We just wrapped up HourMinds 2017 and are still buzzing from all of the great content, conversations and FUN from Snagajob’s annual industry conference.


If you couldn’t make it to Charleston for this year’s event—or even if you did and you couldn’t make every session you wanted!—we’ve compiled three days, 10+ hours and 25 sessions worth of amazing content into one blog with the top five takeaways for owner/operators.


Here are the five most important things you should know out of HourMinds 2017:



1) Candidates want an application process that feels like (and takes as long as) buying items on Amazon Prime

Candidate experience was a big theme this year and a trend no one saw going away anytime soon. The opposite, in fact. And while you might be thinking only bigger brands and HR professionals have time to worry about things like improving candidate experience, it’s crucial to standing out to high-quality candidates and getting enough of them to apply to your jobs.


And with 82% of hourly job seekers searching for jobs from their phones, how mobile-friendly your application process is plays a huge part in how great your applicant experience is. Look for hiring solutions that offer mobile-friendly job postings and job application that make it quick and easy for candidates to find and apply to your jobs from their phones.


Get more tips on how to format your job postings to make them more mobile friendly in our recent ‘Mobile Job Search’ blog.


2) Gig economy: Here to stay or passing fad?

There’s a lot of buzz around how the Gig Economy will continue to impact service industry businesses and hourly workers. And whether it’s proving out to be a great cost-saving opportunity or just a huge pain for employers.


Whichever side you fall on, there’s no denying the Gig Economy is a growing trend and something both independent owner/operators and large national chains will have to deal with over the next few years. Harris Bornstein of Sterlingbackcheck cited 81% growth in the gig economy within the last 4 years alone, fueled by behemoths like Uber and even—whose founder, chairwoman and CEO Sheila Lirio Marcelo gave her own keynote on the future of work at HourMinds.


All in all, the gig economy hits on some of the factors hourly job seekers rank highest in what they look for in an hourly job: flexibility. “Having a flexible schedule” was the #1 employment-related topic hourly job seekers ranked as most important to them … below “Ability to further skills/education”(#3) and “Minimum wage increase” (#5).


The challenge of the Gig Economy for employers lies in the hiring volume, compliance and scheduling complexity it adds. Which brings us to HourMinds takeaway #3.


3) Scheduling: the next big differentiator

There was also a lot of talk about scheduling, and rightfully so. As a small business owner/operator, you may not hire that many new employees all that often, but you do have to create a shift schedule every week. And for your hourly workers, easy, convenient, MOBILE access to their  work schedules is huge for their happiness.


Real-time communication tools that make it super simple and engaging to swap shifts and pick up extra hours is where scheduling software is headed. Even if you CAN create schedules via paper or Excel spreadsheet and tape it to the back wall, you shouldn’t. Apart from being a terrible experience for your Millennial/Gen Z workers, you’re likely missing a lot of labor-cost optimization opportunities that the new generation of scheduling tools can give you.


4) Hourly turnover is up an average 22% … and climbing

The historic low turnover rates of the Great Recession have been steadily climbing since and are now nearing historic highs. TDn2K presented restaurant industry data around rising turnover rates over the last 3 years—which are up 42% in the QSR segment alone.


Turnover costs are up, too, and is one of the biggest hits to the labor costs line item which has a huge impact on small business’ bottom lines. Getting ahead of why employees leave is crucial to keeping great people in your business, attracting high-quality candidates and staying (or getting) profitable. TDn2K placed the cost of replacing each hourly employee at $2,490 and each restaurant manager at $15,271.


Use pre-hire screenings like assessments and background checks to make sure you’re putting the right people in the right jobs upfront.


5) gifs are amazing

It’s not ALL work. We have a little fun at HourMinds, too!


That’s a wrap! Stay tuned for more HourMinds 2017 videos, presentations, highlights over the next few weeks. And we’ll see you at HourMinds 2018!