How to attract and retain food and hospitality super stars

It’s no secret that the tourism industry is booming in both Australia and New Zealand. This coupled with the fact that people are dining out more regularly has created the perfect storm for the food and hospitality industry. On one hand more patrons is a huge opportunity to build your business. On the other hand it is one of the biggest challenges facing business owners in 2017.

However welcome the increase in business might be, it has resulted in a serious shortage of trained staff in Australia and New Zealand. Chefs and bakers are on the skills shortage lists in both countries. Competition to attract and retain the best staff has ramped up across the industry. As you know, you can’t run a successful business without the right staff so we’ve put together a list of our top tips to help you secure the best staff.

4 top tips for how you can recruit and retain the best in the industry:

1. Dedicate time to the recruitment process
Don’t just think about talent when recruiting new staff. Spend some time identifying the candidates with real sticking power too. If you’re serious about reducing staff turnover and securing someone for the long haul it’s worth investing some time in the recruitment process. You could do this yourself by advertising online, via social media or searching LinkedIn for potential candidates, or you could enlist the help of a recruitment agency. It’s also worth considering offering slightly more salary to keep ahead of your competition. Make sure you attend the interview yourself so you can get a feel for whether the candidate is really passionate about the job or whether they’re just filling in time before they go back to uni or using hospitality as a stepping stone rather than a career path.

2. Provide a real career path for your staff
The best talent want to know that your business is going to offer them a real opportunity, especially if the position is lower level. People want to see how your business will help them progress their career. If you’ve got staff who have worked their way up the ranks tell candidates their story, or better yet, get them to share their story with candidates themselves. A lot of people will take a low level position if they can see where it could take them in the future.

3. Promote the benefits of working for you
It’s no secret that working in food and hospitality involves accepting long, unsocial hours, a busy working environment and often lower than average pay. But, there are a lot of other great things about working in a fast-paced, dynamic, exciting industry. Identify what those things are in your business and start promoting them in every interaction with potential staff. Don’t forget, your competitors will be doing the same so have a really hard think about how the benefits of working for you are going to make your business stand out from the rest.

4. Start talking to your local food and hospitality training provider
The saying ‘it’s not what you know but who you know’ has never been more accurate. Making contacts with the staff at your local training provider is key to securing the best up and coming talent. You could get a group of students into the kitchen for the day, head into their training kitchen to do a demonstration, get yourself on the faculty advisory board or whatever else you can dream up. Whatever method you choose, get your name out there. You’ll find that staff start sending their best and brightest your way.

SKOPE has been supporting the food and hospitality for the last 50 years. If you’re looking for premium quality, reliable commercial refrigeration with superior warranty protection you can depend on SKOPE. Visit our website for more information.

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