Outsourcing Strategies for Franchise Business Owners

There are Pros and Cons to Outsourcing. Here’s What Franchisees Should Know.

Current U.S. labor data shows there are a record five million more job openings than unemployed people in the United States, making the hiring climate more competitive than ever. In response, franchise owners are finding creative ways to keep a customer service focus, including outsourcing. Some positions are better than others for gig jobs. What’s the best way to decide?

Franchise owners often have multiple locations and managers. Start by working with staff to find out what positions they’re having a hard time filling. Keep in mind, not all jobs are good for gig work.

For example, every business has essential business functions. Finding a gig worker for a leadership position or job that is critical to the business is not a good idea. Also keep control of these functions that have propriety or cash oversight.

The front desk professional or restaurant hostess also isn’t the best job to outsource. These are the people who are the face of the business. They know how the business works and can provide the highest level of customer service.

When to Consider Outsourcing

Currently, online job boards list thousands of franchise leadership job openings. It’s a buyer’s market for job seekers. If the business is having challenges filling positions for corporate-level leaders, managers and other essential jobs, take a creative approach. Find a firm that specializes in direct hire placements for franchisees. Executive recruiters create a customized hiring plan, and because this is their specialty area, they can help source the right candidate(s) for consideration. How do you know when to call in recruiting help? Clients typically have similar stories that sound like this:

  • Burnt out employees: Their teams are stretched thin and stressed out trying to wear too many different hats. Managers cannot work behind the bar and a hostess cannot be a busser in perpetuity, for example.
  • Customer service issues: They say customer service is suffering because there are not enough staff members to take orders, fill orders and provide efficiency to keep people coming back.
  • Losing employees: The current staff is backfilling and spending too much time doing tasks that they weren’t hired to do. In turn, they say they’re risking losing team members.
  • No time for development: There are new areas the business would like to develop, but there’s just no time.
  • Overworked employees: Important business functions are being set to the side to keep up with the current pace. People are doing double duty.
  • Lack of work-life balance: Bottom line, work-life balance is not happening for leadership or team members who are being asked to do more and work more.

If something here sounds familiar, consider outsourcing. Be creative by shifting team members into essential jobs and staffing with gig workers for other roles. Here are a few examples of the foodservice industry.

Hiring Temporary Employees

Because busser and dishwasher positions often have similar responsibilities from business to business, it’s not too difficult for temp employees to hop in when needed. Just make sure to clearly define the responsibilities (for example whether they need to use an industrial dishwasher) when communicating your request.

Pairing Gig Workers with Staff

Pairing a temporary employee to work with the regular on-staff host or front desk representative can be advantageous. It gives the gig worker a partner mentor to learn about your business and gives your business a backup staff member.

Outsourcing Servers, Bartenders and Cooks

While server, bartenders, and cook positions can be outsourced, it’s extra important to communicate whether they need to know the menu or not. Providing the menu upfront (ideally with a day or two advanced notice) will make the transition easier for the temporary workers. Many of the temporary staff assigned in this category also have experience with various point of sale software programs learned from previous assignments. Like the host position, it will be beneficial to pair these positions with experienced employees if they need help or have questions.

Temporary employees can bring a fresh perspective to your business and open the talent pool of available candidates. By knowing what positions to outsource in the hospitality industry, you can ease some of the staffing woes you may be facing right now. If you’re looking for a reliable and industry-experienced staffing partner, contact LGC to learn more.

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George Lessmeister is CEO and founder of LGC Hospitality, a national staffing firm headquartered in Indianapolis. LGC has offices in nearly 40 U.S. cities. Team members work with hotel and restaurant leadership to place executives and temporary workers.
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