Hiring Good People Keeps Getting Harder

by | Jul 24, 2018

C-stores can play on the “gig economy” mindset of flexible, alternative work schedules.

The Labor Department reported the national unemployment rate ticked back up in June – to just 4% — up from 3.8% in May. This still represents a drop from last June’s 4.3% unemployment rate. This trend is making the already challenging task of staffing convenience stores that much more challenging.

According to a recent report in The Atlantic focusing on the Midwest, nearly 99% of those who want a job in the state of Iowa are working. “Businesses are getting a little desperate,” Elisabeth Buck, president of the United Way of Iowa, told the magazine. Joe McConville, who operates a small chain of pizza restaurants in the state said he is facing a “black hole” in finding more experienced 20-something employees, forcing him to increase wages and benefit costs.

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In the c-store market, at least one chain has looked at its benefits package as a means of attracting and retaining quality staff members. According to a recent Convenience Store Decisions report, High’s of Baltimore has rolled out an affordable health care plan for its nearly 250 part-time employees.

One additional area of focus may be increasing the soft costs in paying attention to improved work-life balance, or, in the words of Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, “work/life harmony.” As many 20-something workers place greater value on the meaning of their work relative to their overall life, there may be both a challenge and an opportunity for c-stores with their non-9-to-5 heritage. The traditional 9-to-5 workday is going by the wayside in most industries, workers are exploring the benefits of alternative workdays to better fit their lifestyles and c-stores can be the answer. According to a recent article in Entrepreneur, workers experimenting with working at different times of the day are finding improved personal and professional productivity. For c-stores – picking up on this mindset and properly communicating its popularity may help fill in some of that hiring “black hole.”

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Business Accelerator Team is an outside-in catalyst assisting with insight, strategy, marketing and connections. Our consultancy provides business-development expertise derived from a deep understanding of what has worked with suppliers, retailers and media in retailing and foodservice. If you would like to learn more about how Business Accelerator Team can help your Company attract more qualified candidates and improve your overall hiring process, contact us for more information.


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