November 1, 2021 | By Joyce DiMascio

IHG Hotels & Resorts is going all out to loosen up its employment conditions and make working in its family of hotels more flexible and more appealing.

The company says it’s aiming to be “audacious” with its redesigned employment conditions designed to help attract 600 people now and a further 3,000 by the end of 2022.

Leanne Harwood, IHG Hotels & Resorts SVP and Managing Director for Asia Pacific and Japan foreshadowed the plans to increase the appeal of working in hotels in her interview published recently in micenet.

Last week, the company rolled out details of myflex and mybenefits, its new policies that will open up career opportunities and flexible working arrangements for its current and future workforce.

The IHG statement says: “Based on the principle that life and work should complement each other rather than compete, new colleagues who sign up with IHG as a myFlexer simply plug into the system and then get full flexibility to choose their hours and balance their work/life commitments.”

“MyFlexers are paid at the full Hospitality Industry General Award (HIGA) rate or above, and…will need to commit to working a minimum (but low) number of hours over any period to ensure they remain active.

“They’re then able to self-schedule their hours at any IHG managed hotel using innovative Kronos technology, flexing or pausing their hours and availability at any time,” IHG says.

It’s an extraordinary development and demonstrates how innovation is driving the competition for talent attraction and retention.

There are currently 62 IHG-branded hotels open across Australasia under brands including InterContinental, Crowne Plaza, Hotel Indigo, Holiday Inn and Holiday Inn Express, as well as recently launched brands voco and Vignette Collection.

A further 35 hotels are due to open in the next few years opening up even more opportunities for life-long careers in the sector.

Existing IHG hotel colleagues will also enjoy increased flexible work options, and from February all full and part-time employees who are normally rostered by their manager will be able to bid for the shifts they prefer, using the same Kronos tool as new employees.

IHG says the message is “we are up for anything, and flexibility requests of all shapes, colours and sizes will be open for discussion”.

Belinda Iacono, Marketing Manager at Holiday Inn Sydney Airport, who has worked in IHG hotels for more than five years said she was already benefiting from the new way of working. She works two days a week in marketing for a Sydney hotel from Melbourne.

“I am loving the opportunity to learn a new market with a new team,” she said.

Matt Tripolone, IHG’s Managing Director for Australasia and the Pacific said the traditional employer rule book has well and truly been cast out the window over the past two years.

“For the hotel industry, we want job seekers to know that we offer great pay and conditions, elevated with unmatched flexibility and fantastic benefits. And, alongside this flexibility, you can have a stellar career in hotels regardless of the field in which you specialise: from marketing, to HR, finance, sales IT or frontline operations,” he said.