Now that you know how important a positive brand is, how exactly do you go about improving and strengthening yours? Some aspects are very organic, and take time to develop, but without setting guiding principles your brand message wont be clear, enticing or effective.
To begin, take stock. Is your restaurant actually a good place to work? Would you want to work there, as a crew member, or a line cook, or a server? What would you like about it, what could be better? Ask for input from your current team, anonymously if you think youd get more honest answers. And be realistic about what you can and cant do, in terms of budget, schedule requirements, or the skills and strengths of your staff. Then get started:
- Encourage your employees to become your ambassadors. Give them rewards for referrals, and ask them for stories you can share in your social media outlets and through recruiting materials. Make their success stories your brands stories. Look at Wendys career page as an example.
- While you are at it, revamp your recruiting materials as needed. Describe your restaurant using colorful and descriptive language, and get rid of lengthy and boring job descriptions. Your job postings and classifieds ads are just as much marketing as your sales advertising. You want all of it to be catchy, engaging and on message to attract the applicants you prefer.
- Make your recruiting efforts uniform and as close to perfect as possible. Respond to all of your applicants quickly, even if its a gentle no. Nearly 75% of applicants never hear a word back after applying. Not only do you lose that applicant forever, you also lose a potential customer.
- Speed things up! Make sure its easy and quick for applicants to apply, and then make those hiring decisions in a timely way. According to WyckWyre applicant survey responses, each restaurant applicant is applying to at least two other jobs, so grab the good ones before someone else does!
- Practice perfection! Once theyve been hired you need to have a seamless onboarding and training process in place. It leaves a negative impression on a new hire if her first few days are a confusing mess of missing forms, payroll issues, or inept and disorganized training. Follow through on your brand promises long after the hire. Continued training, honest and frequent assessments of goal attainment, recognition of achievements and keeping an open line of communication will turn your new hires into your brand ambassadors.
If youre still not certain that Employer Branding is important, wander on over to glassdoor and see if any of your employees have left reviews. Check out competitor reviews. In a tighter job market applicants have more options on where theyd like to work. As a restaurant operator you know the importance of first impressions, the value of positive interactions, and the cost of a bad reputation. Apply that knowledge to your recruiting efforts and building a solid Employer Brand.
More and more companies turn to online applicant tracking and electronic onboarding to avoid missteps during the application and hiring process.
WyckWyre is Hyrell’s restaurant and hospitality industry hiring tool. To learn more about how to improve your restaurant hiring process, contact WyckWyre today to request a demo.