How to recruit and retain employees in a contactless pandemic

Photograph: Shutterstock

The pandemic has intensified two already challenging tasks in the restaurant industry: recruiting and retaining employees. As concerns abound about following the proper infection control procedures, adhering to strict protocols—and ensuring new employees adhere as well—represents a new aspect of the recruitment process. It shows that a restaurant cares about its employees and is, therefore, a desirable place to work. Also, it helps to provide a safeguard that a restaurant is hiring the right people.

Best foot forward

To attract the right personnel, it is important to hire safely. Use technology to both scout out and interview prospective employees. In an effort to help spread the word that safety is of paramount importance, update the “careers” section of the website with infection control protocols. Tell employees what measures are being taken to protect them while they are on the job. Consider mentioning how the restaurant is handling personal protective equipment and what options are available to employees in case they get sick, such as sick days.

It’s also important to hire smart to ensure new employees are following infection control protocols as well. To help with this endeavor, make sure to include COVID-19 safety protocols with job descriptions. Front-of-house and back-of-house employees should know how they are responsible for acting both with customers and among themselves. And training should reinforce these responsibilities.

Solutions for responsible, effective recruiting

Finding solutions to address challenges set forth by the pandemic is important in all aspects of restaurant management, including recruiting new employees. With TalentReef, operators gain access to solutions that address some recruitment and retention needs during the pandemic. Contactless sourcing and hiring allows restaurant to automatically broadcast jobs to job boards  

Restaurants working with TalentReef can also get help with onboarding, a critical step for retaining employees. A strong talent management system allows managers to automatically track onboarding processes online and inform new hires of any outstanding paperwork or missed steps that need to be completed. A fully optimized and contactless experience also enables new hires to complete all of their new hire paperwork remotely.

Finally, TalentReef’s digital training solution enables restaurants to upload their training content to support COVID-19 best practices or policies and procedures. The training can address hygiene protocols, delivery and take-out best practices, testing requirements/procedures, and approaches for handling customer concerns and fears.

The pandemic clearly has thrown a wrench into the recruitment and retention process. But with the right strategies and the right solutions, restaurants can adjust to the new environment.  

To learn more about solutions for ensuring compliance and safety in the current landscape, visit

This post is sponsored by talentReef


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