Recruitment ‘key’ to future growth of Fred Olsen Travel Group

Recruitment will be key to future growth of the Fred Olsen Travel Group, according to group managing director Steve Williams.

The company has already taken on 23% more full-time equivalents year on year and invested in its staff and training to support that growth, he told this year’s retail conference in Buckinghamshire.

“The key factor for any business can be the success of the staff. We lost people during the pandemic but we are now almost at a full compliment of staff,” he said, noting: “We have a responsibility to bring people back into the industry and support careers [in travel].”

Last year the company set up the Fred Olsen Travel Academy, an inhouse training academy. It currently has seven agents training to join its shop network. The group also has nine apprentices in its new joiner development programme.

A recent staff culture survey enjoyed a response rate of 79% with 89% showing ‘postiive engagement’ with the company based on questions such as whether they would recommend the firm as a place to work and if they saw themselves working there for 12 months.

Williams said that while the company was currently “in a pretty good place”, tbere was still “so much to do” as part of its growth plans.

He admitted: “The speed we are growing can be scary [for staff] but it creates great opportunities for people to grow their business with Fred Olsen Travel. The journey has really just begun.”

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