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Preparing Your Business for the Summer Rush

Preparing Your Business for the Summer Rush

By Eric Mclean


It’s getting warmer across the country and restaurants and bars are starting to prepare for the summer rush. If you own or manage a bar or restaurant, you will surely benefit from being ready and organized before this busy time. This will ensure you are better able to handle the spike in crowds and are more relaxed heading into the season. This will also make sure your employees are better prepared to handle the increase in patrons.

Below you will find some suggestions to help you prepare your business – and your staff – for the summer rush.


Recruit Staff

As we head into the summer months, millennials across the country will be searching for work – and there is perhaps no better starting point than a restaurant/bar. It’s a great place for someone looking to bolster their income, work flexible hours and make a few new friends for good measure. Knowing this, restaurants need to be mindful of their recruitment strategy when trying to hire seasonal staff.

One suggestion might be getting your business to connect with colleges and high schools. You could have exhibits at college job fairs and post job openings in student employment offices as well as in our employment website.

A fun way to recruit potential job candidates is to transform your current employees into recruiters. Consider implementing a staff search program – where current employees would be rewarded for referring a new staff member.

Don’t wait until you are too busy to hire new staff. In order for people to work at their best they need time to train and learn the proper procedures of your business. Hiring early gives you time to hire the right staff, nab the best talent, and time to train and schedule properly. Remember your staff will need holidays too, so make sure you have enough people to cover the shifts.

We spoke to Andrew Grace, Co-Owner of Mulligan’s Golf Bar in Ottawa, Ontario about this very topic.

"Ottawa really comes alive in the summertime. Whether it’s the upcoming Tulip Festival in May or Bluesfest in July, we certainly need to be prepared for an uptick in foot traffic. Not to mention the bar's proximity to Parliament Hill and the Byward Market.

Now knowing all of this, I can’t stress enough how important it is for us, or for any business, to staff-up accordingly before the summer. However, we are not just hiring out of necessity; we want to hire the right people for the right job. It’s these types of decisions that will prove to be invaluable to our brand.”


Spring Cleaning

It would also be wise to schedule one day a week to start cleaning up your restaurant.  An unkempt working environment is not going to do you in any favours when trying to boost workplace morale either. No employee likes working in a dirty, dark and cluttered environment. The cleanliness of your restaurant is an extension of the product/service you provide, and ultimately your brand. You want your employees to say good things about your business from a number of different respects.


Consider a Marketing Strategy

With so many holidays in the late spring and summer; it is important to have a marketing plan in place including important statutory holidays and local celebrations. Having your events and specials pre-determined will make it easier on your staff to get things ready. The less stressed you are the better. Don’t forget about the power of online marketing. Update your web page and social media channels with all your upcoming events and specials.


Equipment Tune-Up

Ensuring your business equipment runs in good condition is a must when preparing for the summer bustle. Have professionals come in periodically to check the essential machinery by which the business runs. This preventative measure will assure smooth sailing through the summer months and will help you and your employees do a better job and provide a better service.


Lastly observe your talent carefully.  Some of your new staff members may be looking to stay for good and turn this summer job into a full-time position, when available.  


For more workplace management advice visit our resource centre at hiring.monster.ca and take a look at the latest trends and news in the retail and hospitality spectrum by visiting www.monster.ca/retail-hospitality.