Metro Detroit Hospitality Industry Braces for Busy Summer Months

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DETROIT (WXYZ) — On Friday, the U.S. Department of Labor released its April jobs report. It shows that employers added 428,000 jobs.

The agency said the leisure and hospitality sector, which has been hardest hit by the pandemic, led the recent increase in hiring.

While hiring has been an overall challenge for businesses for much of the pandemic, establishments 7 Action News spoke to say they are doing everything they can to maintain adequate staffing levels. over the next few summer months.

“We’re not unique in that we work in the hospitality industry – restaurants, hotels, bars – which are really struggling to retain and recruit staff at the moment,” said Maceo Keeling, style director life at the Detroit Foundation Hotel.

With summer weddings, monthly events and the proximity of major events to downtown Detroit, Keeling said his team tackles recruiting challenges by better managing the workload of existing staff. He explained that this includes reducing hours during slower periods and increasing staffing levels during busier nights.

Keeling said the hotel has also stepped up recruitment efforts through job postings.

“Interest in candidates has been constant, but it will always be the challenge to find recruits at those higher levels where you need more experience and more specialized expertise,” he explained.

Higher turnover for some of the hourly positions is also expected, Keeling said.

Ryan Miller, head of client success at Employment BOOST, said: ‘So usually in the summer there’s a little less movement in the job market because people have their vacations booked, they’re usually going to places on weekends and they use their accumulated time.”

“It’s both as candidates and also the people who hired those candidates,” he explained.

Because of this, Miller said hiring tends to slow during the summer months, which presents a seasonal challenge for recruiters.

Jessica Britton, Manager at Mootz Pizzeria and Bar, said: “We had some great candidates, very talented candidates, which helps us in our training process.

She said that because the restaurant is relatively small, it doesn’t require a large staff on a day-to-day basis. This helps prevent burnout of kitchen staff and servers ahead of the summer months.

“I think it’s going to be good. It will be busy. We have already had our good days. We’ve had record days here. Our staff knew how to take care of it. But we’re always looking to bring more, more energetic people to our staff,” Britton explained.

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