Hospo Stories

Employee Marketing: Tips for Attracting Top Talent

Hospitality has long been competitive when it comes to attracting and holding onto top talent, and this has only increased post-COVID. With so many businesses struggling to fill vacancies, candidates have more choice in choosing the roles they want to apply for and less incentive to stay if there is a better offer to be had. It’s more important than ever to make employee well-being a priority in order to minimise turnover, but there will always be a time when recruitment is necessary - how can we approach it with the best chance of success?

Lay a good groundwork

Finding new team members is in many ways no different from finding new customers: you need a good reputation, a good product and a good marketing strategy. This starts with providing your existing staff with a good working environment, one which they would willingly – and genuinely - recommend to a friend or to someone coming in for an interview. Here are some things to consider in order to ensure that you are known as an employer of choice:

Positive work environment

Foster a positive and inclusive work culture that values and respects employees. Encourage teamwork and open communication, and provide regular feedback to create a supportive environment. Offering a healthy work-life balance and recognising employee achievements can boost job satisfaction and attract potential candidates.

If you are successfully scheduling interviews but having trouble with candidates turning down offers, you may need to honestly consider how your business is performing in this area. A happy team gives off a different vibe than an unhappy one, and this is often obvious to guests and applicants alike.

Competitive compensation and benefits

In an industry known for low wages, this can be a key factor; our staff work incredibly hard for little pay, and often they are willing to go across the street if it means even a slight improvement. The pandemic has further exacerbated the problem, as many hospitality workers found alternatives with better pay and more flexibility.

To attract talented individuals, you will need to offer competitive wages and benefits packages. Research industry standards to ensure your compensation aligns with or exceeds market rates. Additionally, consider offering perks like flexible work schedules, healthcare benefits, retirement plans, employee discounts and incentives to attract and retain top talent. Yes, it might hit your bottom line in the short term, but developing a strong and loyal team will reduce the costs related to turnover and could improve revenue through a positive impact on the consistency and customer service of your business.

Professional development opportunities

Emphasise the learning and growth potential within your organization. Provide opportunities for staff to acquire new skills, attend training workshops or conferences and advance their careers. Demonstrating a commitment to employee development will attract individuals seeking long-term growth and advancement.

Enhance your employer brand

Creating a positive workplace culture with a focus on employee well-being will help you to build a strong reputation as an employer of choice. When you are communicating to potential team members, highlight the positive aspects of working at your establishment such as employee benefits, career growth opportunities, a supportive work environment and a vibrant company culture. Leverage social media platforms, company websites, and online job portals to showcase your brand and attract potential candidates.

Attract the right candidates

Every hospitality business knows how difficult it can be to stand out in a crowded market, and this is no different in the competition for top talent. When you are putting out job ads, you need to catch the eye of potential candidates who may have dozens of options. How do you do it? Utilise the same principles you use to market to guests and capture reservations!

Emphasise unique selling points

Job ads for front line roles in particular are numerous, and the basics of the roles are similar. In addition to the specifics of the job, stand out by highlighting any unique or attractive features of your business. This could include a particular cuisine, a focus on sustainability, a well-known chef, or special recognition or awards. Showcase what sets your establishment apart to capture the attention of potential employees.

Streamline the application process

Simplify and streamline the application process to attract more candidates. Ensure that your job postings are clear, concise and easy to understand. Make it simple for candidates to apply by providing an online application system and a user-friendly interface. Minimise unnecessary steps and follow up promptly on submitted applications.

Utilise all channels

Just as we need to look for business in different markets, we should look for potential employees in a variety of spaces. This is especially true If your usual ways of finding staff are drying up or not producing the quality of candidates you want. Having a diverse pool and keeping an open mind about what the ‘ideal’ employee looks like can help to fill vacancies more quickly.

Employee referral programs

Encourage your current staff to refer potential candidates. Offer incentives, such as bonuses or rewards, to employees who successfully refer candidates who are hired and stay with the company for a designated period. This taps into your existing employees' networks and increases the likelihood of attracting candidates who are a good fit for your business – in fact, studies show that referred employees stay with the business longer!

Engage with local educational institutions

Establish partnerships with culinary schools, hospitality programs and local colleges to create internship opportunities, apprenticeships, or cooperative education programs. By nurturing relationships with these institutions, you can tap into a pool of aspiring professionals who may be interested in joining your business after graduation. Students can also be a great way to fill temporary or part-time positions - just make sure they are given the opportunity to learn while in the role, or the partnership may be short-lived.

Online presence and recruitment channels

Utilise online platforms and job boards specific to the hospitality industry to advertise job openings. Leverage Hospo.life and social media platforms like LinkedIn, Facebook, and Instagram to showcase your establishment, share success stories, and promote job opportunities. Actively engage with candidates who express interest and provide timely responses to inquiries.

Attend job fairs and industry events

Participate in local job fairs and industry-specific events to connect with potential candidates directly. By engaging face-to-face, you can create a personal connection and effectively communicate your company's values, culture and opportunities.


With a surplus of vacancies, the hospitality industry is more competitive than ever when it comes to attracting new talent. Approaching recruitment with a similar mindset to the way you attract guests can help. Ensuring you have a positive workplace culture and a great product will both keep your existing employees engaged and loyal and make you stand out to potential candidates. Utilise your reputation as a brand and as an employer of choice when posting jobs, and look for diverse talent channels to increase your chances of success.

Remember, attracting new staff is just the first step. Once you've successfully attracted candidates, it's important to have a well-defined recruitment and onboarding process in place to ensure a smooth transition and positive experience for new hires.

Hospo Jobs is dedicated to making it the recruitment process easy for both hospitality businesses and potential candidates. Customisable listings help you to showcase your business at its best, and the application system is designed to facilitate efficient management and communication. Best of all, it's exclusive to hospitality and tourism, so you won't have to compete with other industries!