3 Ways Restaurants Can Take Care of Their Waitstaff

In today’s market, good people are hard to keep—and even harder to find. COVID-19 created massive disruptions and changes for the restaurant industry, and many operators are still feeling those impacts. Today, the challenge of recruiting and retaining employees in the restaurant industry persists. During a labor shortage, taking care of the employees you have is more important than ever.

Why? Your waiters and waitresses are the face of your restaurant. Ensuring that they have a great work culture where everything runs efficiently, also helps ensure that your customers have a positive dining experience. 

Recent data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that more restaurant employees are quitting than in any other industry. And in another study, researchers estimated that restaurant owners are losing an average of around $150,000 a year due to employee turnover alone.

It’s safe to say that investing in your employees not only serves them but your business as well. If you’re wondering, “how can I take care of my restaurant employees?” read on to learn how.

Listen to Your Team

There’s no one who knows your business better than you—right? Maybe not. While you’re certainly an expert, your front and back-of-house teams are your boots on the ground. They see the way your restaurant operates day in and day out and they have valuable input on how your business runs. Listen to the ideas they have, whether that be on POS software updates, scheduling issues, or customer complaints.

Younger generations, particularly Gen Z, want to feel connected to the larger business they are supporting. If they aren’t queued into the “why” and mission of your restaurant, they might feel disconnected and less motivated. Consider creating weekly team meetings where you discuss how last week’s sales impacted the restaurant.

Further, more than half of restaurant workers say that flexible scheduling would greatly affect their happiness at work. Listen to what your team wants when it comes to scheduling, and make sure you’re giving them the tools to make scheduling and swapping shifts easier.

Work Better, Together.

Communication is everything, so having a scheduling system in place that keeps you and your staff on the same page is an important part of creating a healthy work environment. With Beyond Employee Scheduling you can forecast your labor needs, plan employee shifts, and organize your team with intuitive workforce management software.

Your employees can easily log in to view their schedules, request days off, set preferred shift times, update availability, and swap shifts with other employees. You and your managers can quickly approve or reject shift requests, making the whole process easier for everyone. Your waitstaff will always have access to the info they need when they need it. 

You can also pull data to help make critical decisions for your business. Beyond’s software gives you actionable insights from your employee scheduling data using robust, intuitive reporting and analytics. You can create and tailor prebuilt reports or custom dashboards to manage your business goals with conditional formatting, custom metrics, clear graphs, and email or text alerts. 

Make Shifts Run Smoother

If your checkout is cumbersome, it slows down the efficiency of your team and negatively impacts your customer’s experience. Invest in a POS system that works with your restaurant—not against it. Take the time to train your team on all the tools your restaurant uses—and you’ll not only have a better skilled team, but a happier one.

Consider adding systems that help eliminate problems before they arise. For example, adding a Virtual Terminal to your lineup can help your team keep your restaurant running even when the power or internet is out. A Virtual Terminal turns your computer or phone into a terminal, so when there are long lines or the internet is out, your waitstaff will have a solution that keeps both them and your customers happy. 

When you make decisions that positively impact your staff, you’re ultimately making decisions that will positively impact your overall business. Simply put, you can’t afford to lose your good employees. Ensuring your team has proper training, tools, recognition, and feedback can go a long way in the success of your business.

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