What Trends Matter Most in 2020

We’ve had the pleasure of spending the past several days at the NGCOA Golf Business Conference and the PGA Merchandise Show. These events really get us excited for the direction that the industry is taking, and it’s always a treat to be featured as a speaker—thank you to the team at NGCOA and the PGA Merchandise Show for inviting me to share my insight. It was such a treat to share some time with leaders of the industry.

A topic that came up time and time again in both the sessions I attended, spoke at, and in casual conversation was what trends are going to keep the industry growing, and what we can do in the coming year to better recruit and retain the best employees. Unsurprisingly, our industry isn’t the only one asking questions like this—Recently, Forbes Magazine released an article tackling the Top 10 HR Trends that Matter the most in 2020. A few really resonated with me, and perhaps you too…

The Blended Workforce

The concept of a blended workforce takes on two meanings—it can mean integration of full-time workers working side by side with contract and gig workers (something that we see becoming ever popular in our industry), but it also means humans and bots working together.

Automation is huge and we are seeing it pop up more and more in the club industry in the form of self-driving greens equipment on the golf course, golf carts that follow behind you, and behind the scenes in the kitchen. The next phase certainly will be relying on technology to perform redundant operations and leave employees more time to spend with members and customers.

The article mentions a Southeast Asian bank that is exploring the option to use chatbots for recruiting high-volume jobs. The initial results to this method have been very positive when it comes to improving screening time efficiencies, and responses to candidate queries. In the club industry, this type of automation may be not too far off into the future to screen potential applicants for seasonal or high turnover positions. It would certainly free up the time of HR managers who are likely wearing many hats to focus on working on onboarding and benefits, and recruiters to focus on more strategic roles.

Corporate Training

Virtual reality may not have reached its full potential in the consumer market yet, but in the realm of corporate training, it is an avenue that is growing exponentially.

As you can imagine, being that we are in the business of strategic planning, executive recruiting, consulting and staff and management training, we find virtual training to be a terrific solution to a growing problem of busy managers doing more with less. What if you were able to equip your employees to be successful from day one by indoctrinating them with consistent messaging about not only your business, but the nuances of industry overall? What if your onboarding process included completing safety and harassment certification and equipping your employees with the tools to communicate with peers and customers? RCS is ahead of the curve in that we already offer these solutions to our customers through RCSU ! And don’t forget, if you are an NGCOA member, you receive preferred association pricing.

We are living in the Experience Economy, where engaging experiences supersede products and services alone. Since employees are creating these experiences, our workforce is arguably one of the most important tangible assets any club has. There are currently more than 7 million vacant roles in the U.S. alone, so we must be prepared in both our retention strategies and also our recruiting efforts.

Whitney Reid Pennell, president of the RCS Hospitality Group (formerly Reid Consulting Services) is a celebrated management consultant, educator and speaker. RCS, the creators of the Food and Beverage Boot Camp™, specialize in operations consulting, strategic planning, food and beverage management, and training programs.

For more information, phone (623) 322-0773; or visit the RCS website at www.consultingrcs.com.

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Whitney Reid Pennell
 Founder & President

Whitney Reid Pennell is the founder and president of the award-winning RCS Hospitality Group (formerly Reid Consulting Services). She is a published author and widely praised seminar leader, with over 20 years of club operations management and consulting experience. 

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