The food service business is a competitive place, and attracting and retaining top talent is one of the biggest issues facing most food business owners. A consistent stream of high quality staff is essential to keep customers happy and to ensure the success of your business.
This comprehensive guide will provide valuable insights and easily actionable strategies to help you recruit the best possible candidates for your restaurant team without taking up too much of your time or stressing you out unnecessarily.
Before starting on your journey to recruit new employees, it’s crucially important to pinpoint the specific roles and responsibilities that require filling in your restaurant, and to dive into exactly what goes with that. A lot of business owners go in knowing ‘I need a chef’ or ‘I’m looking for a manager’ but without a true understanding of what they need from that person, and hoping that someone will just grab their attention in a good way.
This strategy is tempting, but it can often lead to acquiring staff that, while a great interview, aren’t cut out for the job required from them. To plan for this, you need to carry out a comprehensive analysis of your current staffing levels and your ongoing requirements. This will allow you to identify areas where additional staff may be needed or any skill gaps that need to be filled.
Doing this review of your existing workforce will ensure you have a clear understanding of the positions you need to fill and the qualifications required from potential candidates. Once you have identified these requirements, you can create a roadmap to recruit suitable candidates for your restaurant.
The hospitality industry can be a dynamic one, both in staffing needs and retaining employees. Some businesses need 2x-3x the staff in summer that they do in winter, and some employees have adjusted their lives to that kind of schedule and go as quickly as they come. For that reason, it’s crucial to anticipate any future staffing requirements.
By considering your restaurant’s growth and development plans, along with seasonable changes, you can forecast your staffing needs and factor them into your recruitment strategy. This will enable you to be prepared for any changes in staffing needs and adapt accordingly. A proactive approach to planning future staff needs will make sure that you have a stable workforce and prevent any disruption to your restaurant’s success.
With supply and demand making it ever harder for food businesses to fill positions, it’s important that you put out an image for your brand that makes potential employees go ‘Wow! I wanna work there!”. To attract the best talent, it’s essential to establish a strong employer brand that reflects your restaurant’s values, culture, and benefits. An employer brand is a critical factor in attracting and retaining top talent.
To achieve this, you need to define your restaurant’s mission, vision, and values, and communicate them effectively to potential candidates. Your employer brand should reflect the positive aspects of working for your establishment, such as growth opportunities, a supportive team atmosphere, and any unique benefits or perks. Promoting your company culture and highlighting employee success stories are effective ways to establish a compelling employer brand. This brand should be clear on job listings, posters, adverts, websites and especially on the first place potential employees will look you up, Social media.
When employees look you up on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or Google My Business, will they find something good, something bad, or nothing at all? Having a high quality multi-platform presence is the best way to achieve this, and for that we recommend Dinabite, the DIY Social Marketing tool built specifically for food service businesses.
Crafting compelling job advertisements and descriptions is unbelievably important for attracting the right candidates. Just by making a job title clear and concise, and accurately describing the role so it’s easily recognizable by potential candidates is essential. This will make it easier for candidates to find your job postings and understand the position’s requirements.
Much to go with that, a comprehensive job description that provides a detailed overview of the role, its key responsibilities, required skills and any specific experience needed, will ensure the applications you get are far more likely to fit the needs. Make sure to finish the listing off by highlighting the unique aspects of working for your restaurant to differentiate your job postings from the competition.
Choosing the most effective recruitment channels will help you reach a wider pool of candidates. Online job boards, both general and industry-specific, are popular options to leverage. and don’t be afraid to go beyond the traditional job sites, consider using your social media platforms to reach the people who already know and like what you’re doing, and will as a result be more committed if they were to apply. We recommend Dinabite for that.
Encouraging your existing staff to refer potential candidates from their friends and family can be another good way to fill positions quickly, but you have to make sure to be fair and respectful to those they bring in, so that if they aren’t a quality candidate for your position, you don’t lose the original employee as a result.
In conclusion, effective recruitment in the hospitality industry requires a comprehensive approach that includes identifying your recruitment needs, forecasting future staffing requirements, establishing an attractive employer brand, crafting compelling job advertisements and descriptions and choosing the right recruitment channels. Following this guide will equip you to attract top talent for your business, helping you continue to succeed and grow.
If you’re looking for more advice on restaurant marketing, you should download our free Ultimate Guide to DIY Marketing for Restaurant Owners, which covers everything you need to start bringing more people into your restaurant and start making more money.