold has not changed; the criteria to become a travel counsellor is the same.”
Gail Kenny, managing director of Gail Kenny Executive Recruitment, which specialises in executive level recruitment in the industry, also reported a bumper January.
“We have seen unprecedented volumes of candidates coming in the market,” she said. “We can also see the work-life balance becoming more important among candidates.”
Owen Mckeon, content and online marketing manager at C&M Travel Recruitment, said: “We had a big increase in candidates in January compared to December, but this was still actually down compared with January 2015.”
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