6 Steps to Writing a Restaurant Schedule to Control Labor Cost

 In 1. David Scott Peters, Employees, Labor, SMART Systems, Training

Are you struggling with handing over writing the restaurant schedule to your managers? I get it! Writing a restaurant schedule can be challenging. You have to have the right number of people for the right shifts. You have to make sure everyone gets days off and that they’re not opening and closing back to back (clopening).

Handing a manager the schedule without teaching them how to do it right sets you up for failure. Too many people? Money is ticking on the time clock. Not enough staff? Guests who are not having a good experience.

But you want to give up control of scheduling because with the right systems to teach your managers how you want it done, you’re free to take on bigger aspects of your business that get you to profitability.

Here are just a few tips covered in the video:

  1. Schedule your senior staff first! They have worked for you the longest, and they expect the favor of getting the best slots.
  2. Have a master schedule that shows you who can work when. It’s a cheat sheet that makes every week easier to schedule.
  3. Your employees appreciate the flexibility of working in a restaurant. And although a request isn’t a guaranteed fulfillment, requesting time off should be a system. Keep it all in once place, next to the office door, where everyone can see who is requesting what and when.
  4. Treat your staff humanely! No clopens (watch the video to learn what the heck a clopen is)! And give them two days off in a row (really!). They deserve to recharge to be their best for your guests. And have a staffing guide that outlines how to schedule your employees.

Following the steps outlined in this video will save you time and ease your stress. It will also keep employee morale high. And when morale is high, so is productivity. It’s definitely a win-win situation.

To learn more tips for writing a foolproof restaurant schedule and how to control labor cost,  read our special reportBreaking Away from the Insanity: How to easily take control of your restaurant and make more money. Download it here

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