As seasonal visa restrictions and caps squeeze businesses, employers look inwards to attract Americans with an innovative new program. Guaranteed hours, full salary, tips, bonuses, and free housing are just some of the new perks being offered to woo employees as Mobilize Jobs launches its inaugural summer season. Earlier this month, an excited group of young American workers landed on the Massachusetts coast to start their new summer work/travel adventures. Mobilize Jobs, an innovative staffing program that has just launched in America, is deploying its first group of candidates to tourism, hospitality and food services jobs in Cape Cod and Martha’s Vineyard.
The program, which connects unemployed Americans with jobs in tourism destinations across the country, works on a rotational basis throughout the year. “Mobilizers” move from location to location each summer and winter season, which means businesses have a constant source of candidates who are eager to work.
It’s an innovative solution to current labor shortages, particularly for employers like resorts and hotels that traditionally struggle to fill roles with local workers. According to a 2017 National Restaurant Association report, 37% of members said recruitment was their top challenge, up from 15% just two years ago. Hotels and restaurants are being forced to get creative to staff up – and Mobilize is one of the solutions they’re turning to for help.
American businesses in the hospitality and tourism sector, especially those in remote or resort settings, often face labor shortages that affect day-to-day operations. Mobilize is a unique solution to that challenge, connecting American job seekers with awesome employers who experience a shortage. The program offers workers free accommodation plus the chance to see different parts of the country and gain work experience. It’s a win-win for everyone – businesses taking part in the first season wholeheartedly agree.
“As soon as we heard about the Mobilize Jobs program, we knew this could be the answer for many of Cape Cod’s employers,” says Wendy K. Northcross, CEO of the Cape Cod Chamber of Commerce. “This creative approach to matching seasonal work opportunities with travel and learning experiences is a perfect solution for our region’s peak summer business needs!”
“The greatest limitation we face is the intense shortage of seasonal labor in our region, so we are committed to exploring this interesting business model,” says Beth Colt, owner of Woods Hole Inn, Treehouse Lodge, and Quicks Hole Tavern & Taqueria in Cape Cod. “We are committed to recruiting American citizens to seasonal Cape Cod jobs, and are excited by our new partnership with Mobilize.”
Chris Hohmann, who owns AA Island Auto Rental in Martha’s Vineyard, is also excited by the possibilities.
“In the past, we have relied on foreign workers on J1 Visas. This was effective for us for a long time, but recent changes in immigration policy have made it more difficult to do so,” he says. “Finding American workers also posed some challenges, as we were competing with other island companies that were able to offer more financially to workers.”
“We chose Mobilize to partner with because they are able to do a lot of the leg work for us and have access to a far larger pool of candidates. We were also attracted to the entire onboarding process (at Mobilize Jobs), as an additional challenge we often dealt with is not having enough time to properly train new employees before the season began. Having some of that work completed for us before the Mobilizers arrive is particularly enticing,” added Hohmann.
And it’s not just business owners who are excited about the program – workers are enthusiastic about it, too.
“I’m extremely excited for the opportunity to travel and meet new people,” says Martinez Wilson from New Jersey, a Mobilize worker deployed in the program’s first American season in Massachusetts. “Mobilize has been there from the start, assisting and informing me of all the details.”
“We are thrilled to be in the American workforce for the first time,” says Benjamin Guth, Mobilize Founder and President. “Our program benefits workers and businesses alike – tourism and hospitality employers get a continuous source of enthusiastic American workers from all over the country, when and where they need them; and the young Americans get a chance to travel to different parts of the country and gain valuable work experience!”
“With the right mix of adventure and employment experience, we can fill most open roles with enthusiastic fellow Americans,” adds Guth.
Mobilize has been a success story in Canada over the last three years, with 750+ Mobilizers placed in positions across the country – and it’s growing every season!
“With our ethical approach and proven recruitment process, we deliver great fit candidates that solve labor challenges for businesses,” says Guth. “Stay tuned – Cape Cod and Martha’s Vineyard are only the beginning! While the program is still in its pilot season, we have already begun signing up both job seekers and interested employers for the winter season.”