Hotelstaff is proud to have been at the service of the hospitality industry for over 30 years, delivering the best hospitality talent solutions for entertainment, sporting, boardroom, schools, hospitals and private events across Melbourne.

However, when our founder Michelle Kleiman arrived from South Africa in 1986 the staffing landscape was very different to where we are today.

“I was more focused on building relationships than the bottom line,” Michelle said. “I thought customer service was missing in the Australian recruitment market and this gave me the idea to start Hotelstaff.”

Michelle’s first marketing campaign was sending out 200 branded chef’s hats to kitchens and hotels around the country. Before she knew it, the phone was ringing hot with requests for staff.

Major developments across the State

During the 1990’s large international hotels were opening in Victoria and Hotelstaff was hired exclusively to manage their recruitment drives.

“It was everything from kitchen hands to the director of Food and Beverage, often in excess of 250 placements,” Michelle said. “Because of my relationships there was an enormous amount of trust with clients. They knew I would be personally involved and my candidates were all high calibre.”

With Michelle’s passion and personal touch, Hotelstaff grew quickly in the early 2000’s and became known as one of the most reliable and trusted recruiters for permanent placements in kitchens around the world.

“It was never a business to me,” she said. “It was all about serving the industry, building relationships and doing what I love.”

It was during this time that Michelle recognised how dramatically technology was changing the hiring landscape, with the market headed in a new direction. In 2014 she hired Nathan Szprinc, who would focus on the increasing demand for casual staffing solutions across Melbourne.

Now the Managing Director and owner of Hotelstaff, Nathan was able to establish Hotelstaff’s brand and service delivery to a growing number of major sporting and entertainment clients.

“We knew it was a risk but if it worked we would become a fully-serviced agency, delivering permanent placements internationally and casual staffing in Melbourne,” Nathan said. “By combining Michelle’s networks with mine, we were able to create an amazing synergy and diversify our service offering.”

The impacts of the global pandemic on hospitality

While Victoria’s hospitality industry was crippled during the Covid crisis, Hotelstaff was fortunate to be involved in the State Government’s Charity Meals Program. Working in the kitchens of Parliament House, our staff helped make over 1.5 million meals between March 2020 and June 2021.

“The Charity Meals Program was an amazing opportunity during a really tough time for the hospitality industry,” Nathan said. “Our people were able to gain much needed regular work and stay engaged with Hotelstaff, while also helping those most in need.”

Even though the hospitality sector is now coming back to life, the impacts of Covid have led to a fundamental shift in how Hotelstaff looks after its talent and services the needs of clients.

“Recent staff shortages have meant we’ve had to rethink how we operate while focusing on managing our talent so they remain loyal to us. Our goal is to be the most talent friendly agency in Melbourne and to help people build a rewarding career in the industry. This ultimately benefits our clients through greater retention of staff.”

Being at the forefront of change in the market has also led to Hotelstaff being named as the exclusive staffing partner for Providoor, an innovative hospitality service that delivers Melbourne’s best restaurant food to people’s homes. “We understand our role in the market and where we can genuinely help clients, so we’re not trying to be everything to everyone,” Nathan said. “Our brand and values have put us in good stead and our team is excited about meeting the challenges that lie ahead.