Tips for Using an On-Demand Hospitality Workforce

As you get started with your on-demand workforce, keep these tips in mind to ensure you're set up for success.

It's no secret that gig economy apps have transformed a number of industries.

Uber revolutionized the transportation industry, with many even using the company's namesake as a verb for needing a ride.

Instacart connects us to available shoppers who check our grocery lists off for us.

Rover provides peace of mind around pet care by connecting you to someone who can fulfill your dog walking or pet-sitting needs when you can't.

While these on-demand workforce solutions have become entwined in other industries, they're still relatively new to the hospitality industry.

The Covid-19 pandemic and the economic turmoil that followed left the hospitality industry reeling. Consistent, reliable help became hard to come by as the industry experience a mass exodus of workers.

Enter on-demand workforce solutions.

With the gig economy on the rise, on-demand workforce solutions are starting to play an integral role in how the industry gets work done.

As you get started with your on-demand workforce, here are some important tips and tricks to ensure you're set up for success.

Set Competitive Rates

If you want to attract top-tier workers to your open shifts, your hourly rate is a great place to start. 

The majority of hospitality gig economy apps require a $15 per hour minimum rate – more than double the federal minimum wage. 

Although gig economy apps attract workers for different reasons, everyone wants to be compensated fairly for their time.

When setting the rate for your shift posting, consider the role type, the associated experience level, and the role’s responsibilities. 

For example, if you’re looking for an event set-up crew member who will be lifting heavy equipment out in the sun for eight hours, a $15 per hour rate likely won’t attract many applicants. An hourly rate of $25 (or more!) would likely be seen as more reasonable for this type of work.

At the end of the day, people want to take on work that will be worth their time and efforts. For many hourly workers, that means making anywhere from $100 to $200 per shift. 

Highlight On-the-Job Benefits

While competitive rates are a great way to attract applicants to your shift posting, don’t forget that some of these workers might be taking on additional costs in order to work – such as childcare, transportation, or parking.

When you post a shift, include details about any on-the-job benefits the selected applicant will receive. This may include, but is not limited to:

Staff Meals

Don’t underestimate the impact of a free meal! This gives hourly workers one less thing to worry about as they head out the door to work a shift. Plus, they can keep an extra $5 to $15 in their pockets at the end of the day!


Does your business offer free parking? Will you validate a parking pass? Will workers need to pay for their own parking?

These are important details that applicants will take into consideration when applying for a shift. If your business is located in an area that’s notoriously difficult to park in, advertising the fact that you have free parking available on-site can make a world of difference.

Rideshare Vouchers

Rideshare apps, like Uber and Lyft, enable you to set up pre-paid vouchers that can be redeemed by riders. Reliable transportation is hard to come by for some people but offering free ride-share vouchers can help get quality workers to your shifts.

Offer Double Shifts

Working a double means working two consecutive shifts back-to-back (ie. 8am to 12pm and 12pm to 4pm). 

Double shifts equate to double the payout and that’s an attractive offer to hourly workers! Working a double shift enables workers to maximize both their time and their income. 

If your business could use help covering some doubles, be sure to make this opportunity available. 

It’s a good idea to still post these consecutive shifts separately in the event that you cannot find an applicant who’s interested or available to work both.

Gig economy users are hungry for opportunities to earn more cash. Posting double-shift opportunities is mutually beneficial to hourly workers and your business. 

Payout Immediately Upon Shift Completion 

On-demand workforce solutions can be a lifesaver for your business if you find yourself in a staffing pinch. But what you may not realize is the impact these solutions have on hourly workers as well.

Hourly workers join these gig economy platforms for a number of reasons, but oftentimes, finances are a major motivator. Whether they’re putting themselves through school, supporting a family, saving up for a home, or just looking to earn extra income – everyone has their own reason for picking up gig work.

But one thing remains constant across the board – everyone wants their money as soon as possible!

It’s best practice to pay out workers immediately following the successful completion of their shift. This not only benefits the hourly worker but it also helps your business’ reputation as well. 

Nowadays, many gig economy solutions have a two-way rating system that allows businesses and hourly workers to rate each other. To continue attracting high-quality applicants to your postings, it’s important to maintain a high rating – and how quickly you pay out workers can have a major influence on that rating!

Consider Rating and Reliability

It’s now common practice for gig economy platforms to enable you to provide immediate feedback on your experience.

For many on-demand workforce solutions, this includes rating the worker who performed your shift’s duties. 

While there’s a lot to take care of at the end of a shift, it’s important not to forget to rate your worker. Ratings are a great way for other businesses to gauge whether an applicant is the right fit for their posting.

When rating a worker, remember to be honest and provide a rating that matches your experience. 

Gig economy platforms are starting to take more than just your experience into account when it comes to worker reviews. Reliability scores are becoming increasingly popular as they enable businesses to understand how reliable a prospective worker might be 

Will they show up on time? Will they cancel? Will they complete the entire shift? These are all factors that will influence an hourly worker's reliability score.

Get Shifts Filled with On-Demand Workers

Using an on-demand workforce solution might seem intimidating, but these tips will ensure that both you and the hourly workers you source have a positive experience.

Although your hourly workforce doesn't receive the same benefits as your full-time employees (ie. health insurance), it doesn't mean that their needs shouldn't be taken into consideration.

On-demand workforce solutions should be mutually beneficial for both parties. While leveraging these solutions, be sure to consider how each action affects your business and the workers picking up your open shifts.

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