HR For Hospitality: What Are The Opportunities?

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Human resources (HR) in a hospitality environment is a crucial part of what makes a hospitality business successful. Due to the nature of many hospitality roles, many are part time or casual jobs, therefore the staff turnover can be quite high. In larger hospitality businesses such as hotel or restaurant chains, this means that a dedicated HR department is vital to ensuring there is a sufficient level of staff for the entire business.

This department is in charge of all recruitment efforts, hiring, contract management and staff training. It is the responsibility of the HR manager to ensure that their business is fully staffed, that employees are treated well in line with the business’s HR policies, and that staff are adequately trained to carry out the job that they have been employed to do.

Within the HR department, there may be only 1 staff member, or there could be dozens of staff; this all depends on how large the company is, how many staff they employ and how much administration and training the department has to oversee. There are several roles within the HR department that provide a clear path for progression through the ranks.

HR director

The HR director is the top position in an HR department. This role is generally reserved for those who have been working as a human resources manager for several years and who has at least 10 years experience and training in the field. 

This role typically involves top level strategic and budgetary planning, assessment of business staffing requirements, oversight of all HR systems and processes, and the design and deployment of company training plans. The everyday minutiae is delegated to managers and administrators, allowing the director to focus on the big picture, long term vision for the business’s workforce.

HR manager

A HR manager will work under the HR director, and is generally tasked with all communications with staff. This includes interviewing candidates, hiring and firing, contract negotiation and management, conducting staff performance reviews, delivering training and many other duties.

The HR manager is typically the go to person for any employee disputes or grievances, and as such they need to be an excellent mediator who is compassionate and easy to talk to. The HR manager is also sometimes in charge of holiday management for their staff, although this is sometimes managed by the manager of each department. They may also take care of payroll for the staff, especially in cases where there is no dedicated finance team.

HR administrator

The main duties of an HR administrator is to ensure that all files and documentation relating to the HR department is well organised and in the right place. This may involve updating and organising staff files, payroll administration, organising elements of staff training, administering employee benefits, and any other administrative duties delegated to them by their manager.

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