“Help Wanted”: How to get that sign out of your window & bring in quality staff

“Help wanted” — the 2021 buzz phrase across businesses, especially those in the service industry. In a post-pandemic world, it’s become increasingly difficult to find staff amidst a massive worker shortage. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, service employees are quitting at extremely high rates. Service workers are willing and able to leave their jobs to seek better opportunities, as the industry is in high demand for these positions.

As a business owner or hiring manager, you know that quality staff is integral to running your business successfully. Setting out on a hiring spree during these times can be one of the least rewarding ventures. It can eat up a lot of time and resources, especially because it’s one area where you don’t want to “settle.” The candidates you’re seeking will be the face and personality of your business and often a critical touchpoint with your customers. 

There are plenty of strategic tips to make hiring much easier and less daunting! Hiring staff during these times can even be an opportunity to improve your current operations and get to know your business better! 

Restaurants are hiring everywhere – Make yourself stand out.

Lean into what you offer.

There’s a reason the service industry seems to be suffering more than most — roles in the service industry are not always glamorous and all too often staff are not treated with the respect and dignity they should be. As a business owner in the industry, you have probably observed this yourself. And while the assumption might be that the root is government assistance, the current labor shortage is much more complex.

Employees have been granted time to reconsider the type of work they want, and many are hesitant to return to service industry jobs. With that being said, there are many aspects of jobs in the hospitality industry that make them exciting and fulfilling. Lean into what your business offers to its employees with empathy for their experience this past year, and what they may be looking for. The qualities you advertise will vary based on what is unique to your company, but the options are endless.

Including a pay range during this time seems to be a must for hiring success. This is one of the first factors applicants will inquire about, make it easy for them! Are your schedules very flexible for people like students looking for part-time hours? On the contrary, can your business sustain an employee looking for full-time hours? Maybe you have an amazing culture and a staff that gets together often. Your company’s leverage over others could be as simple as your really cool uniforms that employees are proud to wear.

What are you looking for? Be picky.

This might sound counterintuitive to your goals. You might even say to yourself, “why would I be picky with staff in a massive worker shortage? I’ll take anyone just to get by.” And while this strategy might get you by for a short while, searching for candidates this way will waste the time of both you and your new hires in the long run. 

Just as service industry workers are reconsidering the type of work they want, you have an opportunity to hire employees who represent your business well. Potential candidates will find solace in a very detailed job description because ultimately, it shows the values your company operates with. If you look for employees in a thorough, caring manner, it can be assumed that you operate this way in other areas of your business. 

Current staff are the best ambassadors — use rewards!

Your current employees can be the convincing factor that bring in amazing potential candidates. If they love their job, they’ll want to share it with others and surround themselves with like-minded co-workers. To show your appreciation, offer a sign-on bonus for those that bring in staff. To increase the probability that they bring in loyal, quality staff, offer another bonus after the new hire has been with you for a certain period of time! 

These are just a few tips to refresh the way you approach hiring and to hopefully break up your endless “how to hire staff” Google searches. Hopefully, your next job posting can be an exciting opportunity to imagine your ideal team and to pitch your business in it’s best light!