3 Clever Solutions to the Labor Shortage
Changes in Labor Management
As the pandemic winds down for summer, all kinds of businesses have had trouble hiring back who they laid off in 2020. Restaurants in particular feel the strain. Job openings rose by tens of thousands just since this year began, so managers that want to entice back hesitant workers need to find new solutions. Answers to the labor shortage come in unexpected places.
For starters, the most influential factor when choosing where to work will be whether or not they pay a living wage. Workers have been hit just as hard as businesses, financially. Expanded unemployment benefits that equal more than a full-time job just doesn’t add up. Therefore, some restaurants have made working there more appealing. Consider:
Pay bumps by several dollars an hour
Hourly bonuses for holidays, or the entire summer
Signing and referral bonuses, and then extra bonuses per quarter based on performance
Flexible schedules, and even make-your-own hours depending on the position
Find creative solutions that work for your business. Ultimately, workers just want adequate compensation and job satisfaction. If you can offer them that, they’re much more likely to come work for you over your competition.
Photo courtesy of eatOS
Effective New Workplaces
It’s not just about what you can offer them, but what kind of environment your restaurant cultivates. Good pay won’t overcome poor working conditions. Internal changes may be called for. For example, maybe you’re typically open 24/7. With limited workers, you might have to cut down availability so you can have a full staff when you are open.
For others, hire help by relaxing certain requirements. Perhaps implement an all-new pay structure that allows people without certain qualifications a chance for upwards growth. This is also an opportunity for them to train under their coworkers, and it shows them they can reach better paying positions with more responsibility. Just remember that everyone needs a living wage, even if they don’t have a masters degree.
Long-Term Foundations for Growth
This labor shortage is indicative of the change coming for the hospitality industry, and American businesses as a whole. It won’t be solved with a few months of better working conditions before things revert back to how they were before. When encouraging more applicants, consider what will have long-term effects on recruitment and retention. For example, good company culture goes a long way. When they work with friends and feel valued by employers, staff members are more likely to give the position their all.
Or maybe you provide benefits they can’t get elsewhere, like health insurance or childcare. Do you offer PTO so they can go get vaccinated? These things matter more than ever to potential workers, and their concerns aren’t going away. The labor shortage isn’t from a lack of people looking for jobs; it’s a simple matter of supply not meeting demand. What is your restaurant doing to sway the market in your favor?
If you need to cut down on labor costs and streamline operations while onboarding new workers, you need a smart Point of Sale system. The right restaurant technology makes running your business cheaper, easier and more effective than ever before.
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