According to the National Restaurant Association’s State of the Industry Report 2022, operators are still more concerned about labor and employee retention than anything else, and it’s not particularly close. Given five options—recruiting and retaining employees, food costs, building sales, COVID-19, or labor costs—51 percent of operators said recruitment and retention was their biggest expected challenge in 2022. That was over double the next closest selection, which checked in at 22 percent.
Yes, employee recruitment and retention is a challenge that must be solved by brands aiming to be profitable into the future. Complicating recruitment, in particular, is that there are more options for job posting boards than ever before. As the restaurant industry has gravitated from a binder of resumes under the host stand to the digital world, it’s hard to know which sites are the most effective tools for employee recruitment. And how does one even go about identifying applicants that would be a good cultural fit?
“Hiring has been an issue for such a long time,” says Joshua Graves, solutions manager for Restaurant365 HIRE. “When I left the restaurant industry right before COVID-19 hit, I was using a combination of ZipRecruiter, Indeed, Craigslist, Facebook, college job board sites, and so many other places to find employees. That means that while there’s been this proliferation of recruitment sites, it’s made recruiting more complicated in some ways rather than less.”
Restaurant365’s HIRE platform is an application tracking solution (ATS) that exists within the company’s all-in-one cloud-based restaurant management solution. While Restaurant365 helps restaurant managers do everything from payroll, to accounting, to inventory, to scheduling, and more, HIRE has been coming in particularly handy for operators looking to recruit and retain employees at a time when that’s enormously difficult for the average brand. As an ATS, HIRE helps brands track employees from “hire to retire,” or in other words, it helps both recruit and retain employees.
Here’s how Restaurant365 HIRE ATS helps with recruitment: brands will be able to attract more employees by listing jobs on multiple career sites with one click. HIRE gives a price break on the posts, too, helping brands save both time and money in what was once a laborious and costly process. HIRE also creates a career page for a restaurant that helps brands describe their culture in order to make an authentic, personalized impression that might not come through via a Craigslist post, for example. Best of all, once a good applicant is identified, HIRE allows for instantaneous texting in order to schedule an interview as soon as possible.
“The whole industry is seeing a drastic diminishing in candidates,” Graves says. “And a lot of people point to wages, and yes, it’s absolutely partially about wages. The industry hasn’t historically paid their people enough. But it’s also about culture. That’s why I think the careers page is so helpful for brands: It’s where you get to tell applicants a bit about why this isn’t going to just be another industry job. It helps ensure you’re getting applicants that are actually a good fit, too, to people who have already bought into the culture of the place.”
As far as employee retention goes, HIRE becomes an onboarding solution once an employee is hired. It ensures the employee has filled out all necessary paperwork and been given necessary information before a first shift, allowing the employee to hit the ground running. This helps the employee build confidence on the job and more quickly feel like they are part of the company culture, therefore reducing turnover, while also ensuring management does not have to spend as much time shouldering the burdensome onboarding process.
“I think the best part of HIRE is that it’s two solutions-in-one,” Graves says. “If you go look at competitors, some ATS’s have recruitment but not onboarding, while others have onboarding but no recruitment. Ours overlap and are connected, and the employee feels that during their journey. What I’ve always loved is the people aspect of this business. HIRE is a great way to start a relationship and to build a foundation for that aspect that is so beautiful about the restaurant industry. That’s something I’m really passionate about and it’s why I’m so passionate about this solution.”
Learn more about Restaurant365’s payroll and HR solutions at the company’s website. See how they help over 28,000 restaurants hire, train, and retain key employees.