The headlines are full of layoffs, furloughs and hiring freezes across the travel and hospitality industry, as companies take steps to survive the coronavirus crisis.
Most recently, Airbnb announced it was laying-off 25% of its workforce, Tripadvisor said it will cut up to 900 employees and Uber slashed its customer support and recruitment headcount by 3,700.
The World Travel and Tourism Council estimates 100 million jobs will be lost in the travel sector, with the organization saying in late-April that a million jobs were being lost each day.
It can be hard to find light at the end of what seems like a long, dark tunnel but any companies that do have the budget to hire are likely to have their pick of a talented, experienced group of people.
Some startups, such as those that have received funding recently, have made some hires, while others are looking at how they might take advantage of the talent out there.
A month ago, Steve Jackson, CEO of tours and activities platform Toristy, was thinking about how to secure funding to hire a B2B sales person, saying at the time: “It may sound mad given the current circumstances and the fact we have very little finance for 2020, but if I can figure out a way, I’d love to do it because I am guessing there is talent that wouldn’t otherwise be available.”
Candor, a company specializing in salary negotiations, agrees. It is running a live, user-generated tally of companies in all sectors that are hiring, have hiring freezes in place or have announced lay offs.
The company says any brands that hiring will have their pick of the best candidates.
Fast forward a month and Jackson says he’s in the process of hiring. He’s hopeful of being able to finalize the recruitment of an ex-Tripadvisor employee as well as potentially giving some freelance work to someone who used to work for Klook.
“Both are pretty senior in what I need. What I have discussed is pretty lucrative but relies on them selling so if we pulled in a good pilot we could pay an attractive commission as a project fee from the first three months of revenues which with the right pilot could be a lot for the sales person.”
Jackson is also hopeful of being able to hire a further person in Finland, as a result of pre-existing government funding that is not related to COVID-19.
Finally, access to a startup fund in Finland, known as ELY, might provide a further financial boost to the company.