Jobcentre Plus staff in Inverness are targeting the north’s hospitality industry with a range of support for those who are currently out of work.
Skills training and work experience are being offered in the run-up to what is expected to be another bumper tourism season in the Highlands and islands.
Department for Work and Pensions work coach team leader Izabela Fabia said yesterday the list of hospitality sector vacancies was growing.
She added: “We have been working with various employers to offer our claimants short courses to learn skills to work in the industry.
“Just recently, we have had a course start with Diageo for hospitality and bartending, and we are excited to see what opportunities this brings for our claimants.”
“We are working with employers to build our work coaches knowledge on the industry .
“A number of new hotel developments planned over the next year will bring plenty of job opportunities.”
Official new figures show Scottish unemployment has fallen by more than a fifth in the past year, with the jobless total now down to a record low of 94,000.
According to the Office for National Statistics, the number of Scots out of work beween November and January was down by 21.5% year-on-year.
Employment grew by 10% over the year, to stand at 2.68 million, an increase of 13,000 over the quarter.
The unemployment rate in Scotland now stands at 3.5% – lower than the overall rate for the UK of 3.9%.
UK unemployment fell by 35,000 to 1.34m, 112,000 lower than a year ago, giving a jobless rate of 3.9%.
The number of economically inactive people fell by 117,000 in the latest three months to 8.55m, a rate of just under 21%, the lowest on record.
Meanwhile, the number of job vacancies in the economy increased by 4,000 to 854,000.
Monthly claimant count figures are no longer available for individual Jobcenter Plus offices, meaning claimant counts for Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire are the same as last month – down by 8% year-on-year at 4,022 and by 7% to 2,885 respectively.