It’s been a tough and uncertain time for casino and hospitality workers over the last 12 months. The pandemic has ravaged the industry and employees who kept their jobs showed up to work through a lot of enhanced health and safety guidelines.
In short, there have been a lot of hoops to jump through to keep guests happy and safe.
Leaders of Hard Rock International (HRI) took notice of the dedication and recently delivered bonuses to thousands of its employees in recognition of the hard work.
“Many employees were very concerned with coming to work, especially during the early days of Covid,” Jim Allen, HRI chairman and Seminole Gaming CEO, said in a recent Yahoo! Finance interview. “So, it really is a thank-you and about them being a long-term member of the Hard Rock family.”
Allen said 10,000 to 12,000 employees received bonuses that ranged between $250 and $1,000 depending on their positions within the company.
Employees in Florida – where Hard Rock’s two flagship casino properties are located in Hollywood and Tampa – were among those who received the bonuses. Employees in New Jersey did as well, where the company operates the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City.
Allen addressed Atlantic City employees virtually when the bonuses were announced in January.
“The dedication of our team members has been crucial to driving the success of our casino resorts, and we are proud that Hard Rock Atlantic City has been able to prevail during these challenging times,” Allen said. “We are committed to the well-being of our valued team members.”
HRI and the Seminole Tribe, which is its parent entity, said it has spent more than $90 million in Covid-19 relief efforts across the company’s portfolio in the form of employee pay after properties were closed, benefit
extensions and grocery gift card distribution.
As properties began to slowly reopen to reduced capacities, the company said it spent millions more to train employees to adopt and enforce Hard Rock’s “Safe + Sound” protocols – cleanliness and safety measures – to put returning guests more at ease.
The protocols included the installation of Plexiglas barriers between slot machines and table game seats. Hand washing stations were built and placed throughout the casinos. Slots were rearranged to promote social distancing and high-touch areas were cleaned more frequently. Guests were also required to undergo temperature screenings, among other measures.