Sustainable Hotel Careers: 5 Tips for Strengthening Your Workforce
By Ron Mitchell CEO & Founder, Virgil Careers | May 10, 2020
As we begin decade and assess the state of the industry, hotel and hospitality employers are facing a growing problem when it comes to filling their workforce. They have a staggeringly high turnover rate of 73.8% and the highest month over month job growth of any industry, with a new job being added every 2.5 seconds. The industry is growing too quickly to keep up with, and employers are sifting through a narrowing pool of job seekers to find those with very specific skills to fill positions in a demanding, fast-paced environment.
So how can hotel employers regain confidence in their workforce and customer service ranks? By refocusing their recruitment and retention efforts in a way that personally connects with the job seeker they want to reach.
The Problem: Information Overload, Increased Turnover & Suffering Customer Service
When I graduated from Harvard 25 years ago, I went to work in investment banking because that's what everybody told me I should do. Back then, before the 24/7 connection to internet and apps on mobile devices, there was very limited transparency or access to information about available job opportunities. Consequently, students and entry-level candidates were severely underprepared for the job search process. In addition, there was virtually no dialogue around critical factors that influence the employment decisions of today's generation, such as corporate values, growth opportunities and flexible work arrangements.
Today, access to information that can help job seekers identify the "right" opportunity is a keystroke away. The largest technology companies in the world, including Google, Facebook and Microsoft, provide one-click access to countless employers and a seemingly unlimited amount of information on each one. These platforms also enable increased transparency and social conversation around a company's employment brand, creating the potential for damaging negative exposure.
And this isn't just a human resource cost problem, although that is a top of mind issue for any employer facing a turnover challenge. For an industry that is so customer centric, this lack of consistent labor can result in a poor internal culture - which perpetuates the retention problem - and also present a lack of order to customers who are looking for a familiar friendly face behind a hotel front desk or confident, well-informed answers from a concierge, valet or bartender.