Role of Soft Skills in Tourism Industry in Saudi Arabia
Keywords:Tourism, Soft Skills, Communication, Education, Employment
The tourism sector is one of the most promising parts of the kingdom’s diversification efforts, and its Vision 2030 envisages the tourism sector to be a major contributor to job creation, given the government’s aim of increasing the number of jobs in the tourism sector by almost 50 percent to 1.5 million by 2020. Many employers today are finding that recent graduates of Saudi Arabia are unprepared to succeed in the workforce because they lack foundational “soft skills.” While technical skills are often industry-specific, soft skills such as professional communication, employers value critical thinking, collaboration, and time management across sectors. Soft skills should be given priority as these play an important role in the tourism sector as these competencies are of indispensable nature. Education institutes need to play a pivotal role in imparting them along with an education to manage tourist destination. This paper is a conceptual paper. It is based on the personal experiences of the authors and the opinions of other subject experts. Data has been collected from various sources like articles, newspapers, websites, reports, journals etc. Research proves that soft skills are essential skills for any of the individuals to excel in the upcoming sectors in Saudi Arabia. In order to achieve 2030 Vision, soft skills can act as a powerful tool in the hands of young aspirants.