According to the National Restaurant Association, despite the steady gains in recent months, eating and drinking places remained 824,000 jobs – or 6.7% – below their February 2020 pre-pandemic employment peak. If you’re among the operators who are perplexed by how to hire staff for a restaurant during a restaurant staff shortage, one solution may be to develop a hiring process. Almost every other aspect of your restaurant business is process driven, but many restaurant operators do not have a formal process for hiring employees.
Having a hiring process in place that all hiring managers must follow is imperative but is especially so during a hiring crisis. In the restaurant industry, steps for hiring employees might include the following, but it’s up to your restaurant group to put a structure in place. See how you would answer the questions about these steps in the hiring process.
- Review: Will only the hiring manager review applications, or will you have a hiring team review them?
- Assessments: Will you require assessments, and if so, what questions are important to your restaurant group to filter for the best candidates.
- Phone screen: Will you require a phone screen before the in-person interview? Will the hiring manager conduct the phone screen, or will this responsibility be held by an HR team member or someone else?
- In-person interview: Do your interview questions help determine if the applicant is a good culture fit? Have you set up assessments and phone screens in advance to minimize no shows?
- References: How many references do you require? Must references be from former employers? What references will you require for applicants who are seeking their first jobs?
- Offer: Does your offer letter include everything it needs to be effective, including job title, name, and title of supervisor, start date, full-time or part-time employment, duties, pay rate, the potential for tips or other compensation, company policies, benefits if any, contingencies (e.g., contingent on clearing a background check), etc.?
- Background check: Will you require a background check, and if so, for all positions or selected positions?
- Hire: What steps do you take to make it official?
- Onboard: Does your onboarding process have retention in mind? Will the onboarding process make your new employee feel like a valued member of the team?
Optimize your job postings. One of the first steps in your hiring process is the job posting. Ensure that your job postings are reaching and attracting the right candidates, and that they are optimized for job boards.
Create a professional career page. You run a dive bar. You’ve got regulars. They love what you do. One of those regulars is your perfect bartender because your regulars are already bought in. Your goal then is to get that career page in front of as many people as possible. So, if a customer needs a job, he or she knows where to go. One way to do that is with QR codes set on the tables that hyperlink to your career page.
Use pre-screen questions and assessments when hiring restaurant staff. While you want to attract as many applicants as possible to increase the chances that you’ll find the right candidates among the pool, it’s important to weed out the candidates that are not a fit for your restaurant. You can do that with prescreen questions and assessments.
Use an applicant tracking system for hiring restaurant staff. An applicant tracking system (ATS) adds efficiency to your hiring process. An ATS can be used to collect candidate data, automatically track applicant progress, and share information securely across an organization.
We’re changing the way restaurants, bars, hotels, breweries, and cafés hire. Unlike generic job sites, JOTF was created for restaurant people, by restaurant people. JOTF lives online at JOBSONTHEFLY.COM