We caught up with our Head of Hospitality, Michael Perry, on his hospitality background and journey to Coople. We also got insights into his plans to shake up the industry, as well as his favourite drinking and dining spots in London.
Tell us a bit about yourself
Originally from Wolverhampton, a lovely town in the West Midlands, I have worked in 8 different cities in the UK. I started out as a part-time barman while studying A-levels. I then went straight into full-time management with Revolution bars group in 2002 as Deputy GM and I worked my way up to GM, Area Manager and then Regional Operations Manager where I was responsible for 35 Revolution bars across England. As a result, I have personally experienced all aspects of operational challenges and pain points of management and recruitment within bars and restaurants.
What do you do at Coople?
I am responsible for driving new business in the bars and restaurants sector while supporting client’s needs with fast and effective account management. With my hospitality operations background, I provide solutions for clients in a fast and efficient manner to minimise the impact on their operations.
What do you love about your job?
I am passionate about people, the industry and growing people’s careers through people management and being able to do that at Coople is great. I love the energy of a start-up company, everyone has the same passion and the same drive to change how the world works. Our technology and offering not only helps people get access to flexible work but also supports our clients by sourcing affordable flexible staff on-demand.
What is something you want to deal with and fix within the hospitality industry?
As recruitment challenges get tougher in the industry, I want Coople to partner with as many businesses as possible to help support the industry to help them maximise revenues by filling temporary roles.
What interests do you have outside of work?
I am a Chelsea fan. I enjoy following the football and taking in all that London has to offer.
Favourite place to eat, favourite place to drink in London?
Favourite place to eat in London: Hakkasan
Favourite place to drink: A good traditional London pub
We also spoke to our Head of Training and Quality Assurance, Ignat Kostadinov, on his background and journey to Coople. Click here to read Ignat’s story.
Ali started the Hospitality Futures programme after being unemployed for over six months. With a young family to support, Ali was feeling under pressure to find something that would not only lead to a secure and rewarding career but also have the flexibility he required to manage his family commitments. As he didn’t have much work experience or a university degree, he began to feel a bit desperate about his situation and future.
It was in September 2017 at his local job centre that he came across the opportunity to be on The Springboard Charity Hospitality Futures Programme. Hospitality was an industry he had never considered before, but he thought the programme sounded exciting and so he quickly signed himself up.
Ali performed amazingly and sailed through the programme. With his confident but inclusive personality, he was a positive influence on everyone around him. Indeed, it was evident that his naturally bubbly personality and sunny disposition made him a great fit for the industry.
At the end of the programme, Ali had to decide where he wanted to do his work placement, and he decided that he wanted to try food and beverage service, as the inter-personal aspect and practical nature of the job really appealed to him. It was then that he discovered Coople, Europe’s largest on-demand staffing platform – who is a corporate patron of The Springboard Charity – to find flexible jobs in hospitality that he required to support his family.
While working flexibly with Coople, Ali had the opportunity to increase the breadth of his experience by working in different positions in a couple of London high-end hotels, top event venues and renowned restaurants and bars. Ali did especially well with one of Coople’s clients, a 5-star London hotel, and was able to secure a flexible rota to work with that client on a more regular basis, ensuring that perfect time balance between work and family commitments.
He has since been working consistently for over 6 months, honing his customer skills and increasing his experience. Ultimately the roles he has been performing on behalf of Coople have provided him with the chance to support his family whilst also beginning a career where he can thrive. Indeed, Ali continues to flourish as a great success story and has been a regular source of positive feedback from Coople’s clients.
National Waiters’ Day has come and gone. We got the pleasure of meeting First Dates star, Austin Ventour, take part in the waiters’ race and test people on their cocktail making skills. It was a great day to get out and meet the amazing people who make hospitality such an amazing industry to work in.
National Waiters’ Day, founded by Fred Sirieix in partnership with the hospitality charity Springboard, was set up with the idea of celebrating the many opportunities for development and the calibre of staff providing excellent service within the hospitality industry. All the proceeds from the event go back to grassroots to support Springboard’s Food and Beverages programme which helps inspire and educate students who seek a career in hospitality.
Seasoned waiters and waitresses were invited to the event to showcase their skills in the professional waiters’ race and to speak with attendees about their personal experiences within the industry. Hospitality is an inclusive industry and it was great to see people from all walks of life attending and taking part in the day. As one of the many employers exhibiting at the event, we were impressed by the hunger displayed by job seekers.
