Human resource or HR officers in the hotel and restaurant sector would need to have perfect knowledge about the job market to never miss hiring the best-suited candidates for job vacancies at the shortest possible time, without the need for exams and interviews. However, screening applicants is a tedious process that could take several months, from submission of the resume and documentary requirements to the final interview. Thankfully, online job portals significantly reduce the tediousness of the hiring process, helping HR officers gain access to near perfect knowledge about certain portions of the job market.
Limited information and long processes
Jobseekers and employers in the hospitality industry both have very limited information about the job market, which sometimes results in mismatches in terms of candidates’ qualifications and the actual requirements of the employers. Even the most astute HR officers may sometimes find it hard to find the perfect matches for specific positions that require certain levels of training, skills, experience and attitude.
Typically, positions that require high-level skills and responsibility would require longer processing to screen the best candidates. Recruitment is often done through advertisements both in traditional tri-media and online. Manpower agencies are also contracted to find the best possible pool of applicants.
The processing time could take weeks or even months, depending on several factors such as job qualifications, responses from applicants and documentary requirements. In many cases, many of those who would respond are either not qualified or overqualified.
Applicants need to take exams or skill tests and undergo several interviews before they would be selected as well. And of course, most companies would require medical examinations for the selected applicants, which can add to the processing time.
A growing hospitality industry
The UAE is among the richest countries in the world that have a thriving hotel and restaurant sector. Its hospitality industry is projected to grow into a US$7.6 billion industry by 2022. This growth would mean higher demand for workers, but it would also mean heavier workloads for the HR officers.
World-class five-star hotels and restaurants in the UAE would need additional skilled workers such as chefs, bartenders and hotel managers, but processing applications would be more tasking as the standards also become more stringent and competitive.
According to a report by STR Global, Dubai has 53 new five-star hotels that will open before 2020. Many of these are already under construction. It is also projected that around 132,000 additional hotel rooms will be available in Dubai by 2019.
This astounding growth offers excellent job opportunities for many workers around the world who are seeking jobs in Dubai.
It now becomes a question of bridging the gap between the available opportunities and the available labor force.
Advantages of using online job portals
There are significant ways by which the hiring process for hotel jobs in the UAE could be made more efficient and effective with the help of online job portals specific for the hospitality industry. Here are the notable advantages:
1. Online job portals offer automatic matching
Matching available jobs with the qualifications of applicants can be more efficient when using job portals. Both the applicants and the companies seeking qualified workers are notified through emails or through their website (job portal platform) inbox about the best-suited opportunities.
Many job portals have algorithms that can automatically match jobs with applicants and vice-versa based on specific parameters such as years of experience, types of skills, work categories, and locations.
2. They are cost-effective
Both job seekers and employers can save a lot on the overhead costs of searching for jobs and for applicants, respectively.
On the part of job seekers, they would not need to travel and appear in person to different offices or manpower agencies just to submit their resumes. They can save on the transportation cost and incidental expenses such as snacks, grooming and document fees when job hunting.
On the other hand, employers can save on advertising costs in traditional tri-media. Employers may still be required to pay subscription fees, but at low prices.
3. They enable an organized and convenient search
If the automatic matching feature is insufficient in providing the needed information, employers and jobseekers may use the available search categories to find the information that they need. They can also dig deeper by viewing the profiles of prospects.
4. They provide updated information
Some portals offer ways for job applicants to know the progress status of their applications without the need for calling the prospective employers. Information about how many of the applicants have similar experiences and education may easily be viewed.
Employers may also easily view how the applicants are ranked based on certain parameters.
5. They arrange for online interviews and testing
Some job search portals have features that allow employers to interview applicants online and administer knowledge or skills tests. Likewise, the applicants could take the online exams under time pressure and be automatically ranked in compared to other applicants.
Some words of caution
Job portals may provide a wide range of advantages and convenience for both applicants and employers, but these platforms are not perfect, and some may pose some danger.
For example, applicants might become more vulnerable to identity theft as they provide detailed information about themselves on the platforms. On the other hand, companies may be exposed to scams and hacking as they also divulge a lot of details on the platforms.
So remember to choose only the most credible platforms for your specific industry that have the proper security features in place. This will ensure a safe and effective job match for both employers and candidates.
Daulet Zhumagulov is the Founder and CEO at WeHoteliers, a specialized online hospitality portal in the GCC region where prospective and experienced talents can explore career opportunities and be discovered by the top employers of the industry. The company’s mission is to provide an efficient and modern platform that will focus on the needs and interests of hospitality professionals.