Changing employment scene.. a first for us

As we enter our 11th winter season (remember, we are a ski town) I am looking at staffing. I called a manager meeting this week for our 4 manangers and we talked through crew and hiring.

For the first time ever, we do not need to hire any new staff! We have a couple of returning seasonal people and our regular crew. This will give us about 15 crew and EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM has worked for us in at least one winter before and many have several years with us. As we ramp up from our current low-season numbers of 4-5K per WEEK to 8-10K per week before Christmas up to the 30-35K we will do Christmas week, having a veteran crew should really smooth things out.

Are you guys finding less staff turnover in this economy? Is that our silver lining? Are you able to actually run lower labor cost by having more experienced crews? Our $12 experienced cooks cost us less than the $9-10 new guys because I can run with one or two less guys on a shift.

Until these last couple months where we have been trying to hire two or three “more” people, we have had the same crew now for at least two or three years now.

Its actually just been hard to find help period. Many of the applicants that do inquire have many limitations because they don’t want to give up their government benefits.

In short we have had a good solid crew for a while now but its still difficult as ever to find people to work.

I’m able to find much better part time help right now. I usually use college students but have a natural turnover. I’m finding that I have a lot more quality applicants and few options for them to be tempted to jump from job to job like they would a year ago.

Definitely much better quality applicants and hires. We will hire about 30 part timers between March & May.