Restaurant Human Resource Managers: Roles & Duties

By Massimo Montone | Human Resources

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What makes a dining experience stand out? Is it the ambience? The food? The location? While all of these are important, service quality can trump bad food if it is high enough. That is what will determine whether disgruntled or happy diners will return to your restaurant or go to your competitors instead.

If this is the main factor behind the success of your restaurant, hiring competent restaurant human resource managers should be your top priority. These professionals know the kind of staff that can make or break a restaurant’s reputation and can also help with the general financial upkeep of your establishment.

Of course, a novice will just not do, unless you are on a tight budget. Your restaurant’s human resources manager should have skills and experiences that make him/her an asset. Here are some of the roles and duties they will be responsible for:

Restaurant HR manager

Management of Human Resources

If you find yourself as a restaurant human resource manager in a restaurant rather than a franchise, you may have to pull double duty as a manager as well. For example, besides just recruiting staff, you may also be responsible for the following duties:

  • Training new staff members when they join the team.
  • Overseeing employees’ daily activities and resolving issues.
  • Conducting meetings with employees for their professional growth and development
  • Conducting performance reviews and aiding staff members in setting professional goals.
  • Managing time-off requests as per labour regulations and policies.

In order to be a skilful restaurant human resource manager, you have to have strong communication skills and have the skills to delegate tasks when work gets overwhelming. You also need to be proficient in recruitment and scheduling technology to make your job easier. The more staff members are hired, the more work you will have to do.

Management of Finances

Besides strong people management skills, restaurant human resource managers also have to be proficient in mathematics or finances. Some of the financial duties you may be asked to fulfil include the following:

  • Managing the restaurant’s budget including ensuring it is not breached with extra expenses. Since you will be managing a number of operating costs, anything from rent to utility expenses can get out of hand. This may be an issue in the beginning as you get to know the establishment, but future mistakes may be too costly if you are not skilled in using a POS system.
  • Tracking daily restaurant transactions may be one of your duties if the owner cannot afford to outsource accounting or doesn’t want to. This may also include payment management for vendors and employees.

If you are responsible for managing the finances of the restaurant, you need to have some basic bookkeeping and accounting skills. Plus, you should also be proficient in the latest accounting and budgeting software. It will make your job a lot easier and more manageable.

7 Tips to Manage Restaurant Finances in 2021

Management of Operations

As a human resources manager in a small restaurant, you will have to wear a number of hats. This includes ensuring that it is run smoothly every day. Some of the responsibilities you will have include the following:

  • Maintaining and overseeing inventory to ensure necessary items are in stock. This may also include price negotiations with vendors and maintaining good working relationships with them.
  • Ensuring all the restaurant’s licenses are up to date regarding business operations and hygiene protocols. You will ultimately be held responsible if the restaurant is not found to be compliant.

As a HR manager in a restaurant who is also responsible for operations, you need to ensure you are up to date regarding the latest regulatory changes and food laws. This includes laws pertaining to cashless restaurants and schedules. Plus, you need to practice using inventory software as well.

Customer Service Management

If you are working in the restaurant business, your hospitality skills have to be top notch, irrespective of the role you play. That being said, some of the roles you will be responsible for to ensure great customer service include the following:

  • Ask diners how their experience was by going from table to table. This is the manager’s job, but you could ask to do it a few times to get a general idea about the service and where improvements can be made.
  • Address customer complaints and use their feedback to train the entire staff including the kitchen staff if need be. Consider hiring chefs to train the latter.
  • Every diner should experience the same high quality level of hospitality. To ensure this, lead by example and display those skills whether you are interacting with them or the staff.

Restaurant human resource managers have to have strong people skills. This means that besides knowing how to deal with happy customers, you should also know how to placate irate ones. Both kinds of interactions have to display the same level of professionalism you expect from the staff. Plus, make sure you are up to date on the latest trends to ensure your restaurant remains competitive.

The bottom line is that as a HR manager in a restaurant, you will have to juggle a number of duties at first. With time, you should have gained the trust of the staff and the owner enough to hire your more HR professionals especially as the restaurant begins to grow under your guidance. With dedication and hard work, there is no reason why you cannot build a solid reputation in the field as a more than competent HR head.

Do you want to know more? Browse through our blogs to receive more trade secrets. You can also hire our restaurant consultants for professional assistance.

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About the Author

Massimo’s career has grown up through the restaurant world, starting as a waiter through to high-end restaurant openings within an operational management capacity. This depth of experience has allowed him to understand the business from both a guest’s needs to what a team needs, giving him the benefit of an all-rounded view and approach to problem solving.