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10/19/2022

How to Attract Hourly Workers

Younger employees are attracted to businesses that reflect their own personal beliefs and causes.
Image
a person sitting at a table in a restaurant

It’s no secret to hiring managers that 2022 has given rise to the Great Reshuffle. 

And with this new worldview comes a surge of young workers re-evaluating priorities and moving to jobs that better align with their evolving needs and values. 

Today, the current trend among these young workers is to seek more “permanent” employment.

Why? With widespread layoffs at major companies, and whispers of a looming recession, many workers are anxious about their future and leaning toward the financial stability of full-time and long-term work. 

But “full-time” and “long-term” work can be “hourly” work too.

True, today’s uneasy workers crave stability. However, it doesn’t mean they’re wholly fixated on traditional W-2 positions. 

Their newfound desire for independence remains strong, as they want to be in control of their workplace choices. This is particularly true among today’s growing number of Generation Z workers, roughly those under 24 years old, who are so critical to staffing in today’s hospitality industry. 

That’s why it’s critical to focus on attracting these hourly workers. Especially since it’s such a natural fit for hospitality teams and workers alike. Here’s why.

Hourly job seekers are already making a beeline to hospitality.

We’ve noticed that workers increasingly have no qualms about moving to entirely new industries. To learn more, we recently conducted a survey of 3,000+ hourly workers to better understand their motivations and most sought-after industries. Here are the top five:

  • Customer service (47%)
  • Retail (44%)
  • Restaurants (41%)
  • Warehousing (33%)
  • Hospitality (25%)

Given that hospitality and restaurants are core to the industry (and one can argue that many hospitality businesses have a “retail” element as well), the numbers speak for themselves. Hourly workers are motivated to move into the hospitality industry.

This makes perfect sense for today’s young job seekers, as hospitality work is evergreen and offers the stability of long-term employment. 

With pandemic restrictions lessening (knock on wood), American consumers are now getting out en masse. The result is restaurants, hotels, theme parks, and other hospitality venues that are consistently jam-packed. The work is there and will remain steady.

Hourly job seekers are also drawn to the gratification of hospitality work.

Snagajob's research has also found that the hospitality industry is exactly what many workers are looking for these days. Particularly after being cooped up for two-plus years during the pandemic.

Job seekers today appreciate that hospitality work is extremely social and often “in-person,” with the opportunity to engage with customers and fellow employees alike. They love the energy of being around others, particularly in an outdoor setting. And they naturally gravitate toward work that promotes well-being and positive mental health. Plus, hospitality offers them:

  • Relationship building: In such a highly social setting, it’s easy to interact far and wide. For short-term and long-term benefits.
  • Growth opportunities: With a high turnover rate, those seeking long-term stability can advance quickly. Workers constantly learn new skills and are coveted for their long-term commitment, both of which help to level up and move up.
  • Extreme flexibility: This is top of mind for today’s job seekers, and where hospitality shines in so many ways. With a variety of shift hours, multiple locations, events, and other factors, the industry is a magnet for today’s younger workers.

How to Attract Hourly Workers

First and foremost, rethink your criteria for candidates. 

Since so many job seekers are young, or moving from other industries, a majority may not have the direct work experience you’re accustomed to looking for. But remember that almost anyone can learn how to work a cash register or complete other tasks, so focus on finding people with the soft skills that are so important to hospitality. Look for people who can communicate, organize, and are motivated to advance. They’ll grow into long-term partners in your success.

Second, don’t forget to sweeten the pot. From wages and benefits to flexible scheduling, offer what it takes to catch someone’s eye and choose you over other job opportunities. Strike while the iron is hot and do what’s necessary to lock in these workers who will remain loyal for months on end.

Also, be sure to stress your company values. Our Snagajob survey shows that younger employees are attracted to businesses that reflect their own personal beliefs and causes. Promote the good deeds you do and how you support causes beyond making a profit. It will pay dividends quickly.

A Winning Combination

In today’s challenging hiring environment, it’s difficult to find a partnership that works so well for everyone involved. 

Businesses in the hospitality industry can readily find full-time hourly workers motivated for long-term employment. Not to mention gaining access to part-time hourly workers, when needed, for seasonal surges, large events, and to fill in for vacationing staff. Similarly, hourly workers benefit from the stability of hospitality work, in an environment that allows social connections with others, room for advancement, and long-term success.

So, as you rethink your hiring playbook amid today’s Great Reshuffle, be sure to include hourly workers. It’s a natural fit.

About the Author

Mathieu Stevenson is CEO of Snagajob. Appointed in 2019 after previously serving as Snagajob’s Chief Marketing Officer, Stevenson and his team are focused on using data and AI to realize the vision of becoming the first truly on-demand platform for hourly work, instantly connecting millions of hourly workers with hiring employers. Mathieu brings deep technology and marketplace experience across venture owned and public companies, including leadership roles at McKinsey & Company, HomeAway Inc , and most recently, Blucora Inc.