The Hospitality industry has been named the 6th biggest recruiting industry in the UK.

However, with competition for Hospitality jobs at a 5-year low (according to recent research from Adzuna) and Brexit being predicted to lead to a 60,000/year shortfall in Hospitality staff, recruiters need to review what is and isn’t working with their existing recruitment strategy.

So, what do you need to do to ensure your Hospitality recruitment strategy achieves the results you need?

ClickIQ Data – Hospitality Summary

Using the data from the ClickIQ platform, we compared a sample of 27,745 jobs to give you the Hospitality benchmark stats that you need to know.

 Hospitality Sector StatsHow does this compare to other industries?
Conversion Rate13%Low
Organic Response Rate83%High
Cost-Per-Click Range (Paid)£0.24 – £0.31Average
Average Cost-Per-Application (CPA)£0.40Low
Average CPA (Paid Only)£4.39High

ClickIQ Data – Job Specific Summary

Let’s break this down further to explore the most common roles in the Hospitality sector…

 Chef JobsServing Staff JobsBar Staff Jobs
Conversion Rate10%19%12%
Organic Response Rate77%78%95%
Cost-Per-Click Range (Paid)£0.31£0.31£0.24
Average Cost-Per-Application (CPA)£0.74£0.36£0.10
Average CPA (Paid Only)£5.79£4.42£2.97

Please note that these are only averages. They will be affected by factors like Location, Salary, and Employer Brand. For example, if you are recruiting in a competitive location, you may need to spend more. 

Some Specific Examples…

Let’s explore some specific examples. Below are three different roles from Mitchells and Butlers. There were some variations across the sector, but the below was fairly typical.

 ChefWaiter/ WaitressBar Staff
Conversion Rate11%13%10%

What does this tell us?

Back of house jobs, such as Chefs, are much harder to fill as on average they get less engagement (i.e. clicks) than front of house jobs.

Front of house staff, receive higher levels of engagement – for example, front of house jobs typically get 2112.12% more clicks than back of house jobs.

Back of house jobs are much more expensive to fill than front of house staff as a result of the low levels of engagement.

Front of house staff can rely on organic traffic. Typically, 87% of responses come organically. However, this will be influenced by other factors such as location, salary and employer brand.

Key Factors: The Employer Brand Divide

Well-Known Employers

If you have a strong, well-known employer brand, you may be able to generate much of your applicant responses organically (i.e. for free). Particularly, for easy to fill, front of house roles.

For example, one well-known events company was able to generate over 2,000 applications for one Bar Staff role for free.

Lesser-Known Employers

Less well-known employers will need to spend more on recruitment, rather than relying on organic traffic alone – particularly for back of house roles.

Platforms, like ClickIQ, ensure that you spend the right amount to reach the best candidates. Using AI and Automation, they constantly optimise performance to ensure there is no wasted spend.

Key Factors: Location and Salary

Location, Location, Location

Location can be a difficult recruiting challenge to overcome. For jobs that are under-performing, recruiters need to invest in Facebook targeting. Simply choose your locations and launch your job campaign using either employer-branded ads or direct response (ClickIQ can help you with both).

If you are recruiting for Hospitality staff in highly competitive areas, such as London, you will need to spend more to generate your desired number of applications. We would recommend spending from £0.50.

Show Me The Money

Adzuna says Hospitality salaries are stuck in a rut with a 1.1% decline over the last year. With competition for Hospitality jobs at a 5-year low, this is an area that Hospitality employers may need to look at.

ClickIQ – Hospitality PPC Benchmarks

The average cost-per-click for Hospitality roles on the ClickIQ system is £0.28.

This can vary depending on location and employer. If you’re only using ClickIQ to recruit Bar or Serving staff, then you can possibly set the CPC to around £0.24. If you are recruiting Chefs then you may need to go slightly higher to around £0.31.

Spotlight on Indeed

Indeed are the UK’s largest job board. They kindly provided us with some specific data in reference to Hospitality recruitment in October 2018:

Let’s break this down further to explore the most common roles in the Hospitality sector…

Average Cost-Per-Click for Hospitality Roles:

  • Bar Staff Jobs = £0.28
  • Serving Staff Jobs = £0.33
  • Chef Jobs = £1.01

Top Devices by Clicks:

65% of clicks on Hospitality jobs on Indeed came from mobile devices. 

Hospitality recruiters therefore need to ensure that their careers site and application process is mobile-friendly.

Top Search Terms by Clicks for Hospitality Roles:

Bar Staff:

  • Bar Staff = 13.83%
  • Bar = 2.47%
  • Waitress = 1.29%
  • Bar Work = 0.52%
  • Restaurant = 0.43%

Serving Staff:

  • Waitress = 8.16%
  • Waiter = 2.52%
  • Bar Staff = 2.44% 
  • Restaurant = 1.55%
  • Server = 1.34%

Chef Jobs:

  • Chef = 33.60%
  • Cook = 2.52%
  • Commis Chef = 2.14% 
  • Catering = 1.51%
  • Breakfast Chef = 1.45%

Millennials and Chatbots

With a large percentage of Hospitality staff being Millennials and Gen Z, employers need to make their application process as engaging as possible. That means ditching the application form and introducing the chatbot.

  • Chatbots are live 24/7 – which is essential when recruiting shift-based staff who may be applying at odd hours.
  • Chatbots can effectively and naturally collect the data that you need from candidates.
  • Chatbots can triple conversion rates when used instead of traditional application forms.
  • Chatbots can be used on SMS, Slack, Messenger and more so you target audiences most-used platforms.
  • If you are interested in finding out more about Chatbots and their impact on conversion rates, contact us today.

How much should you be spending?

Depending on the following variables – different spend levels may be required to fill roles:

  • Level of Job:

Low End = Front-of-House

Top End  = Chef

  • Employer Brand:

% Percentage of Organic Sessions

Influence of Employer impacts the above

  • Local Markets and Location:

Differ from region to region

Further Recommendations:

  • Pay-per-click rather than per-credit – this will allow you to adjust and optimise your advertising spend to ensure more is invested in the harder to fill roles or locations rather than just posting and praying.
  • Advertising organically can work – particularly for front of house roles or if you are a well-known brand. Try to get as many applications as you can for free before you switch to paid media.
  • Start at £0.28 per click – the data shows that this is a good baseline CPC to start at. However, you may need to adjust the CPC depending on the type of role or location.
  • Add a Chatbot – Hospitality staff doing shift work may not apply to jobs in typical business hours. A chatbot is live 24/7 meaning you can capture their application quickly and simply without them needing to upload a CV at 2am in the morning.
  • Invest in Social Media targeting – for harder to fill roles or locations, passive candidate targeting can be a great way to reach an untapped pool of candidates directly through their Facebook newsfeeds. Businesses are increasingly opting to target candidates through social media channels as well as traditional methods.

Useful Links:

  1. 7 Key Trends for Recruitment Advertising in 2018
  2. Keep Calm the Robots are Coming
  3. The in-house Recruiters Guide to Google for Jobs Strategy
  4. The Financial Benefits of Programmatic Technology and AI in Recruitment Advertising
  5. Keep up with all the latest trends and discussions by signing up to Hung Lee’s Recruiting Brainfood here.

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