Successful labor cost management relies on proper restaurant shift management, which involves a blend of proven processes, flexibility, and effective programs that can be utilized to minimize labor costs and maximize productivity. Here are four tips that will help you better manage shifts in your restaurant.
Look at the Stats
What’s your typical Tuesday lunch sales? How about Thursday happy hours? Before you can effectively schedule shifts, you need to know, on average, how busy you will be. Though there will always be some fluctuation, having stats from the previous months will help you forecast the future.
Take Server Performance Into Consideration
It’s a fact of restaurant management that some of your team members will be
much more productive than others. If you know that Jenny can easily handle six busy tables while Sam gets overwhelmed with four, you can schedule your higher performing staff for peak times. You can also ensure that you don’t end up scheduling all of your lower-performing staff during the same shift.
Have a Backup Plan
It’s easy to schedule shifts when everything goes perfectly. Unfortunately, that’s rarely the case. Do you have a backup plan if one or more of your cooks or servers calls in sick? What about if a party of 50 unexpectedly comes through your door wanting dinner and drinks? If you don’t have a plan, you’re just asking for trouble. It’s always advisable to not only have a plan B, but also a plan C.
Consider Software that Can Help
Time spent wrestling weekly schedules is important, but wouldn’t you rather spend some of that time with customers or on business development? When you implement restaurant management software, you gain a powerful tool that can help create schedules based on your unique shift coverage criteria, as well as, reduce food costs, boost sales, create reports, and a whole lot more.
Controlling labor costs is one of the ways to improve your restaurant’s bottom line. When you consider these tips for effective shift scheduling, you can create an efficient schedule that reduces labor cost without reducing customer satisfaction.