November typically marks the beginning of the peak Christmas season and all that ensues. Over-crowded stores with shoppers trying to bag the best bargain; busy and often stressed-out staff doing their absolute best to maintain stress levels at a minimum while serving with a smile is the norm across stores nationwide. The next few weeks can often be the make or break for some businesses. However, with the cost-of-living crisis on the cards, how can small businesses prepare for the holidays?
Mr. Stephen Roebuck, Head of Operations from Employsure; one of Australia’s leading experts in Employment Relations and Health and Safety commented, “The retail and hospitality industries are unfortunately still struggling with chronic labour shortages. There are over 40,000 job vacancies within the retail sector with small businesses forced to operate at reduced hours due to the lack of staff the holiday season can be challenging and complicated for employers, especially with managing the peak season rush your business.”
“If that wasn’t stressful enough, employers must also manage employee leave requests and understand public holiday entitlements. Business owners must make smart choices and plan for the holidays and ensure a smooth business continuity process is in place over the festive period.”
For retail, hospitality, and hair and beauty, the holiday season comprises of robust sales, peak traffic, and busy staff schedules. However, employers need to be mindful that small businesses are now competing in a highly fragmented market for both consumers and employees. It is an absolute must that business owners support their employees in any way they can. Create realistic schedules for employees and remember to allocate additional breaks.
Mr. Roebuck further commented, “Small business owners are juggling different roles and responsibilities. They often act as the manager, HR person, mentor, and cheerleader for their employees. They wear many hats and play several roles within the business, such as being needed by their employees, their customers, suppliers, and distributors. With the Christmas season on its way, employers must be well-versed with employee entitlements, leave management, and duty of care. They cannot afford to be negligent or ignorant on these issues as the consequences are far too costly for any small business owner. Employsure has released resources specifically tailored to support business owners with their obligations over the holiday period. We are here to help employers, so they don’t have to shoulder the burden alone.”