Chicago has endured its share of negative headlines over the last year, but the city’s hospitality industry renaissance shows no signs of letting up. New records for Chicago hotel occupancy were set in 2015, and ten new downtown hotels (with more than 2400 rooms) opened during the year. Common sense would argue that this enormous growth can’t continue at the same pace forever, but new downtown properties like the London House and Marriott Marquis McCormick Place are still on the way, and new neighborhood hotels like the Ace in Fulton Market and Nobu in the West Loop are on the drawing board.
The city’s hotel boom has brought with it an unprecedented demand for experienced hospitality workers. Some chain properties find and hire those employees through established corporate channels. Others, however, have found that using the services of hospitality staffing agencies in Chicago, such as market-leader Quality Hotel Staffing, has enabled them to bring large numbers of qualified staffers on board at a reasonable cost.
A Twist on Chicago Staffing Agencies
Employment and staffing agencies in Chicago have been around for many years, of course. A number of them provide full- or part-time workers for a number of industries, including hospitality, but by their very nature they can’t devote their full attention to recruiting the very best hotel and restaurant workers – they’re also busy recruiting for their clients in other sectors.
That’s provided a big opening for Quality Hotel Staffing and its competitors. By focusing exclusively on the hospitality industry these companies can network throughout the sector, setting up robust employee recruitment networks and interacting with industry insiders who can provide accurate and meaningful references for applicants. Those are major steps beyond simply placing ads and doing perfunctory reference checks, standard operating procedure for most all-purpose Chicago staffing agencies without hospitality industry expertise.
Hospitality staffing agencies are also able to take extra steps to qualify applicants. As one example of how that works, Quality Hotel Staffing does specific skill testing as a part of its hiring process. It’s not enough that an applicant lists “banquet captain” on his resume and a previous supervisor verifies his employment; the applicant must show that he has the required knowledge and personal skills to perform the same task at a client hotel. This process assures that only qualified workers are hired.
A Cost-Effective Solution for Hotels
Most hospitality staffing agencies in Chicago do much more than screen potential hotel or restaurant workers. They also employ them. Payroll, benefits and other personnel issues are handled by the staffing agency, with the clients only responsible for monthly payments to lease the employees to work at their properties. This alleviates the cost uncertainty normally associated with employing a large work force, as well as the need for large human resources and payroll departments. Those bottom-line benefits are greatly appreciated by clients.
One other benefit for hotels is that they’re able to draw from a large and high-quality applicant pool. Quality Hotel Staffing and other Chicago staffing agencies serving the hospitality industry have become known among local hotel workers as the best avenue for finding attractive hospitality jobs, because the agencies are usually able to offer a choice of multiple positions at a number of area hotels and restaurants.
With Chicago’s travel and hospitality industry reaching new heights, it appears that Chicago hospitality agencies are ready to experience their own economic boom as well.