If you’ve ever worked in F&B, you’d know that it’s a tiring and thankless job. Long hours on your feet, rude customers, physically demanding roles- the list of horrors goes on and on. But the game seems to have changed for the workers at Din Tai Fung’s Orchard branch.
The restaurant chain, the go-to joint for xiao long bao in Singapore, recently established a staff lounge in a 1,550 square-foot apartment in Lucky Plaza Apartment. The lounge is located five minutes away from the chain’s Paragon and Wisma Atria outlets. Not only does it have great views of the Orchard skyline, but also has rooms with beds for employees to nap, shower facilities, vending machines for food, and Wi-fi.
It even has a massage parlour, made possible due to a partnership with the Singapore Association of the Visually Handicapped. The staff break of dreams.
It cost $70,000 to set up and $20,000 per month to maintain- no small sum.
These luxuries are all for a good reason.
BreadTalk Group’s (which runs the Din Tai Fung chain in Singapore) restaurant division CEO, William Cheng, told Business Insider that he first thought of the idea for a private rest area for staff (complete with amenities like WiFi, showers and beds) about four years ago, when the Government began introducing the foreign worker levy.
The company said that staff attrition for 2018 was about 25 per cent – lower than the national average of roughly 30 per cent.
“Hiring and retaining staff has consistently presented a challenge in this industry,” Cheng said, adding that the lounge would help staff feel valued and cared for. The company aims to have seven lounges by the end of 2019, with two lounges opening in April at Junction 8 and BreadTalk HQ.
The brand wants to “transform the food services industry here into an attractive sector for locals to venture into in the long-term” by offering better welfare and benefits for staff.
Apart from offering a lounge, the company is also reducing staff hours from an alternate five-and-six-day work week to a five-day work week.
Well, looks like it’s time to get a job at Din Tai Fung.