Recognising good service – How to motivate and reward staff

Being well organised, legally compliant and incentivising staff at your holiday park will lead to a productive and loyal work force.

Organised chaos

It is essential that all parks have a staff induction and training process. This ensures that an employee begins their employment correctly, knowing what the business is about and their role within it. Where staff are a vital part of the customer experience, it is also essential to ensure the workforce are aware of their duties and capable of conducting them.

Not only that, but if an employer has a clear record of having spent time training its employees, in the event that their performance dwindles or a claim is issued, employers will have the ability to demonstrate having acted reasonably in providing all of the information required for them to carry out their role to an acceptable standard.

In addition, all staff need to be provided with an employment contract, including a staff handbook with appropriate policies within it and this should be provided at the outset of their employment.

Likewise, it is excellent strategy to keep personnel files for each of your employees, recording absence levels, holidays, training records and disciplinary/performance issues. Absence can occur for a multitude of reasons but failure to keep a record can lead to serious illness or disability being missed by an employer.

Happy families

It’s no secret that the majority of holiday parks are family run. Even the best of families have disputes. They can fall out, argue and even part ways. No employee will be motivated to work hard after spending the day hearing management arguing. Mutual respect throughout the workplace is key to running a happy ship.

Using appropriate communication should also be adhered to. Emails can often read bluntly, letters ought to be kept to formal correspondence and texts/Whatsapp messages ought not to be used as a means to communicate disciplinary action or dismissal.

Appraisals can play an integral role in staff development. Employers ought to meet with their employees every 6-12 months to agree targets, talk about successes and failures and where the business is heading. Employers who operate a transparent forum for employees to give feedback and share ideas are often those who find and retain loyal, well-motivated employees rather than those who practice an “us and them” type mentality.

Minimum wage, minimum effort

This brings us to the subject of wages. Firstly, pitch fees don’t count towards minimum wage. Informal arrangements with park wardens who work occasionally in return for a pitch fee can sometimes turn sour and at the end of the day, failure to pay minimum wage can be a criminal offence.

It is fair to say that unskilled labour is not going to warrant an incredibly generous wage, however employment benefits and recognition of hard work is not all about wages. Employees should be rewarded for loyalty and going above and beyond their remit. Remember that small gestures go a long way when it comes to staff (this can include a bonus or an end of season meal out/awards presentation).

David Ward

David Ward
Associate Solicitor
Employment Team
DWard@LawBlacks.com

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