Human Resources Management for Hospitality

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  • 0:04 The Importance of People
  • 1:37 HR & Hospitality Success
  • 5:01 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Beth Hendricks

Beth holds a master's degree in integrated marketing communications, and has worked in journalism and marketing throughout her career.

Effective human resources management can make or break a hospitality business. In this lesson, you'll learn about the importance of strong employees and the ways human resources can contribute to business success.

The Importance of People

Imagine you left town on vacation and arrived at your hotel only to be met by a young employee more concerned with chatting on the phone with a friend than helping you get checked in. After making you wait ten minutes, the front desk attendant finally rushes through your check-in process and you make your way to your room. Once there, you find a room that still shows the evidence of its last inhabitants: unmade beds, empty pizza boxes that litter the ground, and used towels lying on the floor in the bathroom. What's going on here?

One possible answer is poor human resources management. Human resources management is the part of a business that deals with attracting people to an organization and then managing them once they get there. In hospitality, which covers businesses like hotels, restaurants and cruise lines, the work is nothing if not people-related. Tourists from all walks of life travel to experience new cultures and new locations, coming into contact with workers from food servers to housekeepers.

Without adequate human resources practices in place, a hospitality business will fail the people test by not having the right staff adequately trained and ready and able to serve an eager audience. The diversity and depth of the hospitality industry are such that its workers need a variety of training, skills, and knowledge to keep pace with the products and services that consumers need.

Let's take a look at some ways that effective human resources management can contribute to a knowledgeable and well-trained staff and an enjoyable experience for consumers.

HR & Hospitality Success

The best path to success for a hospitality business is investing in its employees. How well employees do in a hotel, in a restaurant, or on an airline interacting with their consumers can determine whether a visitor is a one-time guest or a repeat customer for life.

To that end, human resources management has various areas where they can get involved to help facilitate a culture of hard-working employees who are well equipped to handle the front lines of the hospitality industry.


Planning responsibilities can range from determining an adequate number of workers to hire at the outset or during an expansion, to planning periodic training programs to keep staff aware of organizational changes and new information.


When hospitality businesses expand and grow, there's a need for new workers in new markets. Being able to adequately organize HR functions that will take into account possible cultural and societal issues in a new environment is critical to the organization's success.

The organizing function could also apply to properly organizing job functions into the right positions and organizing reporting functions among staff, management, and departments.


Staffing duties are among the most important duties of a human resources department. The first step is finding and hiring the right people who will be the right fit for your business. They probably need to be outgoing, energetic, and have an ease in dealing with the public.

Recruiting strong employees may require conducting background checks and consulting references who can give insight into the character of the individual for hire. Once hired, human resources should work to properly manage and retain quality employees. That may include appropriate raises, bonuses, and benefits, including discounts and special perks, if possible. Strong employee morale creates an atmosphere where people want to and are happy to work.


Someone in the business must have control and enforcement over various work standards and practices, laws, and regulations. The goal of human resources here is to convey, establish, and enforce policies and procedures among the hospitality business's workforce.

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