Jobs in hospitality: the hunt for great staff as the city re-awakens

From this week, every venue in the city has been able to open its doors for the first time in over half a year. People will be able to sit inside, outside, wherever they damn please (probably still at a table though, guys).

It’s the burst of life that we’ve all been waiting for. But as ever, behind that pint, that slice of pizza, that beautiful of plate of food, is a team of servers, bartenders, chefs, cocktail whizzes, wine buffs, managers, and the washer-upper.

For venues, it’s been challenging to find the people with the right skills and experience. After 12 months of furlough and a lack of new jobs, the demand for great talent in restaurants and bars has sky-rocketed. This means that for people searching for jobs or careers in hospitality, there are some great opportunities to be had.

One employer who is currently on the hunt for great talent is Common & Co, owners of Common, The Beagle in Chorlton and The Pilcrow in NOMA. They are about to open Cornerstone, a canalside pub on the new Kampus development, as well as a new Nell’s Pizza.

With these venues Common & Co is on a mission to ‘re-invent the pub and pizza’ and they want the best people to join them on the journey. They are currently looking recruiting for various roles at their sites, including a position as the General Manager at Cornerstone.

Jonny and Charlotte Heyes from Common & Co with some of the team

Unlike in other countries, working in hospitality isn’t necessarily treated as a career in the UK, something that Common & Co owners, Jonny and Charlotte Heyes say is down to many factors.

Jonny said: “We had predicted that recruitment was going to be a challenge this year with the pandemic combining with Brexit. Over the last year we’ve accelerated our plans to address this, such as adopting the real living wage, realigning our business model and introducing more technology (app ordering etc.). Nevertheless it’s still a very tough climate out there, good staff are hard to find and pay is on the up fairly rapidly. However, this could prove to be an important adjustment for the industry in regards to pay and conditions. There are myriad issues within the industry which have long been overdue for reform; pay, tipping, service charge, business rates, VAT rates all among them. 

“I believe hospitality to be an industry where people with passion will find a career which develops a unique set of skills and experiences and an opportunity for personal growth. This message needs to get out there to counter some of the negativity I’ve been seeing from people who I don’t think really understand the industry. It will always require you to be hard working, willing to work at weekends, willing to work evenings, however it can offer one of the most exciting, creative, social, flexible and entrepreneurial jobs of any industry.

“Margins in this business can be small and any improvements in pay and conditions will inevitably be passed on to the customer, now is as good a time as any to be honest with customers about what our service truly costs.”

“Now’s time to be honest with customers about what our service truly costs.

In the attempt to make their venues an enjoyable and fair place to work, Common & Co offers employees a living wage, leadership skills development and management training, multi-site progression opportunities and company wide discounts on food and drink.

A work-life balance is encouraged with 45 hour weeks and two days off for managers. There is a competitive annual salary and a 10% bonus, as well as four week payroll and a workplace pension.

The team at Common & Co say their vision is centred around caring: “As a people centric hospitality and events operator we care a lot about people, our team, our customers and our community. Our purpose is to help people be happy and have a good time so that they can build their relationships and make new ones.”

Common & Co is recruiting for a full team at their new pub Cornerstone

As well as the General Manager role at Cornerstone, Common & Co is recruiting a full team for the new pub, and there are also jobs available across their other venues.

This includes bartenders, front of house staff, supervisors, pizza captains (what a title) and pizza makers.

As well as searching for hospitality professionals who they can support in the development of their hospitality career, Common & Co are also interested in speaking to ‘inexperienced wannabees’ with the right attitude

Above all, they are looking for good, kind, nice people whose values align with theirs.

If you’re interested in applying for any of the roles at Common & Co, visit: commonandco.co.uk/careers.

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