Caterers regularly quote staffing problems as one of the biggest causes of stress. Staff cancelling at the last minute, or simply failing to show up can ruin a caterer’s trading day. You need to hire reliable people who’ll work hard and fast, and who you can trust with the till.
Employ someone with experience in the catering industry if possible
Ask other traders if they know anyone reliable looking for work
If you’re a start-up, family and friends might be your best bet
Don’t be afraid to offer a higher rate of pay to an excellent employee
Don’t trust them? Don’t hire them.
An experienced and reliable staff member will be able to serve at least twice as much food as a newbie. So you want to retain your staff as long as possible. And you can only do that if you keep them happy.
Stats show that staff are more likely to stay with employers who have invested in them through training. Make sure you provide all legally-required training for your staff – you can find out more about catering training courses here.
You should also do practice sessions before you trade, so that they know what to do from set-up to take-down. Shrewd food business operators also train their staff in customer service. How to handle complaints, what to do if a customer is abusive and how to keep an itchy queue calm are skills that could come in very useful!
Your team’s performance is your responsibility. Show them how to do a good job and lead by example at every stage of service. These tips will help you keep your staff working and smiling:
Have a laugh while you work - you’re in the service-with-a-smile business! If your customers see you having fun with your staff, they’ll enjoy the mobile experience much more.
Ask your staff to come up with new ideas about how to do things better – they’ll feel more involved and they’ll probably have excellent and profitable ideas!
Pay your staff fairly. Obviously you must pay at least National Minimum Wage (or the National Living Wage if they're over 25), but if you want to really motivate them, consider paying extra.
Reward good performances. Praise, thanks and bonuses are a powerful way to motivate staff. If you’re not grateful, why would they want to work hard for you?
And we love to share ideas about keeping hard-working staff happy with our members. Give us a call if you'd like to chat about joining and put a smile on our faces - 0121 603 2524 is the number to call.
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