Overcome and Grow
Words by Earnest Lim

While most hospitality businesses are slashing costs and hunkering down, The Hey Co. is bucking this trend with its ever-growing stable of popular F&B establishments

While most hospitality businesses are slashing costs and hunkering down, The Hey Co. is bucking this trend with its ever-growing stable of popular F&B establishments. 

The Hey Co. is a Singaporean multi-brand management group with a mission to bring happiness to the community through hospitality. The company aims to provide an impeccable standard of hospitality while serving fantastic food through its subsidiaries Rolling On Food Pte Ltd and 8 Steps Holding Pte Ltd. You have most definitely heard of their iconic F&B establishments such as Wildfire Burgers, Lil’ Tiger & 8 Korean BBQ (Shaw), amongst others. As a growing hospitality business that maintains high standards across all departments, The Hey Co. has to ensure its staff are adequately trained and resonate with its mission. In a tight labour market, this has proven difficult for the business. 

The management team approached NTUC’s Employment and Employability Institute (e2i) to assist with this challenge. The Hey Co.’s management worked with e2i to develop high-quality and efficient training plans for potential job seekers in the human resources (HR) and graphic design department. The training provided job seekers with the appropriate skills that The Hey Co. required, thereby reducing the chances of a skills mismatch between employer and employee. Through close collaboration with e2i, The Hey Co. onboarded three key employees crucial to the business’ growth plans. Jeraldine Ong joined as a graphic designer while Cameron Bonganay and Jocelyn Ng took up roles in HR. 

Navigating a mid-career switch with e2i & Rolling on Food

Cameron underwent six months of training, transitioning from a restaurant assistant manager to an HR executive with Rolling On Food. She was motivated by the potential of attaining a job that improved her quality of life as Cameron suffered from chronic leg pain due to the long hours of standing in her prior role. Although HR was a completely new field for her, she quickly attained the skills required, such as understanding recruitment flows, employee welfare and processing grant applications. She was highly motivated by the team she worked with throughout the training, believing that collaborative teamwork can resolve any challenge. 

Combining a love for food with relevant skills

Jeraldine trained for six months and had experience as an animator before learning graphic design. She had a passion for graphic design and food; hence, she jumped at the opportunity to acquire graphic design skills while working in the F&B industry under The Hey Co.. Her director encouraged and supported her throughout the six months, which motivated her to hone her graphic design skills diligently. 

 Similar to Cameron, Jocelyn had not received any formal training in HR before taking on the role. She was an accountancy graduate who had always been interested in hospitality and fiercely passionate about food. After finding out about the opportunity online, Jocelyn decided to take the plunge and underwent six months of training. Throughout the training, she learned from mentors who have had decades of HR experience. They taught her legal and payroll processing skills, which were an essential element for Rolling On Food. She found motivation in the co-workers who patiently showed her how to perform her role efficiently and professionally. Her co-workers also guided her to ensure she gained the right skillsets and experience for the job.

Image was taken prior to COVID-19 restrictions. Pictured: Cameron (first from left), Jocelyn (second row, third from left) & Jeraldine (second row, second from right). Image Credit: The Hey Co.

A win for all 

The pandemic and economic climate have made it challenging for businesses and employees alike. However, close collaboration between the e2i and The Hey Co. created opportunities for growth for everyone. Even through such difficult times, The Hey Co. prides itself in building up each of its employees, ensuring they grow alongside the business. With the guidance of e2i, The Hey Co. managed to bolster its team, allowing them to pursue sustainable growth.


Visit https://e2i.com.sg/ for more information

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