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Looking for a Rising Star

HR in Hospitality’s Rising Star Award

“We are looking for that Rising Star, the one to watch, somebody who will be a future Leader,” says Esther O’Halloran, Chair of HR in Hospitality. “Our aim is to encourage HR professionals to grow their career and stay in hospitality.”

Having been in existence for 22 years and re-launched in its current form in 2009, HR in Hospitality works to provide a forum for HR professionals within the hospitality sector by acting as a central hub for the industry. A Human Resources role is a constantly evolving one, so apart from organising various social and networking events throughout the year, HR in Hospitality offers valuable discussions and talks and the opportunity to share knowledge and experience. These are especially useful to newcomers to hospitality HR, who the association is keen to help and encourage.

The highlight of the HR in Hospitality year is undoubtedly their annual awards evening which celebrates and rewards teams and individuals for excellence in hospitality HR. Categories include Excellence in promoting careers, talent attraction and Employee Engagement. Sponsored by, one of the top awards of the evening is the Rising Star Award.

“We have always been on the look-out for future talent,” explains Esther O’Halloran. “In the past, the Rising Star award winner just got the trophy and recognition but for the last few years have been really generous with awarding a scholarship to further encourage personal development, skills and credibility in the profession and sector.”

The winner of the Rising Star award will also receive a scholarship for their development from “They are on a career development path where their contribution to the HR team is really making a difference,” Esther continues. “This person may be in any role within the HR team, but you can see their potential through their skills, the way they work and the results they are achieving.”  Entrants can self-nominate or be entered by their organisation. Ideally they need to have worked in HR for at least two years but not necessarily in their current position within the team. Testimonial statements from the HR Director or other managers can be submitted in support of this entry. The winner of this award will also receive the scholarship to use towards developing their personal HR training or qualifications.

In finding a suitable winner, judges take into account how the nominee contributed to the success of the performance of the HR department, what has been the nominee’s personnel development plan, achievements in their career so far and what will be the benefit to them and the organisation in winning this award.

Esther says that the HR in Hospitality Rising Star Award is of enormous benefit to the winner. “It provides recognition from peers and industry colleagues, it’s a real confidence boost and it’s a great opportunity to invest in personal development. We hope that winning the award will encourage loyalty to remain and develop a career in hospitality.”

One recent winner is Natasha Wiggins from Red Carnation Hotels. Of her win, Natasha said, “Winning the award and receiving the scholarship was a brilliant way to build my skills and areas of expertise. I was able to complete the National Certificate in Workplace Mediation. It was a fantastic course that allowed me to learn new skills and will enable me to offer an extra layer of support to the business.”

We will discover just who will walk away with the 2017 Rising Star Award when the HR in Hospitality Awards take place at the Rosewood Hotel on September 29th. It promises to be a special evening and a fantastic chance to network and hear about the great work being done in hospitality human resources.