Reactions to the national living wage in hospitality

Andreas Walmsley, Shobana Partington, Rebecca Armstrong, Harold Goodwin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to explore reactions to the introduction by the UK Government of theNational Living Wage (NLW) in the UK hospitality sector and consider implications for the status ofemployee relations.Design/methodology/approach – In-depth interviews were conducted with senior industryrepresentatives of the hospitality sector in the UK.Findings – Concerns surrounding an increase in the wage bill, in maintaining pay differentials and inshifting employment to youth were confirmed. Managers expressed ambiguity in face of the legislation,offering agreement at a personal level with the rationale underpinning the NLW, but also expressing concern about impacts on their businesses. Research limitations/implications – This exploratory study offers the basis for further research in understanding the foundation of employee relations in hospitality.Social implications – A reconsideration of the nature of the employment relationship is key at a time of growing concerns about the business-society relationship.
Originality/value – Uses reactions to the UK Government’s stipulation of a NLW to explore the basis of employee relations in the hospitality sector. This is timely where work to date in hospitality has largely focussed on symptoms but not causes of poor working conditions.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)253-268
Number of pages16
JournalEmployee Relations
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 7 Jan 2019
Externally publishedYes


Dive into the research topics of 'Reactions to the national living wage in hospitality'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this