How Going to Online Premier in Response to COVID-19 Changed Talent Acquisition in the Restaurant Industry | Modern restaurant management


While the combination of vaccine rollout and additional fiscal stimulus has allowed the restaurant industry to look forward to more encouraging market conditions going forward, there is still a lot of work ahead for restaurants. and the hospitality industry must do in 2021 to make up for the dramatic job shortage caused by lockdowns and stay-at-home orders.

How will restaurants compete for the level of talent needed to fully recover in 2021?

There are also political and economic factors at play as the restaurant industry heads for recovery in 2021, with a proposed minimum wage of $ 15 an hour making its way through the Legislature. While the bottom line implications such as labor and wage increases will have on restaurants and businesses are still debated, the reality is that any disruption in cost structures introduces a level of uncertainty in the business. business environment.

However, it is not all gloomy for the hospitality industry. According to Clarke Caniff Strategic Search’s Hospitality Jobs Report 2021, the boutique executive search firm specializing in the retail, hospitality and service industries predicts that “the adoption of technological advancements and the propensity of young people to want to travel means that tourism, travel and the hotel industry as a whole will rebound strongly. ”

But what does all this mean for hiring and recruiting in the restaurant and hospitality industry in the near future? And how will restaurants compete for the level of talent needed to make a full recovery in 2021? The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated some trends in the restaurant industry that many establishments will need to adapt to, for example, digitization, increased demand for off-premises delivery and catering, and increased competitiveness of the hospitality industry. talent acquisition.

Shifting to Online Priority Means Changes in Talent Infrastructure

As the company has changed its mindset and adapted to a world where it is more convenient to order take-out or deliveries rather than eating in restaurants, establishments that are changing their talent infrastructure from way to include more digitally savvy and tech-savvy staff, who can capitalize on the internet switch first, will fare better than those who do not in the post-COVID environment. Many restaurants have realized the importance of a strong digital presence and a robust online-first approach to serving customers and will need to hire team members who can help establish a competitive advantage on this front.

This shift in recruiting mindset will result in a significant shift in the type of talent that restaurants and hospitality establishments rely on. In some cases, this trend opens up opportunities for people who previously had no access to the restaurant and hospitality industry due to their skills.

In fact, according to, “Food and beverage outlets are the main component of the overall restaurant and restaurant industry, which, prior to the coronavirus outbreak, employed 12 million over a year. total workforce of 15.6 million restaurants and food services ”. Therefore, changing the composition of the restaurant industry workforce will be an interesting trend to watch for the foreseeable future.

Changing the Mindset About Benefits and Safety Requirements

The COVID-19 pandemic has also catalyzed conversations about employee expectations for workplace safety, which is a particularly relevant topic when reviewing a restaurant. Without the luxury of setting up a home work system for their employees, restaurateurs have had to take particularly strong measures to ensure the safety and health of their employees. Nonetheless, the reality of face-to-face interaction with customers means that restaurants and hospitality establishments will need to increase benefits and expectations during the recruiting process to ensure that the restaurant adds value. reception area is still an attractive sector of the economy in which to work. .

“Talent acquisition and hiring restaurant managers will need to prepare for questions relating to their establishment’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Kristen Fowler, Practice Lead at Clarke Caniff Strategic Search . “Candidates will want to know what steps the institution they are interviewing has taken to protect their staff throughout the pandemic, as this will help them make better decisions about where to invest their human capital.”

Investment in the employer’s brand image as a strategic differentiator

In a world where so many consumers will order their food for delivery on their phones, in the most convenient restaurant with the best reviews online, the space to differentiate through an on-site vibe and true customer service through interaction in person becomes much more restricted. In turn, restaurants and hotels will have to differentiate themselves through a different channel. If customers adopt a less branded mindset, the reality is that restaurants with the best food and the best reviews will win. And how does an establishment get the best reviews? By offering the best food or product. And how does an establishment create the best food or product? By hiring the best chefs and talents available.

Restaurants will need to be competitive in terms of human capital in order to take advantage of the changing consumer mindset.

Restaurants in hotel establishments will need to be competitive in terms of human capital in order to take advantage of the changing consumer mindset as we approach the final stages of 2021 and beyond. this will require an investment in the employer’s branding – how attractive the establishment is as a place to work. It is only by investing in the development of a brand of top talent that restaurants and hotels will be able to improve their tenure, retain the best employees for longer, and have the opportunity to invest in the future of the company based on its human capital base.

“Companies are just a collection of talented individuals who create quality products or services. The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the restaurant industry’s transition to digitization, which has meant that the industry as a whole has had to rely more on the capabilities of its workforce ”, says Victoria Tsai, marketing manager at Daggerfinn, a strategic employer. brand strategy consulting. “We should start to see more establishments focusing on the employee experience as a point of differentiation.”

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