By Janine Roberts, National Executive: Hospitality
The approaching festive season is traditionally a busy one for many industries. While many corporates, factories, educational institutions and practices shut down over this time, industries such as hospitality and retail consider it their busiest time of the year.
The hospitality and tourism industry is one of the few sectors showing positive growth in South Africa, with predicted revenue increases of more than seven percent over the next 3 years. It’s a good industry to be in, and there is no scarcity of positions waiting to be filled – particularly during peak season.
During this time, it becomes critical for these businesses to supplement their staff complement, hiring additional staff to ensure that customers are serviced and their needs met. However, hotels, restaurants, casinos and other tourism-driven businesses face the massive task of sourcing the right staff when they are already so busy. For workers who specialise in tourism and hospitality, from waiters and chefs to croupiers and travel agents, the market is wide open but competition is fierce and finding work can be a challenge.
This is where Temporary Employment Service (TES) providers have the solution, providing organisations with skilled professionals to answer their need while removing the hassle of hiring, training and management of the human resources aspect. TES providers also offer workers their best chance of finding employment during peak season, when everyone is vying for jobs.
Though typically associated with December and April holidays, especially for the hospitality and retail industries, seasonal challenges affect many different industries at different times of the year. Conversely, these industries also experience off-peak seasons, often resorting to a skeleton staff to maintain operations without entirely shutting down – although some do.
While sourcing skilled staff during peak season can be a challenge, perhaps even more taxing – and budget constricting – is having to maintain payroll and cover staff costs when business is quiet. It’s hard to pay staff when there is no money coming in and many businesses often operate at a loss during these times.
How TES providers help
During peak seasons, businesses find themselves looking to supplement their staff with temporary employees, however they need to be capable, reliable, trustworthy and competent. On top of the challenge of sourcing such individuals in a competitive environment, businesses also face the mammoth task of interviewing candidates, doing background checks, verifying references and, when the right candidates have been identified, training them – all immensely time-consuming and costly processes.
TES providers step into the breach, undertaking the entire hiring process on behalf of the business. TES providers take into account the unique requirements of each business, elevating their workforce profile, capability and calibre through appointments, training interventions and employee benefits. Reputable TES providers stay up to date with the latest market trends as well as taking into account each business’s unique ambiance, style and ambitions, training and mentoring teams accordingly. They also oversee the entire human resources function so that their clients can focus on their core business and not have to worry about things like registering temporary employees for tax benefits.
Businesses can rely upon TES providers for consistency, knowing that even if their staff requirement is last minute and dire, a TES provider will have the right solution.
Businesses that experience off-peak periods can also benefit from TES providers’ services. Industries that have frequent or extended off-peak seasons, such as hotels (especially those without conference facilities or who are located in typical holiday regions such as coastal towns), often suffer the consequences of retaining staff when they don’t really need them.
In such cases, TES providers answer the fluctuating demands of the hospitality and tourism industry, so businesses always have the right number of staff they require, when they require them. For businesses, this makes financial sense and also means they don’t need to lay off staff when business is quiet and there are benefits for the staff too.
Being a temporary staffer
For those individuals who work in the hospitality and retail industry, finding consistent work can be trying, especially during off-peak seasons, however they are in large demand during peak seasons.
TES providers, however, know when various industries require staff – peak seasons vary for different types of businesses in different areas. For example, most hotels boom during holiday season, however some hotels experience peak seasons during the spring and summer when weddings are popular, or during the months that surround common financial year ends for business, when conferences and team buildings are frequent.
Hospitality and retail staff are able to leverage this knowledge, allowing the TES provider to source work for them and move them where their services are most required at any given time. This gives them more consistent work, and better chances of finding employment during “common” off-peak times, too.
TES providers give businesses the flexibility to access competent staff on demand and the ability to focus on their core business without the added demands of human resources, while giving industry professionals the benefit of more stable and available work. It’s a win-win.