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How to Hire and Train Your Hospitality Staff

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Hiring good staff is one of the most important responsibilities a hospitality manager will have. It’s also one of the most difficult.

Customers are at the heart of any hospitality business, so it’s important to employ staff who respect their customers and have superb interpersonal and service skills.

Good staff are enough to turn an average restaurant or café into a remarkable one. So we asked the owners of two successful hospitality businesses to give us their best tips and advice on how to hire and train staff.

Below, Baba Sus’ Daniel Liao and The Lincoln’s Iain Ling offer their top tips for finding great staff and training them up as quickly as possible.

How to find good staff

Owner of the Melbourne pub The Lincoln, Iain Ling knows that good customer services is vital to a business. When looking for staff, he hedges his bets by using a variety of online sources, with different results.

“We find no one has really got a great one-stop-shop for hospitality recruitment yet,” he says.

But if he needs to bring in fresh blood, he recommends Seek as a great way to find unknown talented staff. Meanwhile, Daniel Liao, of the Melbourne café Baba Sus, recommends using Skill’d.

“I find that Skill’d has worked for me on several occasions, because it allows the employer to look at people’s profiles and approach them instead,” he says.

Both Ling and Liao also acknowledge social media’s role in attracting staff, with Ling saying it’s a “good way of spreading the word that you are looking to recruit”.

But Ling also says much of your recruitment success comes from how you treat your staff.

“Recruitment starts with good in-house practices. If you have good staff retention and goodwill towards the business, you’ll find that it’s a lot easier to hire when people do leave,” he says.

Important traits for new staff

When hiring staff, Ling says he looks for positivity and a good attitude in potential employees.

“You can teach a lot of things, but those two are essential for making a good impression on your guests, which, at the end of the day, is the result we all work towards,” he says.

Meanwhile, Liao recommends looking for reliable, punctual and a proactive new staff members.

Tactics from the pros for training staff

At The Lincoln, Ling says it’s important to acknowledge that staff will come to your business with varying degrees of experience.

“It’s important to create a training strategy that is more personalised so they develop at a speed that suits everyone,” he advises.

Ling’s top tip for staff training is to take your time and have patience: “Don’t expect people to know everything straight away.”

Liao says Baba Sus takes advantage of the combined knowledge of their more experienced staff, by having new staff pair up with more senior employees. They also have a checklist of training procedures.

He suggests giving new staff little assistance so they are forced to think on their feet and learn and remember the procedures faster.

Learn more about how to start up your dream business by checking out our other resources on the Impos blog today!