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4 Ways Restaurant Labor Management Software Can Benefit Your Business

December 7th, 2023

A photo of 6 employees in a restaurant standing and smiling, representing the benefit of using labor management software - SkyTab - Shift4

From conflicting schedules to mistakes in payroll, mismanagement can lead to out-of-control labor costs and turnover. And when a restaurant loses a valuable employee, that loss is felt everywhere. Managing and retaining a skilled workforce has always been a moving target for restaurants, but that’s especially true in today’s market.

It’s no secret that restaurant employee turnover rates are high; it was 14%-24% higher in 2022 than in 2019. And, with the average cost of employee turnover being around $5,864 per person, you can’t afford to lose employees — especially to poor management.

Your restaurant must put effort into managing employees properly and keeping them satisfied. That’s where restaurant labor management software comes in. With the right software, your restaurant can appropriately compensate employees while keeping labor costs low and maintaining a fully staffed business.

Let’s look at how restaurant employee management software can take your business to the next level.

What is Restaurant Employee Management Software?

Restaurant employee management software helps restaurant owners efficiently manage their team’s shifts and payroll while complying with labor laws. With labor management software, managers can:

  • Create staff schedules
  • Manage timecards
  • Monitor shifts and overtime
  • Review and approve time off requests
  • Comply with labor regulations
  • Connect with staff in real-time

And that’s just the tip of the iceberg! Labor management software is vital for restaurant owners and managers to monitor staff, keep them happy, and maintain efficient operations.

Let’s dive into the specific features you can expect to find in any modern restaurant labor management system.

Schedule Builder

Do you usually spend hours every week manually arranging schedules on paper or in a spreadsheet? Restaurant scheduling software makes building schedules and managing your team’s availability easy.

You can schedule shifts in just a few clicks, with details like date and start and end times. The software makes it easy to assign individual shifts or post a shift opportunity for anyone to pick up. You can even copy shifts to multiple days of the week and create templates to streamline scheduling even more.

A screenshot of SkyTab Workforce showing how shifts can be edited.

Availability affects your scheduling significantly — your employee management software can help you manage that, too. Set recurring availability, approve or decline availability requests, and request availability if you need extra coverage on a specific day or time.

Payroll Management

Payroll doesn’t have to be a headache for your restaurant’s managers. With employee management software, payroll is a breeze.

Labor management software can help you keep track of shifts, making it easy to approve, create, edit, print, and export timecards. You can also stay on top of overtime costs, gaining complete visibility into every minute worked. This software even makes exporting payroll as a CSV file simple to streamline accounting further.

A screenshot of SkyTab Workforce showing employee timecards.

Cloud-Based Mobile App

You shouldn’t need to be tied to a computer to manage your restaurant’s employees. Luckily, modern employee scheduling software offers user-friendly, cloud-based mobile apps for managers and employees.

With an employee management app, managers can quickly build work schedules, manage availability, and keep track of time clocks. The app can also notify managers when an employee submits a time off request, swap and drop request, etc.

Employees can use the app to access their schedules and request time off conveniently. They can be notified when a shift opportunity is available or if there’s an important notice regarding their upcoming shift.

SkyTab Workforce mobile app

A mobile app like SkyTab Workforce makes it easier for managers and teams to communicate in real time so the whole team can stay in sync. In-app group message functionality allows managers and employees to separate work and personal conversations easily.

Labor Law Compliance

As a manager or restaurant owner, you want to do right by your employees. That means staying compliant with all labor laws that apply to your business. However, ensuring that every shift is compliant can be challenging — which is where employee management software comes in handy.

When scheduling shifts with your labor management software, it will automatically detect any compliance issues and will issue a warning for each one. This way, you can clearly and instantly see what the issue is so that you can quickly rectify it.

A screenshot of SkyTab Workforce showing compliance warnings.

Labor management software like SkyTab Workforce can help you set, warn, and restrict things like:

  • Breaks: You can automatically allocate paid and unpaid breaks based on an employee’s scheduled shift duration. You can also compensate for missed meal breaks and restrict employees from clocking back in early from breaks.
  • Penalty Rates: These rates compensate employees for hours worked during a specific time of the week. For example, Saturday employees may get a 150% base rate.
  • Holiday Rates: These rates are applied to shifts on public holidays. You can specify which holidays your business recognizes.
  • Overtime Rules: You can use these rules to determine how overtime is calculated daily and weekly. You can also set a maximum number of consecutive days staff members can work overtime in a week.

4 Benefits of Using Restaurant Employee Management Software

Obviously, labor management software can do a lot for your restaurant. We’ve covered several core features, but how can those features directly benefit your business? Let’s dive into four concrete ways employee management software can improve your restaurant operations.

1. Better Scheduling

On average, restaurant managers spend 3.14 hours weekly on employee scheduling when they use a spreadsheet. Considering how complicated manual scheduling can be, that’s not surprising.

With employee management software, all of the tedious tasks in the scheduling process can be automated. Since the software automatically factors in availability, you can quickly get an overview of how many hands you can have on deck at any given time.

From shift drops and shift swaps to split shifts and time off, labor management software can help you stay on top of it all.

2. Satisfied Employees

Like any relationship, communication is key — that goes for managers and employees, too. HubSpot found that 70% of employees saw improved communication when using digital tools at work. So, the easier it is for employees and managers to communicate, the more satisfied your employees will be.

Employee management software with built-in communication tools, like SkyTab Workforce’s mobile app, makes it easier for employees to stay in touch with their managers and see their schedules.

Knowing when they’ll be working ahead of time allows employees to better plan their lives outside of work, which is vital for keeping them satisfied. And, with the power to set their availability and submit time off requests right from their phone, they can manage their schedule on the go.

3. Lower Costs

Without an easy way to monitor employees, labor costs can get out of control — and hurt your restaurant’s bottom line. Eighty-nine percent of restaurant operators find labor costs a significant challenge, so finding a solution is critical.

Restaurant labor management software gives you insight into your payroll at the click of a button, giving you a clear picture of every employee’s timecard.

Keeping track of hours and identifying team members working overtime can help you reduce costs and improve efficiency. If you find employees frequently working overtime, you can investigate and streamline the process causing the issue. You’ll spend less on overtime and improve processes along the way.

4. Efficient Operations

The main benefit of any automated software is its ability to streamline tedious tasks that may have taken hours of manual work in the past. That’s no different for labor management software.

The less time you spend mulling over the week’s schedule, the more time you have to run your business. Whether you’re building a schedule in seconds with a template or being instantly notified of compliance warnings, you’re saving precious time that can manifest into profit elsewhere.

Boost Your Business Efficiency with Restaurant Labor Management Software

Management matters when running a successful restaurant. Your staff is the lifeblood of your business — so you need the right tools to keep things moving like clockwork.

Thanks to restaurant labor management software, you can take the headache out of managing your restaurant’s employees so you can put that energy into running your business. With this software in place, you can:

  • Build schedules that keep your business running and your employees happy
  • Adequately compensate employees and comply with legislation
  • Take charge of your staff’s schedule at a moment’s notice
  • Keep labor costs down by monitoring overtime and inefficiencies

Automated tech is all about simplifying tedious tasks and ensuring that operations run smoothly, so take advantage of it! Your employees — and your profit margin — will thank you in the end.