By Florent Malbranche, CEO, Brigad (www.brigad.co)
With an extra bank holiday booked this year to celebrate King Charles’ Coronation, hospitality businesses will be wanting to make the most of the busy weekend and boost their sales for the year. Weather permitting, the coronation weekend looks set to be busier than a usual bank holiday as the government has given hospitality venues permission to stay open until 1am. Early projections predict that the coronation will boost the UK economy by £1 billion through hospitality services, with pubs, restaurants, bars, clubs, shops and hotels at the frontline of sales. For most of the UK, this coronation will be the only one in living memory.
Even people who won’t celebrate the monarchy will still be making the most of the extra bank holiday, especially thanks to the extra allowance in licensing hours between Friday, May 5th and Sunday, May 7th.
The extra trading hours have been backed by UKHospitality, who’ve said that they are “fully behind” the government’s coronation plans, especially as the festive season was not as lucrative as many businesses will have hoped. Kate Nicholls, chief executive of UKHospitality, said of the extended trading hours: “Not only will it benefit customers, but it also means businesses will be able to trade for longer, increase footfall and generate additional sales.”
However, with a staffing shortage in the hospitality industry, there will be many businesses which will find it difficult to maximise revenues and take advantage of this huge opportunity.
Is it possible to find talented and reliable last-minute staff?
The Coronation weekend is set to be the busiest bank holiday of the year. As all food and beverage businesses know, at such a busy time of the year it’s important to find relief work well ahead of schedule.
So, how can you reinforce your team with competent workers, all while wasting as little time as possible? Should you turn to temping agencies, hire on a short-term contract, or call in casual staff to temporarily beef up your teams? Maybe you should consider a freelancer.
Freelance jobs are, by nature, ever-evolving, and freelancers have to give the best of themselves in order to ensure longevity in their business venture. This extra drive is incredibly important in industries where a general lack of motivation invariably leads to lower-quality service and delivery.
Of course, the aim is not to completely replace your existing salaried staff with freelancers. Quite the opposite. Freelancers offer the possibility to support and reinforce existing teams. Every organisation needs a permanent team that knows the place like the back of its hand, particularly in the service industry.
A restaurant’s regular customers enjoy seeing the same friendly waiter, who greets them with a smile, knows how they take their coffee, and makes them feel like they’re not just another customer. Team stability is essential in running any type of establishment.
Since 2016, hospitality talent platform and app Brigad has helped thousands of hospitality businesses to find the best self-employed hospitality staff for this blended approach. Time is precious, but it only takes around 3 minutes to post a mission on the Brigad app, and 80% of missions posted are accepted in less than 2 hours. Be prepared for the coronation weekend, and secure support if you need it.
As with the Queen’s diamond jubilee, the government has released a toolkit and recipe book to help with this year’s Coronation celebrations, including homemade bunting, recipe cards, kids’ activities and even Spotify playlists which includes the likes of The Beatles, Coldplay, Ed Sheeran, and Boney M’s “Daddy Cool”.
The government has released a royal recipe kit to celebrate Charles’ coronation – which does not include coronation chicken. Bake Offer winner Nadiya Hussain offers a starter – a coronation aubergine – fried till tender, and drizzled with a “simple coronation sauce”. Chef Ken Hom, the “leading authority on Chinese cuisine”, provides the main cause with a coronation roast rack of lamb with an Asian-style marinade. Chef Adam Handling provides dessert with a strawberry and ginger trifle – another twist on a British classic.
There will be sure to be plenty more dishes being invented over the weekend to celebrate the day, and rewards fit for a King will surely come to creative hospitality businesses.