Real-life advice from a real-life recruiter

Archive for July, 2016

When looking to hire, being too narrow in your search could be limiting your success

According to Paul Wolfe, Sr. VP of HR at Indeed, he says one of the biggest mistakes in hiring is not having a diverse slate of candidates. “Think of diversity of age, experience, background, race and gender, all of which help bring diversity of thought,” Wolfe said. “[This] can make organizations more successful and keep organizations growing and progressing.”

Once you have identified your hiring need, make sure you are looking to interview many different types of people. Not only will this increase the hiring traffic in your restaurant, it will also make your restaurant more interesting to future team members. You will begin to attract better talent as you widen and hire new team members. You will also be surprised of what they can bring to the table. The better the hiring choices you make, the better your location will run.

A good diverse work staff will also radiate a good reputation. Customers notice everything, from a clean restroom to an amazing server. Don’t customers turn into employees? Also, your diverse team members will spread the word to friends and family, increasing your application flow. You never know where the next superstar is coming from.

You should not be searching for someone just like you or the rest of your team members. Don’t be afraid to bring in experience from another concept or someone that may challenge our company. Being open to options will also make you and your team grow and find ways to do something in another way.

Look outside the box. It can bring you a staffed restaurant, new ways of solving problems, more future applicants, a killer reputation and increased sales!

Using Scheduling as a Recruiting/Retention Tool

Let’s face it! We all know that the restaurant industry has some crazy shifts it needs to cover. In our case, Eat’n Park is open for breakfast, lunch, dinner and late evening. We even have some locations that are open 24 hours. We need to attract team members that have flexibility in their availability, but we, as managers, need to be consistent in scheduling all these hours.

According to an article written by Ron Ruggless from Nation’s Restaurant News, he states that unpredictable and inconsistent scheduling practices for team members affect not only retention, but the ability to recruit new workers. Some team member scheduling concerns included those previously mentioned and the dreaded “clopening” shifts. A clopen shift is when someone is scheduled to close, then open the restaurant the very next morning.

In a recent WorkJam survey (WorkJam is an employee relationship management platform), they found that 46% of restaurants reported frequently or sometimes being understaffed. Of those, 53% said it compromised the customer experience. Why? Most often when you find dissatisfied team members you will also find dissatisfied guests. This leads to higher staff turnover, poor customer service, less repeat guests and declining sales.

In addition, the survey also proved that 60% of team members said the most difficult part of a job search was finding positions that fit their schedules and that were close to home. Also, 26% of team members left their last job because of inconsistent schedules. However, 68% of managers said the most difficult part of scheduling was assigning shifts that took care of business need and staff availability.

Joshua Ostrega, COO for WorkJam said, “To maintain growth and minimize costs, businesses must quickly adopt more comprehensive systems to manage the employer-employee relationship. Managers need to realize that investing in better ways of hiring, scheduling and managing employees is an investment in the company’s bottom line.”

When you take a look at your own scheduling, ask yourself, “Do I use best practices when I produce a team member schedule?”

Here is a list of best practices of a great schedule:

  1. Post it on time and within enough time that team members can plan out their week. If schedules are posted a week or less in advance, frustrations is created for them.
  2. Keep scheduling consistent. Team members don’t want big changes week to week.
  3. Treat everyone fairly. Do not play favoritism.
  4. Make sure closes, opens, mid and overnight shifts flow from day to day. Avoid “Clopening.”
  5. Schedule your staff according to business need but accommodates team member availability. This is were flexibility come into play. Also, hiring the right person.

Scheduling is a very difficult science. It has to blend a myriad of details from hiring the right people, hiring the availability the business is dictating, posting it on time, good flow from shift to shift and being honest and fair. If we throw all the different ingredients into the scheduling pot, stir it up and create a fantastic schedule, you will be sure to keep your team members happy, your environment positive, guest happy and returning to do more business with you. I encourage you to take a good, long look at your team member scheduling practices and make any adjustment you think you need to make.


How to attract and keep Generation Z

We’ve spent the last month or so getting to know Generation Z. What did we learn? Well, we know they are more technological savvy than any generation out there. If the Millennials can toggle two devices, Gen Z can go between five! In addition to this, they have more information at their fingertips and they utilize that. This group will have an Entrepreneur look to them for years to come. We also learned that they like to sit in groups but yet work alone. Also, when given feedback, they like a comfortable space to hold a conversation. They also want a lot of input from their leaders. Gen Z will dictate the sales market and have Millennials and Gen X following along. They want the entire package; great product, great services, great prices, current technology and transparency from the company their doing business with. If they don’t get it on their first visit, oh well, their off to the next guy. Loyalty will have to be earned starting with a flawless first visit. Finally, we talked last week about blending all the generations together in the work force.

This week, we will close out this discussion on what we can do to retain this group once we hire them. In fact, we can use a lot of these ideas to attract them. After all, it’s what they are looking for.

According to Lisa Evans from Entrepreneur magazine, 17% of Gen Z versus 11% of Millennials said they wanted to start a business. With this generation having the access to a greater wealth of information than any behind them, no wonder why. How can we compete with this? Our managers need to provide opportunities for Gen Z to use these entrepreneurial skills. We already said to get them involved with problem solving and finding solutions to problems. Today’s manager will be better off to delegate and follow up rather do it all themselves. This generation will be looking elsewhere for employment if you don’t.

Lisa Evans has also found that Gen Z is less motivated by money than the Millennials. We will have to emphasize other factors, such as training and a career path, rather than dollar amounts. 34% of Gen Z are most motivated by opportunities for advancement while 23% love meaningful work. We will have to make sure we clearly let Gen Z know a career path and give them an opportunity to succeed. In addition, finding a mentor to give regular feedback is also important. This generation thrives on it.

And finally, while Millennials prefer to job hop (they expect to work for 5 companies in their career), Gen Z plans on working for 4 or fewer. This could lead us to believe we can retain them for a longer period of time. By providing opportunities, giving benefits of loyalty and letting them use their skills and knowledge, you could be an employer of choice for Generation Z.

I hope you have enjoyed our journey with Generation Z. I can’t wait to see what the next ten years will be with this exciting group of young people.