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When is the best time to start my Chef Recruitment?

Updated: Feb 7

Chef Recruitment agencies

The Best and Worst Times to Recruit Staff.

Chef recruitment has always been a sticking point for a lot of hospitality businesses. Considering both trade levels throughout the year and candidate movement has always been a tricky balancing act. However, hospitality recruitment can be a little easier; it’s all about timing. The aim of the game is to find the right staff at the right time; timing plays a pivotal role in the recruitment process. In this blog piece, we will look at the best and worst times to recruit a chef. In turn, this will help you make an informed decision to impact your business for the better.

When are the best times to recruit chefs?

The best time of the year is by far January & February. The reason being a lot of people make job-related resolutions and actively seek chef job opportunities in the hospitality industry. Hospitality businesses can benefit and capitalize on this, using the downtime of January to orchestrate interviews and working trials effectively.

Post-Summer Months; September and October.

Chef recruitment also picks up post-summer. After a busy summer period, most job seekers will get some holidays in and start the move for Christmas; it’s also another time where hospitality slows down ever so slightly in trade, so again proves a good time to recruit chefs.

When to advertise

When you are recruiting hospitality staff, we must consider when we are advertising too. For most hospitality staff, days off are usually mid-week, so anything Monday to Thursday is typically a good time to advertise. This also allows the job seeker to make those confidential calls, away from their current workplace.

When are the worst times to recruit chefs?

Avoid peak hiring seasons.

It’s no secret; from March onwards, most hospitality businesses start recruiting for chefs in March, ready for the summer season, which sadly, is just too late a lot of the time. The reason being, proactive hirers have been scooping up the talent pool since January, and when temporary work is in peak demand, full-time candidates simply work for a temporary agency like Chefs for Chefs and then start looking for a permanent job in September, October, and in some instances the following January.

We always advise starting recruiting now using our no placement no fee service.

Christmas & New Year The approach to Christmas is usually a poor time to recruit as most chefs will just naturally wait for the Christmas period to be over, so it’s usually low candidate movement at this time of year. However, this will more than likely pick up in January as previously mentioned.

Spring & Summer months

With temporary work being so popular with a lot of chefs in the industry, they usually prefer to work via an employment business like Chefs for Chefs as they can work in numerous environments on an hourly rate. They would typically start looking for permanent work in Autumn.

During Economic Uncertainty

Especially in times of economic uncertainty, you need to consider whether your business should employ a member of staff or wait it out. This is where we can support using our relief chef service. If you are unsure whether you can commit to a full-time salary, you can consider using a relief chef to support your existing team members on busy days like the weekend. This gives you controllable labor that you can use on a shift-by-shift basis.


Timing is a crucial factor when recruiting and can often determine the success of your recruitment process. By understanding the best and worst times to hire a chef, you can optimise your strategy and increase your chances of hiring top talent in your area.

If you would like to discuss our outsourced recruitment service, please contact us here to discuss your needs.

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