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04/05/2022

3 Ways to Approach the Evolving Hospitality Workforce 

From company culture to making the right type of technology available to employees, companies must rethink the way they interact with staff.
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hotel staff

The 2022 Job Openings and Labor Turnover Report by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that in 2021 alone there were 75.6 million hires across the U.S. That same year, 47.8 million workers resigned from their jobs. The pandemic has caused a shift among the American workforce – people are now looking at their jobs as disposable and a new mindset has entered the conversation; income is no longer the only desire in today’s job search.

Pre-pandemic, it was common to hear, ‘a job is a job, I’m lucky to have one.’ That mindset has been eliminated from today’s workforce. It’s no longer about finding any opportunity, but the one that benefits the employee’s lifestyle and facilitates accelerated growth. Employers used to hold all the power, but now they’re beginning to understand that this power dynamic has shifted. Employees and contractors alike are the ones in the driver’s seat, and in order for employers to retain them and stay competitive in this market, they need to deliver an exceptional experience.

GENERATING A POSITIVE COMPANY CULTURE

Today the ‘modern workplace’ looks different for everyone and it is projected that by the end of 2022, 25% of all professional jobs in North America will be remote. Corporate America is losing to an evolving gig economy, as many salaried employees are moving away from their deskbound jobs to enter industries that allow them more freedom. By 2023 it is projected that more than half (52%) of the American workforce will be part of the gig economy – a huge sector of this workforce can be found in hospitality. The pandemic hit the hospitality industry hard, but with this renewed workforce at its fingertips, the industry is on the rise, seeing an uptick in welcoming these nine-to-fivers who are looking for a different workplace culture.

While there is valuable opportunity in this, it’s also quickly becoming an increasingly competitive space, which means curating the right company culture could make or break how employers retain their staff. Implementing incentives, listening to employee feedback and providing an opportunity for growth will promote loyalty with this group.

MAKING THE RIGHT TYPE OF TECH ACCESSIBLE

There is a lot of discussion around how technology can act as a solution to advance the gig workplace, yet workers are reporting that there is a lack of technological resources available to them.

The deskless workforce, which houses gig workers, makes up 80% of the global workforce - these employees are demanding more resources from their employers – 70% of deskless workers report that more technology would help them do their jobs better. Technology resources are a way to access knowledge that is currently not being provided to them. In an era where innovation is happening around every corner, this is a huge issue and one that employers should be paying more attention to. There is no one-size-fits-all solution to workplace technology, especially when accounting for a workforce that relies on mobile communication, so investing in the right technologies will not only help workers succeed but provide employers with data that can help them better understand the needs of their workers.

IMMEDIATE ACCESS TO INFORMATION AND COMMUNICATION

That said, positive communication can ultimately sway the employee experience. Like many gig or on-demand working industries, hospitality workers are on-the-move, which means they’re relying heavily on their mobile devices for communication with their employer. Newcomers that are making the shift from corporate culture are used to face to face interactions, but that is not usually the case with gig work.

Recently on-demand gig workers reported a major disconnect happening between leadership and workers – on average there is a 43% pointdifference between the state of communication reported by workers versus the leaders, which implies that leaders are out of touch with their workforce needs. How information is delivered to this modern workforce can strongly affect the employee experience. Creating an efficient flow of communication through integrated technology, as an example, can strengthen the work environment, reflecting positively on the employer and resulting in greater retention rates.

In an employee-driven world, employers across the hospitality industry are up against more challenges than they’ve ever experienced. To be competitive in a saturated market, they’ll have to reevaluate their internal approach to discover how to best meet the demands of this modernized workforce.

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

In 2005, Jacob Waern began his career with European media company Modern Times Group, quickly rising to CEO of one of its larger subsidiaries where he scaled the company’s profitability. Since then, Waern has cemented his mark in the world of technology, as a co-founder of Rocket Internet – a company starting and scaling global internet and tech companies – and was the Director of Digital Ventures at international telecommunications and media company Millicom. 

During his time at Millicom, the idea for EduMe was born out of his collective experiences observing the difficulties in training globally dispersed deskless teams. As Founder and CEO of EduMe, Waern oversees the company’s mission to provide the deskless workforce with seamless access to relevant knowledge, enabling Workforce Success. For more information, visit https://edume.com/.