At the very root of any successful organisation are the people behind the show. It is really that simple. Have a good hiring strategy in place that identifies the best people for the job and half the work of being successful is already over. However, it is easier said than done. Business owners and top HR executives should sit down and formulate plans, matching job requirements with the type of people that need to be hired. The best companies have clear cut guidelines in this direction with specific employee manuals.
Given this scenario, what are the steps that you should take as a cafe owner to hire the right staff for your establishment?
- Define job requirements – Discuss with your managers the specific job requirements. There will always be a difference of opinion amongst your managers of what makes a good employee so you have to sort this out first. The next step is to put job ads in newspapers clearly defining the role that job aspirants will be required to play. Be as informative about your cafe as possible and be specific about qualifications and experience expected from applicants.
You can also get in touch with a recruitment agency in Melbourne or wherever your cafe is situated. In that case you do not have to go through the long drawn hiring process. These agencies have database of potential employees for different industries. Simply inform them of your requirements and the best fit will be sent to you for final interview. In Melbourne, the leader in this field is First Personnel, a hiring agency with long years of experience behind them.
- Interview board of more than one – Have at least two managers conducting interviews. Every human being has a specific mental framework and hence the clouded judgement of one should not result in negating of a really good candidate. Managers should sync up after interviews and compare notes with one addressing concerns of the other. Further, have a core set of questions prepared before the interview that will bring out whether the candidate shares your values and concerns. From your side the interviews should be conducted in a manner that brings out the professionalism of your cafe.
- Prepare for the interview – Strange as it may sound, preparing for an interview is a two way street. It is not only potential job seekers at your cafe that should come ready for the interview, you should too. Remember, the applicants are also evaluating you in their own way. Dress appropriately and read every resume beforehand. Have resume specific questions ready with you and your managers. Insist on every interviewee providing three professional references and make it clear that you will be reverting back to at least two of them. Your cafe is a purely service oriented business and people who are in direct contact with your patrons must have impeccable credentials and backgrounds.
- Hiring for a new cafe – While the basics of hiring for a new or running cafe are the same, there are some background preparations that are required for ones starting off. You have to decide on the number of staff required to optimise your services. Over hiring will increase your recurring expenses and as a new business you can hardly afford to do so. Decide on the number of managers, chefs, cooks, dishwashers, serving staff, hosting staff and bartenders you need to get your business off the ground. A well structured hiring policy from the initial stages of business will pay you rich dividends in the long run.
A cafe is a client centric business so setting benchmarks of excellence in customer service through the right staff is crucial for you.