As staffing shortages worsen and open jobs go unfilled for shift after shift, it’s reasonable for tensions between foodservice and the human resources department to mount. However, HR is not your enemy, says Dave Reeves, director of hospitality services at Elmhurst Memorial Healthcare in Elmhurst, Ill. “In fact, they could be your biggest ally,” he says. Here are three tips FSDs recommend for getting HR on your side.
1. Cross over staff roles
At the University of Southern California in Los Angeles, a training manager’s duties straddle the foodservice and HR departments. “It works because it’s like we have an advocate for us, but she also advocates for their needs,” says Kris Klinger, USC’s assistant vice president of retail operations.
2. Do the work in-house
The Nutrition Services Department at Lee’s Summit R-7 School District in Missouri posts its own job openings using a software system and signage. A foodservice coordinator then oversees hiring. “It works better for us to do the interviewing because we are upfront about what the positions consist of,” says Lori Danella, nutrition services coordinator.
3. Create shadowing opportunities
Martha Rardin, director of nutrition and dietetics at Hendricks Regional Health in Danville, Ind., employs shadowing to make sure HR knows the personality and skills needed for various positions. “The representative gained a better understanding of the pace and the physical nature of the work,” she says.