Written By Noah Parks
It’s happening. Spring has sprung and the hospitality industry is finally starting to breathe some fresh air. After nearly 13 months of closures, partial openings, and new rules, the industry has begun to open their doors for good! And these state and city re-openings are happening at a rapid clip. So fast in fact that there is not a single place on 5th ave in my neighborhood here in beautiful Brooklyn that isn’t “hiring now”! In our industry the nature of the work can be intimidating and many establishments are asking for individuals with experience. However, now restaurants need anyone willing to learn. In some cases this can be the best for both the employer and the employee. As we’ve talked about before there’s a lot of transferable skills you gain working in hospitality.
HMG+ is prepared to staff a lot of these service positions from restaurants, to catering, to executive dining rooms. We have been doing outreach and engagement during this entire time to ensure that the service professionals feel cared for. One thing that tends to happen when places desperately need staff is that they’ll hire anyone. Luckily when companies hire through HMG+ they get a lot more on their investment. I invite you to review the past few months of the blog where I expound on the virtues of our Service Pros. This moment we’re meeting is perfect because it challenges and rewards individuals that are willing to adapt.
The frenzy of closures was so universal that very little varied from state to state. However, opening has proven to be a Herculean effort to stay safe while bringing business back. Here in New York City we faced massive fines, liquor licences were being suspended, and a slew of closures due to violations. As we reopen it’s vital that we all unify as one industry around the need to safely reopen. Employing a COVID Hospitality Compliance Officer (CHCO) is the most effective way to do that and keep us moving forward. The industry has adopted this role and while many say we are already home free, it’s not that simple.
The relaxing of restrictions and mandates will definitely improve our chances to roar back to pre-pandemic levels of business. However, people that have not been vaccinated or cannot be vaccinated, young adults, and a variety of other factors require us to continue to implement mitigation measures. If we consider it like any safety feature of a car, then it’s like having seat belts or not. The car without will drive either way, however in the event of an accident, the results could be deadly if you ignored the precaution of using the seatbelts. So, why risk it? What’s the upside of throwing caution to the wind? We believe that by erring on the side of caution, we will secure long term benefits for the entire industry.
In fact if we want to fill those restaurant positions AND those restaurants themselves, then we should keep following the guidelines and best practices. Imagine all those expanded outdoor seats filled safely, with space AT the bar where masked teams serve you ice cold drinks and a delicious meal. It’s as exciting as a Will Smith song without the potential for becoming a super spreader event. I’m truly encouraged by the “Help Wanted” signs, and by the upside of bringing a lot of new people into the industry. The upshot of having experience in hospitality whether it’s with HMG+ as a Service Professional or working at your local watering hole is that you’ll gain transferable skills! This is not only a career for passionate individuals, it’s an important stepping stone on the path of life.