AH&LA survey: Hotels offering good jobs, high wages

The American Hotel & Lodging Association and WageWatch released research in September that shows the hotel industry offers good, high-paying jobs with benefits and a fast track to senior positions within the hospitality sector.

The survey findings came as the Bureau of Labor Statistics Employment report for August showed sustained job growth in the seasonally adjusted accommodations segment of the Leisure and Hospitality sector. Labor data has seen 51 months of steady growth, recovering from pre-recession highs, and is at its highest level since 2008.

The survey, released by AH&LA and WageWatch, shows that most job titles in the lodging industry pay above minimum wage. More than half of respondents have starting rates above the minimum wage for eight out of 10 job titles surveyed. 

“The hotel sector is clearly the bright spot in our nation’s economy and this survey underscores what we have known all along: Hotel jobs are good jobs, with high wages, benefits and the opportunity to advance quickly into a life-long career,” said Katherine Lugar, president and CEO of AH&LA.

Randy Pullen, president and CEO of WageWatch, said, “The survey findings show that the hotel industry is a leader in job creation, advancement opportunities and high wages. Current efforts to significantly increase entry-level wages could be disruptive and have negative and unintended consequences for the entire hotel wage scale. The pervasiveness of local, extreme wage increases will affect the entire wage structure of a business, which will undoubtedly slow or stifle further job creation in a local market.”

Highlights of the survey include

* Nearly 40 percent of respondents pay 100 percent of their workforce above the minimum wage.

* Almost half (45.1 percent) pay 75 percent or more of their employees above the minimum wage.

* 85.8 percent of the respondents provide medical insurance benefits to non-exempt workers. Nearly 62 percent who offer employee healthcare benefits, subsidize basic individual plan premiums at 60 percent or greater.

* 80 percent of minimum wage workers are eligible for promotion in less than a year and 100 percent are eligible in less than 2 years.