5 Tips for Staffing During the Holiday Season

When the holiday season hits, will you feel confident that you have the staff to deliver a service that matches the rest of your event? Hospitality managers can spend up to 40% of their time managing HR/payroll-related tasks, which takes away valuable time and resources from other important things like — running the business! During the holiday season, we know that you don’t have time for this.

Here are some tried and true ways to help you survive the holiday madness to keep you focused on what you love doing most.

1. Schedule Staff Early

We’ve all been there — that situation where there is an event coming up and you forgot to schedule enough staff for your upcoming event. Panic mode sets in and you spend hours texting and calling through your Rolodex of people who are booked, busy or out of town for the holidays. You quickly realize that you should have been recruiting new staff months ago.

Schedule your core team immediately for the events that you have locked in. It’s currently a job hunters market, so there are many options to pick up work. Make sure you’re scheduling them with plenty of time to spare so that you can lock in your top roster.

PRO TIP: Instead of tracking on spreadsheets, use a scheduling tool like Instawork Scheduler available on desktop and mobile app.

2. Build your Rolodex of Temp Staffing Partners

Just as your financial advisor recommends you diversify your investment portfolio, so should you when it comes to finding temp staff, whether it be with agencies, Craigslist, or job boards. The good news is that there are alternatives that have been cropping up, changing the business model that better serves caterers and workers. Companies like Instawork offer the same positions as most temp staffing agencies for both front-of-house and back-of-house needs but because they pass on more of the wages to the worker, they attract experienced hospitality professionals looking to earn more during this busy season.

Ready to give it a try? Sign up for Instawork at www.instawork.com/business and use promo code ‘staffnow’ to receive your first shift free (Up to $100 off your first booking) active now until December 31st, 2019.

3. Set Expectations Upfront

We know that schedules can get crazy, especially during the holidays, so it’s even more crucial to communicate what your staff’s duties will be prior to the event taking place. A few details to communicate are:

  • Location and where to meet
  • Parking instructions
  • Uniform expectations
  • Length of shift

At the end of the day, your staff is essentially a walking billboard of your business. A happy and stress-free staff will help you put your best foot forward with new and existing clients and ultimately set your company up for success.

4. Reward Your Strong Performers

Make your employees feel valued so they continue to do incredible work for your company. The obvious reward for a strong performer is a monetary increase or bonus, however, there are other ways to make your employees feel both engaged and appreciated without breaking the bank.

  • Ask for feedback: Don’t hesitate to ask your employees for feedback. Asking for feedback will not only make your business better but it will also make employees feel valued and important.
  • Assign Event Leads: Utilize your strongest performers by making them event captains or shift leads. Not only does this give them additional responsibility but it will help you to scale your staffing program long term.
  • Understand their aspirations: Find out their goals and then give them tips on how to succeed. For example, do you have a server who wants to become a bartender? During the off-season, invest in their growth and carve out time in your schedule to coach and train them toward their goals. This will make them feel valued and loyal to your business long term.

5. Always Overstaff

Life happens and so do last-minute call-outs. Expect the unexpected by always overstaffing for your events. It’s easier to cut staff early than trying to find people to work last minute. The goal is to feel prepared leading into any event big or small.

If you do find yourself in a bind, apps like Instawork can help. They’ve built a local network of professionals, so you can book professionals up to two hours before a shift begins. Sign up for free to browse Pros and see how it works.