Waterfront helps give city 8% employment boost

Dundee’s hospitality sector is bringing a jobs boost to the city, as the billion-pound Waterfront redevelopment begins to take shape.

That’s according to Jane McEwen from the Department for Work and Pensions, who says the employment rate in the city has risen by 8% from the same period last year.

Jane McEwen

The service manager at the Jobcentre, based at the Wellgate, said more Dundonians are finding hospitality jobs, as well as work through the travel and tourism sector, thanks largely to developments at the Waterfront.

And Jane said things could only get better for Dundonians once the long-awaited opening of the V&A Design Museum takes place in September.

Ms McEwen said: “Once the V&A and all the restaurants open, I think we’ll see even more of a difference.

“We’re not labour experts, but we can see that people are moving into this kind of work whether it’s full or part-time. I think there is more confidence among employers now that they’re seeing everything happening down there.”

Figures back in January showed that one in three adults living in Dundee was out of work. The city was reported to have the lowest employment rate in the UK at 64%, below the nationwide average of 74%.

This put Dundee at the bottom of the employment table, followed by Birmingham and Liverpool. But with the V&A Musuem anticipated to bring 500,000 visitors to the city in its first year, hoteliers, restaurateurs and businesses are working to cash in on the expected tourist boom.

However, Ms McEwen says there are many other initiatives being developed with businesses in Dundee as the city hopes for a kickstart in economic growth.

She added: “There’s a lot of work that’s been done with the Scottish Government at the moment to support the vacancies they have.

“We’re working with Xplore Dundee to try to help people who want to work for them as bus drivers, and we’re also doing some supportive work for Smyths Toys with their assessment centres before they open.

“We believe that work is the best way out of poverty and we’re definitely seeing improvements in the employment sector in Dundee.

“We want to do even better to help people.”