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Efficient Scheduling of Employees in Quick Service Restaurants

Efficient Scheduling of Employees in Quick Service Restaurants

Efficient scheduling of employees in your quick service restaurant is highly important to control labor costs.  If your employees are idle at work or your lack of planning is causing frequent overtime pay, you’ll quickly lose money.  Even if labor costs are only 2% higher than they should be, that means that your net profit is 2% lower.

Factors that Affects Scheduling in Quick Service Restaurants

Volume

Knowing when high and low periods of customer demand occur is essential to proper scheduling.  Therefore, it’s important to be adequately staffed for high volume periods and to avoid overstaffing for low volume periods.

Availability of experienced employees

An experienced employee can perform more duties than one with less experience.

Effective Scheduling Techniques

Blind Staffing

Blind staffing is a scheduling method that ignores the restaurant’s current or traditional staffing levels and instead focuses on how many people are physically needed to operate the restaurant. 

Blind staffing begins with completing a Labor Staffing Chart of the restaurant’s labor requirements for each hour of the business day.  Labor staffing charts should be completed for the various days of the week because the pattern and volume of traffic for breakfast, lunch, and dinner will vary depending on which day of the week it is.  Then create the daily schedules based on the labor staffing charts.

Monitor Daily Schedules

After scheduling personnel hours, they must be monitored.  An effective monitoring technique is to compare hours determined by blind staffing to scheduled hours.  Investigate noticeable variances between the two.  Acceptable causes of any excess are staff training and meetings, special clean-up or maintenance projects, employee shift or hour preferences, and unusual customer patterns.  Actual scheduling must recognize the realities of the local labor supply and be flexible (e.g., if the labor chart indicates that one worker is needed for a six-hour shift, scheduling two part-timers for four hours each or scheduling one full-time worker for an eight-hour shift may be the reality).

Minimize Overtime

Federal and most state laws impose a weekly overtime standard, which means that nonexempt (hourly) employees must be paid time-and-a-half for every hour more than 40 that they work in a workweek regardless of how many hours they work in a day (California and a few other states have a daily overtime standard).

1.      Change the workweek so that the busiest part of the week is at the beginning

An employer is free to select any 168-hour period as the workweek for one or more employees.  If a restaurant has designated a Monday – Sunday workweek, then full-time employees may have worked 40 hours by Friday evening.  If they must also work on the weekend, the weekend hours must be overtime hours.  In this situation, it might be better for the workweek to begin on Friday.  If the employees work over the weekend, the employer still has Monday – Thursday to let the employees off when the business is slower and, therefore, avoid overtime hours.

2.      Schedule two employees for more hours

It may be more cost effective to schedule two employees for more hours than one employee for less hours and pay overtime.

Monitor Actual Personnel Hours

1.      Compare actual hours worked with budgeted hours

Actual and budgeted hours are posted to the Weekly Profit and Loss Report.  Some managers calculate an average rate per hour for both salaried and hourly employees, calculate a budgeted labor cost by multiplying the budgeted hours by the average rate, multiply the actual hours by the average hourly rate, and then compare the actual labor cost to budgeted labor cost.

2.      Investigate excess actual hours worked

Managers should monitor hours worked on a daily basis so that personnel costs can be effectively controlled.Allen & Company, PC  - a CPA firm serving Kennesaw, Marietta, Acworth, Woodstock and north Atlanta.  Providing accounting, financial statement audit, taxation, and advisory services for individuals and businesses.  Extensive experience working with franchised quick service restaurants and other franchised businesses.

 

Allen & Company, PC  - a CPA firm serving Kennesaw, Marietta, Acworth, Woodstock and north Atlanta.  Providing accounting, financial statement audit, taxation, and advisory services for individuals and businesses.  Extensive experience working with franchised quick service restaurants and other franchised businesses.