Most of us have heard about the Saudi flexible work system “Marn”; which was launched by the Ministry of Human Resource and Social Development in 2020. The system allows employers to easily hire on short-term hourly contracts while eliminating the lengthy process of full-time staffing. Since its launch, 3000 companies have already signed up to use it and the number continues to grow. This includes businesses such as restaurants, cafes and retail stores. So why are companies incorporating flexible staffing?
One of the biggest challenges businesses in the F&B, hospitality, and retail industries face is the fluctuating demand throughout the year and even on the same day. Another challenge is the ridiculously high turnover of employees in this industry. To combat these challenges, companies are turning to flexible staffing to reduce hiring costs and increase efficiency in hiring for certain job titles. Read on to find out in-depth how companies are leveraging flexible staffing and how you can do that too.
The main focus of these companies is to use flexible staffing for front of the house (FOH) jobs that don’t require a lengthy onboarding process, which include:
Full-time staffing assumes that demand is fixed. Whereas in reality, demand in the F&B, hospitality, and retail industries is extremely variable throughout the week or even the day. Therefore, businesses that rely on full-time staffing will be understaffed during periods of high demand and overstaffed during periods of low demand.
Flexible staffing offers an alternative solution where it allows business to adapt to the changing demand rapidly and scale up or down based on their own unique needs. (See graph below)
The first graph shows that the cost of full-time staffing remains constant despite the fluctuation of revenue. In the other graph, the cost rises and falls in alignment with the revenue by using flexible staffing. You can learn about the difference between the cost of full-time staff vs flexible staffing through our tool.
The wrong hire costs companies an average of 30% of the employee’s salary in the first year. In addition to the financial cost, it causes a loss of productivity, time, and effort. The effort includes screening candidates, interviewing, onboarding and then tracking employee performance. This process typically takes 10 to 21 days for a full-time candidate to be hired and start working.
By using flexible staffing service providers, companies can skip most of these steps and avoid wrong hires. They can go straight to seeing how the candidate performs in a real work environment. So what does this mean for employers? It means they no longer have to make assumptions, but rather directly evaluate the candidate’s performance and commitment. No surprises!
If the experience is excellent for both the company and the flexible worker, a full or part-time job offer can be agreed on. So by using the “flexible to full-time” hiring model, companies can avoid unsuccessful hiring experiences. This will accelerate the recruitment process and reduce hiring costs.
Restaurants, cafes, and retail stores often face a sudden surge in demand for predictable and sometimes unpredictable reasons. These reasons include:
Seasons are times when there is high demand and high pressure to meet that demand. These seasons in Saudi Arabia generally include the Eid holiday, National Day, Ramadan, back-to-school season, etc. Certainly, during these times of peak demand, there is an urgent need to increase the number of staff members to cover the demand and continue to deliver a great experience for customers. Having the support of flexible staff is crucial in this case to keep the operations running smoothly. And the best part is that you won’t have to deal with the additional costs of being overstaffed after the season dies down.
Emergencies in restaurants, cafes, or retail stores are inevitable, and they pose a huge challenge to effectively operate the business. This goes from a staff member’s no-show to sudden resignations. These incidents certainly affect the ability to cover demand that day. Also, the rest of the staff has to compensate by pushing their limits. However, by using flexible staffing, you can operate smoothly by requesting a flexible staff member to cover these emergency shifts and paying them based on hours worked.
Many restaurants, cafes, and retail stores participate in events, whether it’s opening a pop-up store or setting up a Food Truck. This requires redeploying staff from stores to work on these temporary projects. However, flexible staffing allows businesses to use workers to cover this shortage in the stores for the duration of the event or temporary project. The advantage of flexible staffing is that you have employees available in a timely manner and ready to work when and where you need them.
Companies benefit from flexible staffing in getting access to a new talent pool with diversified skills and fresh perspectives who wouldn’t otherwise be accessible due to other commitments. This talent pool includes people who prefer a flexible lifestyle like students and employees looking for extra income in their free time. Here’s the interesting part, those people are eager for these opportunities, but they never apply because they are not able to fulfill the high demand of a full-time job.
Flexible staffing allows them to maintain their preferred lifestyle while providing great value to the company. It’s a win-win situation!
Several companies in Saudi Arabia offer flexible or part-time staffing services. One of them is Sabbar, which offers and executes a flexible staffing strategy for restaurants, cafes and retail stores.
By using flexible staffing service providers, you relieve yourself of the burden of recruiting, scheduling in branches, tracking attendance, and managing the payroll for flexible staff members. As a result, you will reduce the operational burden on your team, manage your branches efficiently, and provide an excellent experience for your customers.
Finally, If you’re interested in implementing flexible staffing but don’t know where to start, we’re here to help! Our team is available for a free consultation on how to run your business efficiently through flexible staffing.
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