Leading independent hotel group, Elite Hotels, has selected the next budding hospitality professionals to join its exclusive Trainee Management Programme in 2019. A rigorous application process was carried out to identify the brightest hospitality talents, which began in January with written applications, followed by telephone interviews and then a two-day assessment at Ashdown Park Hotel & Country Club in East Sussex. On the first day of the two-day event, nine shortlisted candidates took part in a range of team building activities serving as an ice breaker and also, to assess the individuals’ leadership and directional skills. The second day of assessments saw candidates lead presentations on establishing a loyalty programme for a hotel group like Elite Hotels, where they discussed the values behind such programmes and how the consumer would benefit. Then, each candidate attended interviews with members of the senior management team, covering the three key areas of customer service, people management and personal motivation. During their visit, the potential employees also experienced the five-star Elite service from the guest’s perspective by staying overnight at the hotel and enjoying a private dining experience with the hotel’s 2 AA Rosette Anderida Restaurant head chef. Following the assessment day, Elite Hotels’ training and development team assessed the candidates’ performance, taking into account previous experience, passion and skill set. This resulted in four applicants being chosen to start in September 2019, for what will be the seventh year of the scheme. Out of the four, three applicants have accepted their roles; Lisa Provis, May Farrow and Kirsten Steere. There will be an on-boarding day at Tylney Hall Hotel & Gardens in July, before the new trainee managers start the programme in September. The programme will last around 22 months and will combine experience in both front and back of house hotel operations. The trainee managers will be mentored by members of the senior management team from across the four Elite Hotels: Ashdown Park Hotel & Country Club in East Sussex, Luton Hoo Hotel, Golf & Spa on the Hertfordshire/Bedfordshire border, Tylney Hall Hotel & Gardens in Hampshire and The Grand Hotel in Eastbourne. The specially formatted programme has been designed by Elite Hotels for those looking to further their hospitality careers, with expert guidance, first-hand experience and invaluable opportunities for individuals to learn from the very best in the field. Up to six candidates are inducted into the programme each year and upon successful completion of the programme, they will have the chance to apply for entry level management positions. Graeme Bateman, managing director of the Elite Hotel Group said: “After an inspiring two days of learning more about the applicants we are looking forward to welcoming the successful trainee managers onto our programme. The encouragement of training and development is something we believe strongly in and we have therefore designed this Trainee Management Programme to fully support employees in their goal to reach hotel management level. This training opportunity enables candidates to learn from industry professionals while developing their skills and growing key contacts. “At Elite we believe in the power of internal recruitment and ensure that all members of staff have access to relevant training to aid their career progression. We are excited to working with our new group of trainee managers and look forward to seeing them flourish into Elite Hotel employees.” For more information about the Trainee Management Programme at Elite Hotels visit, www.careersatelitehotels.co.uk/training-development.