Recruiting and retaining skilled staff
“Club operators have to set themselves apart to attract job applicants”
Deniz Aytekin, the founder of fitnessjobs.de, is interviewed about skilled labour shortages in the fitness industry and shares recruiting tips.
fitnessjobs.de was established in 2017. At times where skilled labour shortage affects all sectors in Germany, this sector-specific job exchange wants to counteract the permanent demand for staff. It focuses on the fitness and rehabilitation sectors from commercial staff to trainers and therapists. Deniz Aytekin is also the founder and general manager of fitnessmarkt.de, the marketplace for fitness and therapy equipment. Over 100,000 website visitors browse this portal monthly for relevant offers and also for vacancies. fitnessjobs.de is therefore incorporated in fitnessmarkt.de. Since March 2019 FIBO has also cooperated with Jobbörse.
Deniz Aytekin has an excellent knowledge of human nature. He’d better have since in addition to his function as a co-founder and supervisory board member of anwalt.de services AG, as well as founder and managing director of fitnessmarkt.de services GmbH, the 42-year old Nuremberg citizen also acts as a national league and FIFA referee. The DFB referee of the year in 2018/2019 not only regularly keeps 22 professional football players in check at the world’s most well-known stadiums but also his fitnessmarkt.de team with 15 employees in Nuremberg. FIBO interviewed Mr Aytekin about the challenges associated with skilled labour shortages in the fitness industry:
FIBO: Mr Aytekin, the skilled labour shortage in Germany can also be felt in the fitness and rehab sectors. What is your view of this issue and how pronounced is the shortage of skilled labour in our industry?
DA: Staff and skilled labour shortages are prevalent across all industries, ours as well. It’s not easy to find trained and skilled employees. The turnaround in this industry is particularly high since trainer positions, for instance, are often filled with students and temps. This means the courses on offer in university curricula and continuous education are so relevant. Dual studies or courses at various academies lay the foundation for a sound education in the fitness sector.
FIBO: What is expected of good employers today?
DA: Good employers should be reliable and responsible first and foremost. Promises made at job interviews should always be kept. A good employer should involve his employees in decision-making processes and the generation of ideas as far as possible. The more a member of staff can relate to his company the more loyal he will be.
FIBO: What can companies improve? How can they become “sexy” for potential job applicants?
DA: In my view it is key for club operators to set themselves apart. This can be achieved by special advantages and benefits granted to employees. As a first step it is essential to reveal the company behind the vacancy. Is it a club chain or a stand-alone club? How many clubs form part of the chain? How long has the club been around? The more details the better for the applicant to form an opinion. Even team photos make sense to ensure a winning appearance from the outset.
FIBO: What should be considered for online recruitment? Which tips can you give us for the “perfect job ad”?
DA: As I already mentioned, standing out from other vacancy ads makes all the difference. If there are any videos available for the vacancy the ad should definitely feature a link to them. In a video, existing team members could explain to applicants exactly why this is the perfect workplace for them. Videos are up to date and arouse more interest than just text. On top of this, the ad should include comprehensive company details and incentives for job starters such as further training, courses etc. offered by the employer.
FIBO: Mr Aytekin, why did you establish fitnessjobs.de?
DA: The underlying idea was primarily to establish a job exchange exclusively for the fitness industry. A platform for the sector to find information and network. The vacancies offered are so wide and varied. Since we have already been doing precisely that – connecting people – with fitnessmarkt.de since 2013 the idea seemed very obvious.
FIBO: And how does fitnessjobs.de differ from other online job exchanges?
DA: First and foremost, by focusing on just one sector. Big job exchanges such as stepstone, monster.de and the like are broad-based and offer vacancies in all industries. With fitnessjobs.de we only address the fitness and health sectors where we target equipment manufacturers and distributors as well as rehab centres and fitness clubs.
FIBO: Since March this year fitnessjobs.de has cooperated with FIBO. How does this cooperation work exactly and how does it benefit companies?
DA: By cooperating with FIBO the platform enjoys a far wider reach in the sector. Since all relevant exhibitors and trade visitors are represented at this trade show, FIBO now boasts its own job exchange that it can place at its customers’ disposal. Thanks to a physical fitnessjobs.de stand visitors can also find information “offline” at the trade show itself. In cooperation with FIBO we offer club operators and trade show exhibitors regular activities allowing them to place job offers at discounted rates.
FIBO: Thank you very much for the interview Mr Aytekin.