Finding the perfect staff to hire for brand activations is a challenge. Actually, staffing in general is the greatest challenge our clients face. Why? Multiple reasons, here are some to name a few:
- Manpower quantity vary (5, 10, 50, sometimes hundreds!)
- Skills requirements can change from one event to the next
- Staff must be available when you need them
- Hired staff isn’t on the payroll / is freelancing
- Some cancel last minute, others never show up for duty
- Require special product training
- and the list goes on…
No matter how difficult it may be to find staff, we know one thing for sure: agencies and brands will always be looking for the perfect staff to hire for an activation. We’ve recently published an article on the importance of staffing training. But before even thinking about training your staff, it’s important to first identify where and how to find the best candidates.
Goal: make event staffing simple and more efficient.
Context: As part of our advisory work with clients, we keep an eye out for solution that solve their main challenges. We recently met with the founders of a new platform in Montreal called HelloStaff and wanted to share this with you.
Find event staff with the right skills
Ultimately, you want to find the perfect staff. One that does an amazing job at taking on the brand/client’s values, delivers the key messages and learn technicalities required for the job. Thus, it’s important, to identify early some of the core skills that you want the staff to have.
This could be:
- Having a brand ambassador experience / product specialist
- Leadership skills / Team lead
- Barmaid / Barman skills
- Experienced with children
- or even DJ-ing
Simply make a list with each staff skill you need and the quantity. The “can do everything” staff doesn’t exist. You could find great all-rounders (rare) but what you want is a specialist. Quality over quantity. This is what will make a difference and impact engagement of visitors.
“HelloStaff’s large database of hand-picked talents enables our clients to fill in any position they have. We know experienced and skilled staff is targeted. That’s why we have created an algorithm that suggests only talents fitting to all criteria. Rating & Reviews system is also important: agencies can select staff based on the best comments they received in previous activations.”
Thomas Lussiez, HelloStaff CEO.
A key strength of platforms like AirBnB, Amazon and HelloStaff is the recommendation engine. A mechanism where you can quickly filter through staff based on evaluations made by others. This works by having brands and agencies leave evaluations for staff they worked with.
It is now possible to quickly filter through staff by adjusting the star rating of each applicant. This is another huge time-saver, literally crowd-sourcing recommendations made by staff hiring peers as they worked with a candidate.
“Times when you had to publish on Social media is over. It’s time to automate. Simply create an event and send job offers to your favorite talents.”
Thomas Lussiez, HelloStaff CEO.
Manage event staff and teams
Once you’ve secured staff it’s time to get organized. This is another tricky step of the event staffing process. Teams that operate large events with a lot of freelance staff on hire know this too well.
This is something we’ve always been looking for as a solution to recommend our customers to use.
Feed-in your own staff to the system and connect it with teams of staff you hired. In addition, here are some of the features:
- Assign responsibilities and centralize the communication chain
- Share schedules
- Manage calendars & edit staff shifts
- Monitor your staffing budget by previewing the recruitment cost for each position
- Produce event reports straight within the app
Event staff invoicing
Finally, the last part of the puzzle is the one of finances. When you hire freelancers, the most complex task for any company working with them is the invoicing process. Since these workers are not on the company’s payroll, they must invoice you for their working hours. This results in a tedious process involving sometimes hundreds of emails back and forth.
More often than not, brands and agencies face staff that has no experience with the basic process of creating an invoice. This step is critical for the consolidation of your event expenses, and that is also were online platforms can come-in and fill the gap.
Consolidate and automate the editing of all your staff invoices in one click. A huge time saver!
We believe that platforms like HelloStaff will be key places for brands and agencies to find qualified staff in the near future. For now, this particular one only operates out of Montreal, QC in Canada. While expansion to other markets will come soon enough, competition is growing and we are looking forward to see how solutions will evolve.
If you’ve had some recent experience with other similar platforms, we’d love to hear more about it. Make sure to drop us a line on our LinkedIn page.
Photo by Perry Grone