Recruitment Marketing Trends Shaping the Hospitality Industry
To tap into the latest developments and trends in hospitality recruitment, hiring, and employee retention, we reflected on some of the most innovative conversations we heard around these topics at the largest hospitality show in North America, HX: The Hotel Experience, which took place at the end of 2018. Recruitment marketing was a hot buttun issue among hotels and thought leaders in the industry, as rising labor costs, immigration issues, a tight labor market, and high turnover affect hospitality employers large and small.
Here's a roundup of some of the most important recruitment takeaways we heard from hotel leaders as they look to make successful hires and improve retention rates in 2019:
Look for talent outside of the box. Rigid criteria requiring candidates to have exacting industry experience only serves to limit the talent pool. Instead, Michael Dominguez, MGM Resorts International’s chief sales office, told the audience attending the show’s general session Hospitality Reimagined: The Future Guest Experience that “hiring people from outside of the hotel industry brings new disciplines and science to our industry.” Similarly, Meredith Belman, managing director of management consulting firm Roots Inc. suggested casting a wide net in the session Boutique Touches Drive Brand Success. “Go to the retail and restaurant industries or any customer-facing industry,” she said.
Diversity is the face of today and tomorrow. According to HCareers CEO Ron Mitchell, African Americans are 20 percent more likely to have an interest in working in the industry and Latinos, 10 percent more likely. “It’s an organizational imperative for hospitality to embrace diversity,” he said, speaking on the panel Redefining Today’s Hospitality Workforce and Cultivating Tomorrow’s Team. “In hospitality, guests want diversity in their experience and we’re a service industry. The hospitality businesses that are the first to deliver on that demand will make a lot of money.”
Present advancement opportunities as part of the package. Today’s workforce isn’t looking for a job; they want a career. Assurances that success in their role can lead to greater opportunities within the organization are a large part of what motivates them. Elizabeth Redhead, a DePaul University student speaking on the panel Hospitality Insights from Our Future Leaders: The College Student Perspective put it succinctly when she said “we want the ability to move up and we want to know that there’s room to grow in whatever job we’re doing.”
Incorporate technology into the workplace. Redhead also suggested that employers use technology – not to replace the human aspect of hospitality service – but to enable employees to work smarter, not harder. “Bringing technology to the employee experience will make their jobs easier and give them more time to do things like volunteering so that they can become more passionate about their jobs,” she said.
Rethink the recruitment and hiring processes. With the U.S. unemployment rate at record lows, it’s a buyer’s market. The opportunities for job seekers are broad while employers have a narrower talent pool from which to choose. So potential candidates can be selective and the hiring process can be part of the decision making process. So employers would do well to consider it an experience in the same way they think about the guest experience. On the panel Hiring, Retaining and Creating Hospitality Culture, Jonathan Moldenhauer, director of human resources at NoHo Hospitality Group explained that new hires a solving a problem by filling an employer’s need. “We need to invite them into our culture and win them over,” he said.
Take you candidate search to the next level. HCareers 2.0 will roll out in 2019 when recruiters will have access to new features and tools, including: custom job postings; data-driven insights; a branding experience where properties, employees and culture can be showcased in a multi-media format; an intuitive candidate database; and customizable job postings and promotions as well as enhanced job boosters.