Hiring remains a significant challenge for the restaurant industry. According to the National Restaurant Association, 70 percent of operators report not having enough employees to meet customer demand, and three out of four say they will commit more resources to employee recruitment and retention.
Hiring is difficult enough. There’s no need to make it harder by creating barriers to applying. Hourly hiring is traditionally a complicated process – requiring applicants to create accounts, navigate clunky job websites, and fill out paperwork. The time-consuming and tedious process is driving away good candidates.
People want a simple, straightforward process to getting hired. It’s time for companies to deliver.
Create a Mobile Application Experience
Eliminate the extra steps and meet candidates where they are. These days, you’ll find them on their phones: Pew Research reports 84 percent of Americans own a smartphone. This technology opens up an easy path to connect with potential employees.
You must be thorough in creating a frictionless experience from start to finish, otherwise you aren’t really simplifying things. For example, if you plan to use a QR code, don’t have the code send the candidate to your usual hiring site to fill out more forms. Guide them to something more uncomplicated.
Gen Z, the target demographic for the restaurant industry, prefers to communicate via text. Use that to your advantage by employing text to apply software. You can use a simple code, such as “HIREME” or a QR code to direct the applicant to the text to apply experience. Place the codes anywhere your target audience may be, like restaurants, stores, or social media.
After engaging with the text, candidates answer a few questions to ensure they’re qualified. Within minutes, the conversational AI books the interview. By minimizing the waiting time, you eliminate the chance for competitors to get to the candidate first and keep the candidate engaged at their peak point of interest. The restaurants with the lowest ghosting and dropoff rates schedule instantly and interview within 48 hours.
It’s one simple step, completed wherever applicants are, with an immediate response. More than 90 percent of candidates finish this type of screening process.
Make Screening a Conversation
The traditional application procedure can be very formal. Turn it into a conversation to keep candidates engaged. That may seem very time-consuming for employers, but you can turn to technology to help create that compelling experience.
A conversational AI assistant can take over from the first text and automate 95 percent of the hiring process. The assistant checks off screening, scheduling and onboarding without requiring time from the hiring manager. Conversational AI provides a hands-on experience regardless of the time of day. Applicants can apply or ask for help at midnight and get the response they need. The experience is simple, easy — and fast.
Meritage Hospitality Group employed a conversational AI assistant. With the new technology, hiring employees took four days instead of multiple weeks and saved general managers more than two hours of work a week.
Making an offer isn’t the end of the hiring journey. Many companies become victims of “ghosting,” where applicants disappear without giving a reason. One in five people who accept an offer won’t show up for their first day, and 20 percent never fill out onboarding paperwork. A significant factor contributing to this attrition is confusion or frustration about what comes after the job offer.
Forget about your email and digital paperwork onboarding. Create mobile-friendly forms and company documents. Allow conversational AI to assist candidates through the process of filling out tax and employment verification materials. The assistant can answer questions like “What should I wear?” and other common inquiries prior to the first day to help ensure the new employee is prepared.
You and your candidates both want the same thing: to fill an open job. Make it easy to accomplish. Eliminate unnecessary obstacles. Make the process mobile with minimal clicks. Provide support along the way with conversational AI. The resources you dedicate to recruiting candidates don’t need to be man hours. Technology can revolutionize the hourly hiring process and help you get your staffing to your desired level.