Tips to Hire Seasonal Staff for your Restaurant Holiday Rush

December 30, 2019


Seasonal highs like Christmas and Eids are key trading periods for restaurants. Therefore, restaurant managers need to consider seasonal hiring, which can help a lot in handling the seasonal rush and the annual influx of customers.

However, hiring a seasonal staff might be a daunting mission, not a simple task. Restaurant managers have to know from where to hire these seasonal restaurant staff, and how to train them in no time. Hiring the right seasonal staff ensures that you achieve profits and be on top of your seasonal rush without compromising service or quality.

Follow these tips to hire seasonal staff for your restaurant holiday rush to ensure things run smoothly when hiring seasonal or temporary staff for the upcoming holiday season.


Before Hiring Seasonal Staff:

To ensure that hiring a seasonal staff is a good move, you need to clear out the following three points:

·What times of the year your restaurant seems busy?

You need to know that steady growth in customers differs from encountering a seasonal rush or a busy season. Expanding your full-time staff is necessary if your restaurant experiences busy times consistently throughout the year.

However, if you experience a hike in business around Christmas, Eids, National Day, or any other holiday, it is advisable to hire seasonal staff.

·What time do you have to train new staff?

It might be time-consuming to properly and thoroughly train your seasonal staff. However, your employees, whether full-time or seasonal, are your restaurant’s image. Accordingly, never compromise having a well-trained staff who can provide a great service. You can make use of an operations manual or an employee handbook if you do not have time for a training program.

·What is the legal impact of hiring seasonal staff?

Consider checking your local regulations before hiring seasonal staff. Besides, contact your insurance company about coverage for seasonal staff and identify how this may affect your current rates.


Tips to Hire Seasonal Staff for your Restaurant Holiday Rush

1. Pinpoint your restaurant’s needs:

You need to start by identifying your restaurant’s busy seasons so that you can determine which dates you will need your seasonal staff to work. POS sales data can give you an insight into sales at different periods so that you know the right number of employees to need to fill the vacancy during the peak seasons. You also need to figure out the positions you need to fill.


2. Hire Your Last Year’s Best Seasonal Employees:

Always try to build a relationship with your seasonal restaurant staff. Because you might need them again the next year. Hiring you last year’s staff, you will not need to train them again. They know your work environment and your team members. Moreover, they are familiar with your restaurant concept. Therefore, they can upsell your menu and drive you more revenues.


3. Set clear expectations in the job description:

Make it clear at the job posting that this is seasonal work only. For instance, you can write “Waiter / Waitress (Part-Time, Christmas Only).” the job description must cover all tasks a candidate is expected to perform, including any labor-intensive tasks or challenges.


4. Start Early:

Consider listing your open positions 3-4 months before your busy season. Creating interest, interviewing applicants, and training new hires take a lot of time.

According to Colin Fisher, Managing Partner at The Candidate: “The lead time you need for hiring seasonal staff is dependent on the season, Christmas, for example, might need a marketing strategy to be devised to attract candidates around six months beforehand – this should then be rolled out around three months before hire start.”

Candidates might be high school kids, college students, or recent college graduates.


5. Ask your current employees for referrals:

Your permanent employees will never mislead you because they know what you expect of your employees. They only recommend those who they believe are qualified for the job. Consider offering an incentive to permanent staff if you hire their recommendations.


6. Look for the best:

Make it your top priority to hire those with relevant experience who already have experience in the duties that they will be carrying out at your restaurant. You also need to look for quick learners who present positive attitudes. In addition, make sure that your seasonal hires are available when you need them.


7. Make use of agencies:

It is a good idea to use multiple reputable agencies when you are hiring seasonal staff. You can always get a wide range of prices, services, and alternatives if one agency is short-staffed.


When hiring a seasonal employee, decide whether this candidate can move on to become a full-time employee. By doing so, you could save yourself the time and effort of looking for a full-time employee in the future.