Increasing ROI Through These 4 Essential Hotel Recruiting Techniques

By Zoe Connolly Co-Founder & Managing Director, Hospitality Spotlight | August 26, 2018

In the hotel management space, the role of 'recruiting' seems to fall somewhere between dentist appointments and eating vegetables. These are necessary evils. However, leadership that places an emphasis on proper recruiting will see tremendous ROI, in the form of stronger employees coming on and less time with open positions.

Define the Precise Role

The first step to finding the right candidate is having a clear idea of what the role entails, and effectively communicating the role in the job description. This document should have a clear and simple explanation of what the job entails, including typical day-to-day tasks and any 'must have' requirements. It should also list out a few 'nice to have' requirements. These are qualifications or experiences that can help separate a candidate, but might not be a deal breaker in the hiring process. The job description shouldn't identify which items are 'must have' vs 'nice to have,' that information should be kept internally.

There is another component of a job description that can help a hiring manager cast a wider net in the right talent pool, specific information about the company or property. Company culture is growing in importance in terms of job satisfaction and can serve as a key differentiator when trying to attract top candidates. The company information in the job description should go further than information that can be found on the company's website. This is not an opportunity to copy and paste the 'about us,' it's a chance to show premium candidates why they should want to work for a property or company. Unique perks and culture differentiation should all be a part of this discussion.

Address the Right Candidates

Almost as important as the job description is the location of where it is found. Recruiting and marketing share a tremendous number of skills, and the ability to effectively target a specific audience is one of them. Recruiters should consider who their ideal candidate might be, and then advertise/post roles in the online destinations where those individuals spend the most time.

  • Alternative job sites- This might mean venturing outside of typical job boards (like Monster) and social media (like LinkedIn) to find the right candidate. A hotel chain looking to find a developer to improve and maintain their PMS might be more likely to find a perfect candidate on DZone.com than a traditional career site.
  • Social media- On the social media side, some properties break their HR/Corporate information into separate accounts. For those that keep one single presence on a site like Twitter, it can be helpful to recruiters to promote open roles. While it's often guests that visit a hotel's website, there's no rule that says a guest can't convert to an employee (especially if the guest had a great experience and wants to be part of it).
  • Referrals- One other way to attract great talent is referrals. It's advisable to create an internal company-wide referral program, and to promote it regularly to employees. Hotel leaders can ask team members to refer former colleagues and professional friends. There are a few inherent benefits for referral programs. For employees, being able to work with people they like is a great incentive on its own. Hotels should consider adding a monetary benefit/referral fee, in order to make it a more obvious choice for employees.
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Coming up in June 2019...

Sales & Marketing: Selling Experiences

There are innumerable strategies that Hotel Sales and Marketing Directors employ to find, engage and entice guests to their property, and those strategies are constantly evolving. A breakthrough technology, pioneering platform, or even a simple algorithm update can cause new trends to emerge and upend the best laid plans. Sales and marketing departments must remain agile so they can adapt to the ever changing digital landscape. As an example, the popularity of virtual reality is on the rise, as 360 interactive technologies become more mainstream. Chatbots and artificial intelligence are also poised to become the next big things, as they take guest personalization to a whole new level. But one sales and marketing trend that is currently resulting in major benefits for hotels is experiential marketing - the effort to deliver an experience to potential guests. Mainly this is accomplished through the creative use of video and images, and by utilizing what has become known as User Generated Content. By sharing actual personal content (videos and pictures) from satisfied guests who have experienced the delights of a property, prospective guests can more easily imagine themselves having the same experience. Similarly, Hotel Generated Content is equally important. Hotels are more than beds and effective video presentations can tell a compelling story - a story about what makes the hotel appealing and unique. A video walk-through of rooms is essential, as are video tours in different areas of a hotel. The goal is to highlight what makes the property exceptional, but also to show real people having real fun - an experience that prospective guests can have too. The June Hotel Business Review will report on some of these issues and strategies, and examine how some sales and marketing professionals are integrating them into their operations.