Hotels must increase HR budgets to prevent high turnover of staff, industry experts have warned.
Research from hospitality recruitment firm Indago International shows that the hotel sector paid an average salary of £11,900 in 2003/4, compared to £26,000 in the airline business and £37,000 in other areas of travel and tourism.
Hotels have had huge issues with staff turnover for many years - the Chartered Institute of Personnel Development puts the industry figure at 45.7%, some three times the UK national average.
To address the problem, Indago said central HR strategies must be updated to provide remuneration in tandem with a modern benefits packages - not just free meals and uniforms.
While salary levels are a key decider when choosing an employer, the emphasis is now more often on corporate or brand reputation being just as important to the potential employee, it said.
Dominic Armstrong, managing director of Indago International, said: "Hoteliers must recognise that their employees have realised that toiling 70 hours a week doesn't bring more money, more promotion or any guarantee of job security. Hence such appalling staff turnover.
"If hotel companies focused as much time and effort on their rewards philosophy as they do on brand marketing, perhaps the industry would not constantly be trying to solve the conundrum of such high staff turnover."