Count us in for next year!
Click here for our waiter and waitress jobs.
In partnership with Springboard
Last week, the Staffing Industry Analysts (SIA) launched their inaugural ‘European Collaboration in the Gig Economy’ conference. As Europe’s largest on-demand staffing platform, Coople was extremely pleased to attend the coveted event. Our founder, Viktor Calabro, was chosen to be one of the four Dragons for the gig economy Dragons’ Den, voting for the start-up they deemed to have the most chances of success within the sector.
Collaboration in the Gig Economy Conference
John Nurthen, SIA’s Executive Director of Global Research, kicked off the one-day event:
“It’s great to see the world’s largest buyers of contingent labour come together with the supplier community to spend a day exploring ways to collaborate and improve the talent supply chain. This event recognises that wherever you are in that supply chain we can best succeed by empathising and supporting each other.”
Following the keynote panel, SIA President Barry Asin spoke about how the £2.5 trillion gig economy is all about connecting work with workers in a more responsive and flexible way. He said human cloud firms such as Uber have proved that if you “make it easy for people, they will work.” By drastically shortening and simplifying the recruitment process, Coople has also created the possibility for people to find work flexibly in a legal and sustainable way through the platform, where once staff are fully registered, they can simply accept or decline a job notification without the need for long interviews. With flexible staff increasingly wanting autonomy to decide when and where they work, large and small organisations are having to rethink their recruitment processes, looking to offer flexibility all whilst drastically speeding up the response speed at which they fill their jobs.
The Gig Economy Dragons’ Den
To round up the day, the attendees converged on the highlight event of the conference, the gig economy Dragons’ Den. Staffing Industry Analysts chose Dragons which are leaders and influential figures in the world of the gig economy.
- Viktor Calabrò, founder, Coople
- Kelly Griffith, Head of The Adecco Group X UK&I
- Kevin Green, CEO, What’s Next Consultancy
- Bryan Pena, SVP, Contingent Workforce Strategies, CCWP, Staffing Industry Analysts
Providing a great opportunity for each start-up to gain valuable exposure amongst industry leaders, the Dragons listened and judged pitches from a range of innovative gig economy start-ups. The hopeful gig economy newcomers also got the chance to win the very first European Collaboration in the Gig Economy Innovation Award. Pitching under the gaze of the Dragons, the contenders had five pressurised minutes to present their business case of why they thought their business had the greatest potential to succeed within the Gig Economy. Although the finalists had very limited time to introduce and explain their business case, all the pitches were well received and got a round of applause from the audience. After careful consideration, the Dragons crowned their favourite, the staff management software Sirenum as the winner of the European Collaboration in the Gig Economy Innovation Award 2018.
Viktor praised Sirenum’s victory by saying,
“Their go to market strategy was so defined and clearly presented that I believe they have what it takes to take their idea and make a huge success of it.”
New research from Europe’s largest flexible jobs marketplace, Coople, reveals British millennials are a generation of career jugglers, seeking varied lifestyles and accelerated multi-skilled growth, undertaking multi-jobs.
The survey of 2,000 employed people in the UK, carried out by OnePoll and commissioned by Coople, reveals the growing “slash/slash culture” trend, where workers handle more than one – and often wildly different – job simultaneously. The survey shows:
19% of employed millennials have two or more jobs, more than any other generation.
Some of the main reasons cited by millennials for taking on multi-jobs include to learn new skills (47%) and for variety and experience (27%). By comparison, older generations put more onus on increased earnings when stating their purpose for working within multiple roles.
Additionally, the research reveals 1 in 3 young professionals plan on changing industry within the next two years. 13% intend to change industries within the next year.
The findings show the majority of employed 18-24 year olds (37%) have already worked in two other industries prior to their current sector, further underlining a propensity to switch jobs and develop skillsets within this age-group. The percentage of younger people working in multiple industries is much higher than any other age group. It also means that on paper, the average 24 year old has more experience across multiple industries than someone 20 years their senior.
Coople’s research reveals that 48% of millennials say a positive work-life balance is a primary factor for their professional happiness, the highest of any age group.
One of the factors often cited as contributing to a positive work-life balance is flexible working.