SHATEC Launches Unique Hospitality Talent Development Programme with Apprenticeship Diploma

The training arm of Singapore Hotel Association engages hotel employers with apprenticeship opportunities amidst labour shortage.

  • 10:57 AM, 13 Sep, 2022

(Singapore, 12 September 2022) The training arm of Singapore Hotel Association, SHATEC, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with NTUC’s Employment and Employability Institute (e2i) and 12 hotel partners who are onboard with its newly launched Hotel Apprenticeship Diploma Programme (HA-DiP). The signing took place at the SHATEC x e2i Hotel Symposium and Career Fair, held September 12 at the Devan Nair Institute for Employment and Employability.

Mr Lim Boon Kwee SHATEC CEO delivers welcome address

HA-DiP is part of the industry’s latest efforts in attracting and developing local talent. This collaboration between institution and hotel partners will provide customized training supported via structured industry mentorship, with the objective of developing work-ready graduates who are deep skilled through applied learning pedagogy. As the employment and employability partner for this initiative, e2i will work together with the hotels to support workers’ upskilling and refer potential jobseekers. The signing was witnessed by Ms Margaret Heng, Executive Director of the Singapore Hotel Association and those attending the Symposium and Career Fair.

SHATEC, in partnership with SHA, will launch HA-DiP with the first run offering the WSQ Diploma in Hotel and Accommodation Services track. The programme will be expanded to include at least 40 hotels offering apprenticeship opportunities across the hospitality sector, in culinary arts as well as events management by 2023. HA-DiP programmes will last 18 months with 50% of curriculum time conducted via On-the-Job training at the workplace. 

The programme is targeted at early jobseekers and mid-career individuals who are keen to pursue and accelerate a hotel career while acquiring in demand skills and industry qualified knowledge.

“We design our training delivery in close partnership with SHA and hotel employers to ensure our graduates are equipped with the skills needed by the industry,” said Mr Lim Boon Kwee, Chief Executive Officer of SHATEC in his Welcome Address at the Symposium and Career Fair. “HA-DiP will provide an alternative pathway for jobseekers to upgrade themselves for accelerated career advancement opportunities in the hospitality industry while helping hotel employers meet manpower needs. We hope to attract a greater pool of local talent, help them access quality jobs in the hotel sector and ultimately retain them in this industry.” 

One-to-one career mentorship will form the cornerstone of the HA-DiP in providing strategic level support to trainees throughout the apprenticeship period. Trainees will receive personalised coaching from experienced leaders at the workplace who will help mitigate steep learning curves and job role acclimatisation. 

Kung Teong Wah General Manager of Parkroyal Beach Road, (pictured right) addressed the Symposium on the subject of Career Prospects in the Hotel Industry. He pointed out some reasons why people would be deterred from joining the industry. They include shift work and weekend duties. The physical work required and an entry level salary would be a deterrent to some too.

He went on to note the positives of a career in hospitality. “It is an industry in which one can enjoy a life-long career and there are training and development programmes so one has the opportunity to rise in their career development and career path,” he pointed out. “There are overseas working opportunities and travel opportunities and the industry has good benefits and good remuneration.”

Mr Lim chaired a Panel Session on Gen X, Y, Zs in the Hotel Workspace: Connecting, Engaging and Retaining employees. Ms Alice Lee, Complex Director of Human Resources, JW Marriott Hotel Singapore South Beach | The St. Regis Singapore, Ms Tay Zhi Xin, Chef Syahir Bin Osman and Mr Jason Pang joined Mr Kung on stage for this session. 

“Our industry is undergoing a major shift,” said CEO Lim. “What is the most important thing the industry can do to retain people?”

All the relevant parties signed the MOU on a device

Mr Kung replied, “You need to connect with your staff. All of them. Talk to them and engage them.”

Ms Lee agreed that losing staff to other industries can be prevented by how ‘we engage staff and how we make the job interesting for them’. “This job is about passion. We need to connect with guests and staff and that starts with a smile.”

“What is important to me,” stated Ms Tay, “is being empathetic with both our guests and our staff. New staff needs the support of seniors who have experience in the industry. We need to see things from different perspectives so that we understand the needs and feelings of others. If you are happy yourself, you will bring happiness to guests and co-workers.”

Chef Syahir Bin Osman, “For me to stay in this industry it is important that I take up many different courses. I feel it is important that I be ready for anything that comes my way. The more prepared you are then you will get more opportunities.”

What attracted Mr Pang to the hotel industry was the opportunity to meet with international staff and guests and be able to learn from them.

Mr Lim Chaired the panel discussion 

A total of 12 SHA-member hotels are on board for the pilot run of the HA-DiP commencing on 3 October 2022. They are: 1. Amara Hotel Singapore, 2. Grand Mercure Singapore Roxy, 3. InterContinental Singapore, 4. JW Marriott Hotel Singapore South Beach, 5. Novotel Singapore on Stevens | Mercure Singapore in Stevens, 6. PARKROYAL COLLECTION Marina Bay, Singapore, 7. PARKROYAL on Beach Road, 8. Raffles Hotel Singapore, 9. The Fullerton Bay Hotel Singapore, 10. The Fullerton Hotel Singapore, 11. The Ritz-Carlton, Millenia Singapore, and 12. The St. Regis Singapore. 

CEO Lim also announced a new scholarship programme, “In the coming year, SHATEC will launch the Hotel Industry Scholarship Programme with our SHA-member partners, and we are inviting frontier companies to come on board this programme with us to harness new talent for the workforce. This is the next phase of our talent development initiative which will be open to full-time students pursing a hospitality, culinary, pastry or tourism relevant course with SHATEC. Students can benefit from both financial support and quality employment outcomes with our elite careers partners.”

SHATEC was established in 1983 by the Singapore Hotel Association to equip Singapore’s hospitality industry with a skilled workforce. In the past 39 years SHATEC has distinguished itself as one of Singapore’s most recognised hospitality schools with many of its 30,000 strong alumni from more than 20 countries helming key positions in the hospitality and tourism industry.

More information on HA-DiP is available at

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