Human Resources Approach in hotel pre-opening

The role of the Human Resource Department in the pre-opening is more difficult than established hotel because it has to recruit more people in a very short time to fulfill the manning of the hotel. Meeting up with the dateline target of manning can give pressure, especially when it takes a big number of manning. In addition, as the hotel number of hotel is growing very rapidly, there is fierce competition in the hotel job market. It is difficult to find the qualified candidates as they are normally recruited in chain or well-known hotel brand. Not surprising, in the hotel industry hijacking of hotel personnel is commonly happen. Hotel pre-opening is a challenge for Human Resource Department to build up a strong human capital to run the hotel operation in effective and efficient way. There are several tips that HR Department needs to understand and consider when dealing with recruitment in the period of pre-opening hotel.

A. Selection Process

Before the HR departments do the selection process, the HR department must decide the total manning.HR department must consider the number of the manning in accordance with the budget of the hotel. After deciding the total manning, the HR department  starts doing the selection. The selection starts from placing announcing the vacancy available. Since nowadays internet has been the most popular resources where people search for information, therefore placing a job advertisement on company website, hotel association, or job provider is effective. Walk in interview is the next step. Hotel can go to hotel schools or arrange it in its property.

The selection process is a crucial process where the success of hotel begins. Selecting and hiring best potentials people are the main objectives of hotel. In this step, usually hotel is looking for people that have the right attitude. Right attitude means that whether the person can be cooperative or not, friendly, helpful, good looking and mature enough. Another important one is the skill and knowledge. Hotel is looking for people already have the knowledge and skill needed. It will be seen from the educational background and experiences. The more linear the educational background and the experiences, the candidate will have more value. Hotel wants to be efficient in training, if the people recruited already have the experiences, hotel will not spend much in the training. Therefore, experienced ones are the ones the hotel is looking. Another important consideration is also the history of work experiences, candidates that have short period of work experiences are questioned and will not be considered highly.

It is impossible for the hotel to complete the manning 100%. Having it completes more 80% is good enough. The rest is carried through the process.

B. Induction Training

Once the manning is fulfilled, at least most of it. Hotel will do induction training. Induction training is done to socialize to the employee regarding the company profile, its objective, mission, vision, values, ethics, history, rules, and etiquette. It informs general standards applied in the hotel including greeting, grooming, hygiene, and hotel courtesy.

Delivering the induction training is not just to give away all those standards of the hotel. As the hotel wishes to form the morale of the employee, it is necessary that the induction training delivered in such way that it touches the heart of the employee and also practiced so that it is always remembered. It must involve the cognitive and affective aspect.

C. Departmental Standard Training

Another aspect in hotel pre-opening is that the new employee brings their own experiences to the hotel. And the experiences may vary from one to another employee. In this case hotel needs to conduct training on hotel the departmental standards. It needs to train the standard of the hotel such as room setting, restaurant set up, food standard, etc. Normally, hotel already have the standard operational procedure that the employee can refer too. However, it is important that the standard operation procedure is understood by everyone and is done accordingly. Therefore training on the standard is crucial. It is normally done by the head of department. Sometimes, although the standard has been trained to the employee, there is always something that is missed or not done accordingly. Therefore monitoring is needed. Once there is something missed or not done according to standard, it is necessary to do re-training to the employee until it is fully complied.

Next challenge is that HR faced in the pre-opening hotel, is that the pressure is more because everything is expected to be ready, when actually they’re not, such as the number of the manning. Limited manning forces the employee to do extra hours and multiple tasks, there are often the case that new employee cannot take pressures. Resigning employees and sick employees on the hotel pre-opening is a usual thing. HR needs to be able to provide good health insurance and handle turn over employee by doing fast move to replacement of the employees and ensuring the work still can be under control.

To lay a strong layer of human resources foundation is not an easy thing to do. It is one great challenge to deal with.