Chunk is an incredible Saudi brand that created the café and bakery, Chunk, established in 2016 and specialized in creative desserts, along with Social by Chunk, the restaurant, established in 2019. Chunk is known for its hip and modern decor as well as their exceptional customer service. The team, like many others, found itself in a tough situation during the Covid-19 lockdown. They realized that hiring was especially challenging due to the travel ban because they were unable to hire workers from abroad. However, Chunk decided to pioneer the industry and create an opportunity from this challenge by hiring Saudi locals using flexible staffing! This will not only help with the hiring challenges, but also with the inconsistent demand due to the lockdowns as well as the inevitable daily & weekly fluctuations known in the food and beverage industry.
Chunk partnered with Sabbar to cover an open role in 1 branch during weekends where there is high demand, then expanded to cover multiple roles in 3 branches on a daily basis!
Sabbar covered 99% of open roles including:
Chunk realized that competition is high, especially that one of its branches was in a highly trafficked mall, and so they required quality talent with great communication skills and English language proficiency. They also required Saudi locals to provide a culturally competent service to locals as well as represent local talent for any tourists visiting the area!
These requirements were met using Sabbar, which handled:
We used to show up at the Café to make sure that the employees chosen by Sabbar were competent. However, the employees were consistently outstanding to the point that they were arriving early to prep, and staying longer to help out during peak seasons. And that’s all unpaid!
Chunk team states that many employers are hesitant about hiring locals due to the stigma that they’re difficult to deal with, but it actually has many benefits including building stronger relationships with other locals in the area, which leads to bringing even more customers to your business.
Although they’ve had flexible contracts with minimal commitment, Chunk noticed that some employees stayed for months! They’ve attributed this to having a positive work environment, which they believe is the secret to a high retention rate.
But that’s easier said than done.. How do you actually create and maintain a great work environment that is especially supportive of Saudi and non-Saudi employees?
Whether you’re a cashier or a branch manager, Saudi or non-Saudi, a full-time or flexible staffer, Chunk believes that we are all equal, and that strong hierarchy and competition kills team spirit. This value also helps each and every one of the team to feel included and valued, which encourages them to own not only their work, but also the whole operation process in the branch. Everyone is working to achieve the same vision!
Many branch managers -and rightly so- want to keep their best employees motivated to work. They tend to do so, however, by promising promotions or raises based on hypothetical goals. Many of these goals are, unfortunately, either difficult to measure or vague in nature. The promise may have also been initiated without involving the hiring manager, which means that the possibility of a raise is actually much more difficult than expected, if they’re real at all! It comes at no surprise that these false promises tend to backfire and could cause employees to lose loyalty towards the brand.
There are multiple ways that Chunk follows to ensure that their employees are always motivated without breaking the bank. The team makes sure to recognize the efforts done by each and every one of their employees by sharing words of appreciation or giving them more responsibilities to develop their skills. This makes them feel valued and appreciated while maintaining transparency between employees and management.
Sabbar added to these efforts by creating a monthly newsletter for flexible staff to share their latest stories and achievements as well as engaging them using competitions with incentives! The staff is also encouraged to share their amazing stories and experience in Sabbar’s blog which motivates others to create meaningful experiences from their work opportunities.
One of the most important ways to recognize employees for their efforts is.. well, paying them for it! Chunk dedicates a team to ensure that each employee is paid fairly, accurately and on time.
In addition, Sabbar gave the highest priority to compensations by managing weekly payment based on hours worked. Sabbar’s technology facilitated Chunk’s efforts which led employees to feel safe and secure at their job, and therefore, increasing their retention and ensureing a positive experience.
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