Editorial Board   

Ms. Flores

Kathleen Chiechi Flores

Executive Vice President, Human Resources, Wyndham Hotel Group

Kathleen Chiechi Flores was appointed executive vice president of human resources in January 2009 and oversees the development and execution of Wyndham Hotel Group's global human resources strategies, including the talent selection, talent management, workforce planning and administration of more than 4,000 employees around the world. She is also responsible for the company's business continuity planning and global communications functions, including employee communications public relations and franchisee communications. A seasoned veteran of the profession with nearly 20 years of progressive human resources experience, Ms. Flores brings to the company a diverse background spanning multiple industries and organizations. Prior to joining Wyndham Hotel Group, she was chief administrative officer for Houston-based WhiteFence, where she oversaw the company's legal and human resources teams and was responsible for risk management, compensation and benefits, talent acquisition, training and development and organizational effectiveness. Under her leadership, the company substantially increased its recruitment efforts and more than doubled its critical employee headcount. In doing so, WhiteFence was able to more effectively execute upon its initiatives and increase revenues from $8 million in 2006 to $18 million in 2007. Prior to WhiteFence, Ms. Flores served in a variety of executive and senior level human resources roles, working for companies including ZipRealty and Kaplan Inc. Ms. Flores is a certified senior professional in human resources and holds a bachelor's degree in economics from the University of California Irvine as well as a master's degree in education from the University of San Francisco. She is based in Wyndham Hotel Group's Parsippany, N.J. offices.

Ms. Flores can be contacted at 973-753-6590 or kathleen.flores@wyn.com

Coming up in March 2020...

Human Resources: Confronting a Labor Shortage

With the unemployment rate at its lowest level in decades (3.7%), what has always been a perennial problem for human resource professionals - labor shortage - is now reaching acute levels of concern. It is getting harder to find and recruit qualified applicants. Even finding candidates with the skills to succeed in entry-level positions has become an issue. In addition, employee turnover rates remain extremely high in the hotel industry. As a result of these problems, hotel HR managers are having to rethink their recruitment strategies in order to hire the right talent for the right job. First, hotels have been forced to raise their wages and offer other appealing perks, as a way to attract qualified candidates. Secondly, HR managers are reassessing their interviewing techniques, focusing less on the answers they receive to questions and more on observable behavior. Part of this process includes role-playing during the interview, so that the recruiter can gauge how a candidate works through specific problems and interacts with other team members. Additionally, some HR managers are also creating internal talent pools as a way to address labor shortages. Instead of utilizing department resources to find new hires with specific skills for needed positions, hotels are cultivating talent pools internally and preparing their employees to assume leadership roles whenever the time comes. They are also placing greater emphasis on a company culture that is more performance-based, as a way to curb employee turnover, increase employee satisfaction, and assure higher levels of customer service. Finally, recognizing the importance of employee retention as a way to lessen the impact of a tight labor market, some HR managers are instituting generous reward programs in order to retain their top performers. The March Hotel Business Review will explore what some HR professionals are doing to address these and other issues in their departments.