Our staff are at the heart of what we do.  At Hickory we recognise the value of recruiting and developing the right people.  We take great pride in our team, and recruit and contract all of our own staff meaning we never have to rely on using agency staff.  Our in-house recruitment means that our team are employed, trained, and developed by us and gives us consistency and control over who makes up our team – our staff are a seriously smiley and happy bunch.

But what makes a Hickory team member?  Emma our Staffing Coordinator talks us through what it takes to be a Hickory service member.

Q. What does Hickory look for in a team member?

A. The key thing that we look for us that’s they are a foodie or demonstrate a passion for food and drink! We operate in such a variety of different venues and environments that adaptability is important as well. We like our staff to be able to think on their feet as you never know what the day could throw at you.  Whether it’s a delayed conference party or a last minute change on the day of the event we want our team to be reactive, swooping in to save the day.

Q. Are there any qualities in particular which stand out when recruiting?

A. It’s exciting when you come across someone who is truly passionate about what we do. Whether that’s our food, drinks or venues it’s great when you can hold a discussion and individual’s demonstrate a knowledge and understanding of our business. . Our team are our biggest asset and it’s great that they can teach me things as well.  We have a really talented bunch working with us

Q. What training do Hickory provide?

A. We offer a variety of training methods depending on the individual’s needs and depends on their own career progression goals. What’s great about having an in-house team is being able to watch people’s development throughout their time with us. They may have started unsure of their goals and leave with a clear direction and six new SQA Qualifications! We run a variety of training schemes throughout the year which covers all different elements of the hospitality profession.  It’s really worthwhile helping people uncover hidden talents!

Q. What SQA Qualifications can Hickory employees achieve?

A. We partnered with Flow Hospitality last summer. Flow is an online training system approved by the SQA which allows our employees to receive accredited training qualifications that they can apply to their work. It’s really helped us to push our employees out their comfort zone, but we’ve noticed such a difference in those who undertook it.   Expand a little more on the content and types of courses.

Q. Could you describe a standard day for a Hickory events team member?

A. There really is no such thing as a “normal” day. You need to be prepared for anything, but you always know that it’s going to be lots of fun! Some of the venues we work with we aim to have dedicated teams which gives our venue partners consistency and allows our staff get familiar and settled at a particular venue, this is especially important where we have exclusive partnerships and Hickory team work as an extension of the venue team.

Q. What do you think are the main benefits of having an “in house” team opposed to using agency staff?

A. Other than the fact it adds value to our business, as no other caterer in Edinburgh can claim to not use agency staff.

We want our events to stand out.  We understand that they are special and want to go over and above to ensure that each client’s day is a memorable experience.  Our team have been hand selected because they share these values.  IWe can guarantee that each individual has been trained to our standards and want to push the boundaries, it’s really important to be able to trust that these promises can be delivered.

Q. What opportunities are there for someone willing to progress at Hickory?

A. The sky is really the limit! Most of our full time team started out at our events (including myself) and it’s given us all a great understanding of how each occasion operates. Hospitality is such a broad industry.  We have seen our team transform into Team Leaders, Supervisors, Bar Managers, Wedding Coordinators and Operations Managers to name a few

Q. Any tips for someone looking to apply?

A. Don’t be a stranger! We are a friendly bunch, and always welcome new faces. If you think that you share our ethos then we would love to hear from you.