Steve Beagelman, CEO and Founder of SMB Franchise Advisors, on how companies can deal with staff shortages and move forward.
The big layoff. The Great Recast. The big stop. All terms to describe the trend in the pandemic era where employees are leaving their jobs en masse. It affects industries across the labor market, especially in the hospitality industry, and it is a trend that shows no signs of slowing down.
According to an recent global research Unveiled at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, one in five workers said they would be “very or very likely to change employers” in the next year.
For many franchisees, the timing of this trend can feel extremely unfair. You navigated your business through the pandemic and came out the other side, only to encounter the next big obstacle. If you survived the challenges of the past years, you can survive this one too.
While there is no one-size-fits-all solution, there are many things brands can do to ensure success. Now might be the perfect time to make a few changes to your business model based on what employees value.
Here are a few practical ways to help your brand survive the Great Resignation (and beyond).
Rent for the future
First, even if your business is in good shape now, it’s essential to focus on hiring for the future rather than hiring for the present. You may be wary of hiring new employees given the uncertainty of recent years, but you need to see that past and think long term. Start building your workforce now so you don’t get caught short of staff. This should help reduce churn and keep your stress level to a minimum.
Empower your current team
While filling open positions is crucial, retaining the employees you already have is even more important. You can navigate the tight job market by counting on your current team to help more, but make it worth it. If they go the extra mile, make them feel valued and connected to the success of the organization by recognizing their hard work and rewarding them when possible. This may mean opening up new opportunities, moving up their promotion schedule, offering additional benefits or benefits, or investing in their future with training programs. If you take care of your good people, chances are they will take care of you too.
Another way to rely on good employees is to ask them to bring in other good people. You can offer them extra incentives for bringing in talent. That could be a financial bonus, extra paid time off, gift cards to their favorite restaurant or another benefit.
Offer a flexible work environment
Depending on their operations, some brands are better suited to remote working than others. Allowing remote working makes it easier to recruit new employees. If you’re willing to think outside the box and have the technology to back it up, chances are you can come up with a solution to make it work. For example, if you have a business with a call center component, such as a home service company that repairs things, you can allow call center operators to work from home instead of coming to the office every day. Likewise, if you have a junk removal company with three administrators who route drivers and take calls, you can give them the option to work from home.
Reconsider your recruitment
Sticking a sign in the window is not enough. While you still need to promote hiring, get creative with your hiring strategies. Post your opening anywhere online. You can take advantage of social media platforms like LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and even TikTok to spread the word. Posting on multiple social channels is especially important if you are Millennials and Gen. Trying to recruit Z workers. You may also consider reaching out to candidates via social media or SMS. Don’t just try to post online, but also try to connect with local schools and colleges.
Think about your messages
Use the correct phrase to convey who you are looking for. Use “Join our Team” or “Now Hiring” to indicate that you are building a team instead of “Help Wanted” or “We Are Understaffed Please Apply”, indicating that you are unable to provide customers with adequate service.
There’s no denying that adopting new business practices can be challenging. With the highly competitive job market, companies must do everything they can to keep their good employees and hire new ones. By understanding what employees value most today and then updating your business strategies to fit those values, you can ensure your company survives the Great Layoff (and beyond).