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Mastering Restaurant Staffing: Controlling Employee Expenses

Updated: Jun 7

In the high-pressure world of restaurants, labour costs can feel like a rampaging beast, threatening to devour your profits.But fear not, fellow restaurateur! Here's the key: taming the beast, not slaying it. We'll explore effective strategies to manage employee expenses while fostering a stellar team that keeps your customers coming back for more.

restaurant staffs

Scheduling Sorcery: Predicting the Customer Stampede

  • Ditch the Crystal Ball, Embrace Data: Historical sales data is your weapon. Analyse trends, factor in seasonal rushes, and leverage technology to create data-driven forecasts. Don't get caught understaffed during a Friday night stampede or overstaffed on a sleepy Tuesday afternoon.

  • Scheduling Software to the Rescue: Free yourself from the scheduling headache. Scheduling software streamlines the process, tracks employee availability, and ensures fairness. Plus, it empowers you to create flexible schedules that cater to individual needs and avoid scheduling conflicts, keeping your team happy.

  • The Part-Time Powerhouse: Don't underestimate the part-time crew! A strategic mix of full-time and part-time staff provides crucial staffing flexibility. Part-timers can be your cavalry during peak hours, ensuring optimal service without the full-time benefit burden.

Optimising Staff Performance: From Rookies to Rockstars

  • Cross-Training Crusaders: Turn your team into multi-talented ninjas! Invest in cross-training your staff. This allows employees to seamlessly switch between roles, reducing the need for extra staff during rushes. Plus, it empowers your team with valuable skills and keeps things interesting.

  • Delegation Dexterity: Not all tasks are created equal. Delegate efficiently! Don't waste your hospo Picasso's talents on chopping lettuce. Let newer team members handle simpler tasks while senior staff focus on complex dishes. This maximises efficiency and skill development.

  • Workflow Zen: Is your kitchen in a constant state of controlled chaos? Take a step back and analyse your service and kitchen routines. Streamline prep work. Can servers take on additional tasks during slow periods? Refining your workflow can significantly boost overall efficiency, freeing up valuable labour hours.

Controlling Costs Without Crushing Morale

  • Incentivise Smart Staffing: Turn your team into cost-conscious allies! Consider offering bonuses or incentives to employees who consistently meet or exceed labour cost targets. This rewards responsible behaviour and fosters a sense of ownership, making your team part of the solution.

  • Retention is King (and Queen): High staff turnover is a drain on your resources. Focus on creating a positive work environment that your employees love. Offer competitive wages and benefits, provide opportunities for growth and development, and recognise outstanding performance. A happy and invested team is more likely to stay, saving you the time and cost of constant recruitment and training.

  • Communication is the Key Ingredient: Transparency is key! Keep your team informed about labour cost goals and strategies. When employees understand the bigger picture, they're more likely to be on board with cost-saving initiatives and contribute valuable ideas.


Building Your Dream Team: Partnering with a Reputable Chef Agency

Finding the perfect talent can be a time-consuming challenge. Here's where a reputable chef agency can be a game-changer.

  • Targeted Recruitment: Reputable agencies have a deep understanding of the restaurant industry and its specific staffing needs. They can target their search to find qualified candidates who are a good fit for your restaurant's culture and cuisine.

  • Time-Saving Efficiency: Agencies pre-screen candidates, saving you valuable time and resources. They handle the initial interview process, ensuring you only meet qualified individuals who are genuinely interested in the position.

  • Industry Expertise: A good agency stays up-to-date on industry trends and compensation packages. They can advise you on competitive wages and benefits to attract top talent without overspending.


Remember: Your Staff is the Secret Sauce

By implementing these strategies, you can effectively manage your labour costs while fostering a stellar team that  becomes a competitive advantage, not a burden. A well-trained, efficient, and motivated staff is the heart of any successful restaurant. Invest in your team, empower them to succeed, and watch your restaurant flourish as both a profitable business and a fantastic place to work.


Bonus Tip: Data is your friend! Regularly track and analyse your labour costs. This will help you identify areas for improvement, measure the effectiveness of your strategies, and continuously refine your approach to tame the labour beast and unleash your restaurant's true potential.


Partner with ChefHire Australia today. Our team of experts will help you find the perfect chefs 'Mastering Restaurant Staffing: Controlling Employee Expenses'

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