The analysis of data from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) from chartered accountants and business adviser Hazelwoods showed in 2012, the average weekly earnings of hospitality workers was £328, nine years later in 2021 it was £409 and last year, it increased to £502. This is a rise of 53.1% in 10 years and 22.8% from 2021 to 2022.
Furthermore, workers in the industry also experienced the fasted wage inflation in the past 12 months with average weekly pay increasing by almost a quarter (23%) from £409 in 2021 to £502 in 2022.
The average hospitality worker saw four times as much wage inflation as the UK’s average worker, with wages rising 4.9% from £696 a week in 2021 to £729 last year.
Hazelwoods associate partner Rebecca Copping put the hike partly down to rises in the national minimum wage. This has increased by more than half (53%) in the past decade – from £6.19 an hour in 2012 to £9.50 in 2022.
The wage hikes have been driven by labour shortages as a result of Brexit restrictions reducing the number of workers coming to the UK from the EU.
According to the business advisers, under the UK’s new immigration system, overseas workers must apply for the a skilled worker visa but relatively few jobs in the hospitality sector meet the skill and salary criteria required.
Due to the shortages, employers have been forced to hike wages in a bid to attract British and Irish nationals to these positions.
Copping added: “Hospitality workers have seen minimum wage rises and Brexit combine to drive up their wages sharply over the past 10 years.
“Recruiting from what is now a finite pool of workers in a much more competitive market has meant pay levels have had to increase markedly.
“Higher wages are good news for staff in the sector but they are putting the industry’s weak margins under even greater pressures.”