Eight things that make a qualified candidate turn away from your hospitality job
You despise generic resumes and hate cover letters that were obviously created from a template. You quickly reject candidates who submit applications rife with typos. And you routinely reject job seekers who don’t fulfill your requirements. You’re on a mission to find the best possible candidates for your hospitality organization—but you’re also being evaluated by the very professionals you seek. Make any of the following mistakes and many of them will turn away from the job you have to offer.
1. Too little time to apply
You need a new front desk supervisor, bartender or housekeeping attendant and you need to hire them now. However, posting a job ad that gives candidates too little time to apply is going to turn many of them away. Completing an application—whether in person or online—or customizing a cover letter and resume takes time. To ensure you receive the greatest number of qualified candidates, give them at least 10 to 14 days to find the position and apply.
2. An obscure location
Online job boards attract hospitality candidates from all over the world. This means even small hotels or restaurants in lesser known parts of the country can pull potential employees from a much larger pool than may be available in their immediate area. However, in order to keep too many of them from turning away from the posted job because they’re unfamiliar with its whereabouts, you may want to use the nearest metropolitan area as the listed location.
3. A vague job title
Most of today’s job seekers use keywords to search for positions online. These keywords include common job titles within their hospitality area of interest. While creative titles—such as ‘director of first impressions’ or ‘resident wish grantor’—may suit a fun-loving company culture, posted job ads with these titles are going to attract fewer qualified candidates than the more traditional ‘front desk associate’ and ‘concierge.’
4. No indication of compensation
Every business in the hospitality industry wants to hire professionals who love what they do and are passionate about maximizing the guest or customer experience. But the basic fact of the matter is even the highest quality candidate has bills to pay and mouths to feed. He or she has to care about money as much as the opportunity to work in his or her chosen field. While you don’t have to list a specific salary within your job ad, a range based on qualifications and experience will make your organization more appealing to many professionals.
5. A meaningless, inaccurate or poorly written job description
Some words and phrases—such as ‘dynamic individual,’ ‘driven self-starter’ and ‘cooperative team player’—have been so overused in both job descriptions and resumes that they’ve become virtually meaningless. Avoid them when writing the description of your posted hospitality job and focus instead on the actual duties the position includes and skills required to fulfill those duties.
Make sure you have an accurate—and current—picture of these duties and requirements before you do so. Don’t rely on the description written the last time the job was vacant as hospitality is a fluid industry and things may have changed substantially since then. Ask a coworker to proofread the content as well. Qualified candidates are just as turned off by grammatical and spelling errors as you are.
6. No information about your company culture
While an outline of the benefits candidates can expect when working at your organization is important, don’t stop there. Today’s job seeker wants to understand your mission and values. They want to know your company goals as well as how the position for which you’re advertising fits into the structure of the company. Before they even submit an application, qualified candidates want to know what it will be like to work for you—both day to day and over the long run.
7. A tedious application process
We’ve already noted that applying for jobs takes time. However, if you want to avoid losing qualified candidates, you must make sure it doesn’t take too much of it. Not only should you keep your application as short and sweet as possible, you should also ensure you’re using applicant tracking software with an intuitive front end and tools (such as an auto-fill from resume option) that consistently work properly.
8. Lack of communication
From acknowledging receipt of their application or resume to updating them on where they stand after an interview, communication is essential during every stage of the hiring process. Ignoring the qualified candidates your business needs is a surefire way to make them turn away from your hospitality job.