HKI Großküchenforum

HKI large kitchen forum

Food Service



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HKI large kitchen forum with a lot of findings

Manufacturers, retailers, and professional kitchen managers have to think more about guest and customer benefits. And: The industry must learn to better pick up potential job applicants. These are the findings of the large kitchen forum, to which the HKI Industry Association for House, Heating and Kitchen Technology invited me in mid-December at the International Congress Center Stuttgart.

A central question posed by the managers during the workshop was: Who are the people who are to become my specialists and managers, and how can I get them excited about my tasks? Facts and figures provided by Research Center Demographic Change, and Dekra Personnel services. Based on statistics, one made it clear that the so-called labor force potential will decrease dramatically in the next 15 to 20 years, even under the best conditions such as stable birth rates and further immigration. By 2060, only around 73 million people will live in Germany, he predicted. At the same time, young people are drawn to the hip cities, not the hotspots of most production locations.

Dekra compared the typical characteristics of the baby boomer generations, X, Y and Z. While the baby boomers born up until the mid-1960s worked to live but, self-realization and self-affirmation are life-determining for today’s young professionals. Happy to change and always on the lookout for an even better and more lucrative job, she attests that Generation Z has a „phobia of leadership and responsibility“. One reason for the rampant shortage of skilled workers: being a chef, metalworker or technician is hardly recognized socially. If you want to attract the best talent, you must be hip and set up „recruitainment“ via video. A day to get to know each other with several applicants shows both parties what they are getting into based on practical test work.

Demand for user-friendly technology

This was followed by a panel discussion with the two speakers a Product Manager Digitization Rational, a Managing Director M2M Systems, the founder of the large-scale kitchen networking service provider Kiconn, and a Head of Catering Management at the Hope Valley Lobetal Foundation. One credo is: kitchen technology must be tailored to the needs of the user instead of overwhelming them with too many functions. The vision was formulated in unison to implement all networking interfaces completely independent of the manufacturer. It was also undisputed that digitization and automation cannot compensate for the shortage of skilled workers. Conclusion: You must integrate young people with their strengths and demands. The new work does not fit into the old patterns. On one hand, digitization is being hyped too much and, on the other hand, viewed with fear.

The workshop

Moderator and trainer Ursula Hesselmann made this conclusion in the workshop: Change can only take place step by step. Interdisciplinary and cross-generational communication that values strengths and takes weaknesses into account is decisive for success.


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