The New Key Functions in Today's Hotel Human Resources Department

Hotel human resources has morphed and HR executives need to recognize these changes

By Suzanne McIntosh President, McIntosh Human Capital Management | March 25, 2018

If you have been employed within the hospitality business for any length of time, you may have seen your Human Resources department evolve from the "Personnel Department" to the "Department of Talent Acquisition". This office has evolved from a cost center, which was mostly compliance-based, focused on record keeping, workplace safety, salary management and employee grievances, to essential centers for talent engagement. Employees have gone from "resources" to "assets" and have become recognized as a valuable source of competitive advantage.

Our most successful hospitality companies understand that their talent acquisition, retention, employee engagement and reward, requires continuous innovation in order to remain competitive in attracting top talent. Our customer's guest experience expectations are met and exceeded by the talent we employ. Our Human Resources departments no longer just process employee paperwork and administer benefits. They are integral to our customer engagement and financial success.

This article will focus on several key areas that our Human Resource professionals, particularly as it relates to our Sales Talent, are now charged with in their roles. The key areas to ensure a key competitive advantage include:

  • innovative recruiting strategies
  • retention strategies, including compensation and incentive bonus plans
  • developing training and leadership development programs
  • redesigning work to enhance colleague involvement and engagement

Recruitment and Interviewing

Competition for high performing talent has never been so fierce. Attracting the best people to our organizations requires deploying strategies far beyond posting an internal job vacancy or Help Wanted ad.

Social media has expanded our reach significantly. Platforms like Linkedin and sites such as HCareers, allow us to present opportunities to a larger audience. Our employees can use their personal FaceBook pages to talk about their own great work environments and promote opportunities to join their team.

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Coming up in December 2018...

Hotel Law: New Administration - New Policies

In a business as large as a hotel and in a field as broad as the law, there are innumerable legal issues which affect every area of a hotel's operation. For a hotel, the primary legal focus includes their restaurant, bar, meeting, convention and spa areas of their business, as well as employee relations. Hotels are also expected to protect their guests from criminal harm and to ensure the confidentiality of their personal identity information. These are a few of the daily legal matters hotels are concerned with, but on a national scale, there are also a number of pressing issues that the industry at large must address. For example, with a new presidential administration, there could be new policies on minimum wage and overtime rules, and a revised standard for determining joint employer status. There could also be legal issues surrounding new immigration policies like the H-2B guest-worker program (used by some hotels and resorts for seasonal staffing), as well as the uncertain legal status of some employees who fall under the DACA program. There are also major legal implications surrounding the online gaming industry. With the growing popularity of internet gambling and daily fantasy sports betting, more traditional resort casinos are also seeking the legal right to offer online gambling. Finally, the legal status of home-sharing companies like Airbnb continues to make news. Local jurisdictions are still trying to determine how to regulate the short-term apartment rental market, and the outcome will have consequences for the hotel industry. The December issue of Hotel Business Review will examine these and other critical issues pertaining to hotel law and how some companies are adapting to them.