Every week we comb through the news to find employment trends affecting the hospitality industry so you don’t have to. This week’s Hospitality in the News topic: creating your holiday staffing plan. 

The last three months of the year always seem to fly by faster than the first nine, don’t they? Though we’re not quite yet at Halloween, 2023 will be upon us before we know it. That’s why it’s crucial to create a holiday staffing plan now.  

Before you decide what your holiday staffing plan should include, it’s important to consider what trends will be prevalent when hiring during the holidays. Because LGC has been staffing through two decades of holiday seasons, we have a good understanding of what to expect, even during the turbulent hiring climate we’ve been experiencing the past few years.  

Key Challenges to Expect This Holiday Season

The main challenge that will impact hiring during the 2022 holiday season is the current labor shortage. Reports show that across the U.S. there are more than 11 million job openings and only 6 million unemployed workers. Even if every single unemployed worker took one of those jobs, there would still be 5+ million open positions.  

Not only that, but “the leisure and hospitality industry has had the highest quit rate since July 2021,” consistently staying above 5.4%. Considering that the hospitality industry traditionally has a high turnover rate, the addition of a high quit rate means retention is more challenging than ever. When creating your holiday staffing plan, it’ll be important to take this point into consideration.  

Creating Your Holiday Staffing Plan

Now that we understand the impact of the labor shortage on hiring and retention, it’s time to think about your holiday staffing plan. The most important question to answer is, will you be handling hiring internally or seeking a staffing partner? As we mentioned earlier, the current deficit between available workers and open positions means that hiring – especially large numbers of workers – will be a challenge.  

If you plan to handle hiring yourself, running job advertisements and slapping a “now hiring” sign on your window won’t be enough to get the employees you need. With so many employment options for workers to choose from, businesses need to be proactive in order to hit their goals. And they need to offer workers what they want: flexibility.  

According to the most recent edition of McKinsey’s American Opportunity Survey, 87% of (25,000) respondents said they wanted flexibility from their next work opportunity. This percentage is likely to increase in the next couple of months when people are dealing with holidays and events. Are you able to offer flexibility to your current workforce? If not, then you need to rethink your staffing plan.  

Part of offering flexible scheduling is having the necessary number of staff. That way you can fill open shifts when other team members need time off, are sick, etc. But considering the aforementioned labor shortage, having extra staff on hand doesn’t seem realistic. That’s where a trusted staffing partner comes in. 

The best way to create a holiday staffing plan that appropriately and efficiently satisfies your needs is by adding a staffing partner to the mix who can help assist with your hiring needs. Rather than leaning heavily on your full-time employees, you can supplement your team with temporary workers who can fill in the staffing gaps.  

Find the Right Staffing Partner

With a staffing partner like LGC, you can tap into a pool of workers who are available right when you need them. Rather than going short-staffed if someone calls in sick, LGC can send a replacement to arrive ASAP. We can also assist with fluxes in seasonality. Rather than hiring people you’ll inevitably have to let go when business slows, LGC can provide temp workers for the duration of the season. Once they’re no longer needed, the assignment ends.  

Without a staffing partner, the onus falls entirely on the team you currently have in place. With high turnover and quit rates prevalent in the hospitality industry, it’s unrealistic to tell your employees they can’t call out or take time off because you don’t have someone to take their place; and it’s a good way to lose great talent to a competitor that will offer the flexibility they want and need. 

If you haven’t reached out to a staffing partner yet, it’s time to act. If you wait until you’re short-staffed, you’ll already be behind. Reach out to LGC today to learn how we can help you create a customized holiday staffing plan to satisfy your hiring needs.