What do hospitality workers want? – Inside Indiana Business
Summer is fast approaching. For many Indianapolis restaurant owners and managers, that means dining outdoors, which in turn means finding more staff in a hiring market that has changed dramatically over the past two years. What do workers want in a competitive hiring market? Here’s what our team hears.
LGC is a national endowment headquartered in Indianapolis. Our team makes it a point to stay abreast of hiring trends by listening to client needs and keeping up to date with the latest hiring data in today’s Indianapolis market. A quick web search shows nearly 4,500 restaurant jobs open on Indeed in the Indianapolis market.
- Our staff says the most in-demand positions for Indianapolis customers are cooks, dishwashers, and cafeteria workers.
- Indoor jobs, such as bartenders and servers, are more easily filled by part-time or full-time employees, as they can rely on tips.
It’s easy to adapt to day shifts that have consistent work schedules because a worker can plan transportation and child care ahead of time. Finding ways to fill hard-to-fill positions takes creativity. Think about how to create schedules and opportunities to give people “value for money”.
Create stable shifts for these positions at the back of the house. Establish a consistent weekly schedule with those hard-to-fill hours and offer a higher pay rate ($1-$3) than the coveted full-time day shifts. This gives someone the ability to find consistent transportation and/or childcare. Next, provide workers, especially in downtown Indianapolis, with a place to park.
One of our team members who works to find staff for the client in the city told me, “The client can easily find staff if he offers free parking in the city center, and if the client is outside of Marion County, offer a higher rate of pay for travel time to offset gas.
Here are more ways a restaurant or any business can attract a potential new hire.
Enjoy the experience: From the moment a job candidate makes contact, how do managers and potential colleagues make them feel? The whole team should understand the hiring process and make a potential team member feel welcome. Whether you’re interviewing a construction worker or a full-time candidate, explain the job location and expectations. Then meet those expectations if the candidate is hired. During the hiring decision, keep communicating. If there’s a great company culture, let the potential candidate know why it’s a great place to work.
Define flexibility. It’s a trend that started last year and is here to stay. Be clear about what can and cannot be offered. Restaurants are not about flexibility like someone would find in an office. Companies with customer-facing jobs, including hospitality, are looking to make it work for their teams. Some restaurants close one day a week, while others close earlier than usual during the week.
Development workers: Our company has thousands of gig workers across the country who we want to retain in our talent pool for client jobs. During the pandemic, when fewer people were working, we were able to offer new work experiences. Workers told us they like being able to try new positions and expand their skills. Offer certifications and train team members to help fill in the gaps. It is priceless. A report by the World Economic Forum indicates that a majority of employers recognize the value of investing in human capital.
- Employers expect to provide reskilling and upskilling to just over 70% of employees over the next three years.
- And an average of 66% of employers surveyed expect to see a return on investment in upskilling and reskilling within a year.
Focus on internal talent. It might seem strange for the head of a recruiting company to stress that recruiting teams need to focus on internal talent. It’s not. Your top performers impress both temporary and permanent staff. Seeing upward mobility is inspiring.
General skills. We often say: “Engage for culture”. It has never been so true. According to a recent LinkedIn Global Talent Trends survey, 92% of recruiting and talent professionals said it was “increasingly important” to hire candidates with well-developed people skills, especially in the world of work. constantly evolving. Today’s diners are patient and know that the service is not what it was over three years ago. Still, kindness and patience go a long way with customers. When a business is busy, soft skills are invaluable to the customer service experience.
Small rooms and outdoor space. Small venues are in vogue, with large, well-equipped restaurants becoming a thing of the past. For the customer, this means being around fewer people, which is great from a health and safety perspective. Small venues need fewer staff, and we find that makes workers happier. Bottom line, being around fewer people feels safer and it’s more manageable. Feel free to downsize if it means greater satisfaction all around.
George Lessmeister is CEO and founder of LGC Hospitality, a national staffing company headquartered in Indianapolis. LGC has offices in more than 40 US cities. Team members work with hotel and restaurant management to place executives and temporary workers.