How Hotel Managers Can Save Time with Online Scheduling Software

11 Apr, 2016 | Tags: , , , ,

As a hotel manager, one of the challenging aspects of your job description is ensuring that all employees work when they’re supposed to. Given the many employees and departments hotel managers have to deal with, there’s no guarantee that every day will run smoothly. In fact, you can probably assume that it won’t!

Employees might not report to work for a variety of reasons and finding someone to cover their shifts can be tough work. Some workers might work overtime and want compensation for the extra hours. Keeping track of the daily employee schedules usually means working long hours, constantly updating records and keeping in contact with departmental supervisors.

But why not automate the processes? Online scheduling software makes it easy to handle employee schedules without going through the daily strains mentioned above. Most hotel managers are adopting this software as a way of managing and saving their time. Some of the ways scheduling software will help you save time include the following.

Accessible anywhere with an internet connection

It’s not uncommon to hear a hotel manager having to abruptly report to work in order to sort out some scheduling issue. Maybe an employee didn’t report to work and the manager is expected to find someone to cover the shift. In such instances, the scheduling system is only available within the hotel offices. Time is wasted traveling to work, sorting through the schedule and contacting possible replacements. With an online based scheduling software, all the hotel manager needs to do is log into their account, filter out employees who are free and contact them. This can be done from anywhere with an internet connection.

Employee input

One of the challenging aspects of creating a daily, weekly or even monthly employee work schedule is determining which hours to assign a particular employee. The process involves a lot of consultations with individual employees. It can also lead to bad relations when some employees are assigned work shifts during hours they don’t like. At the end of the day, employee productivity suffers and this reflects on the hotel’s performance. Hotel staff usually feel comfortable when they have a say about the work and leave hours assigned to them. They will also be more willing to cover for a colleague if they find that the time allocation favors their schedule. Working this out manually can be a headache on the managers part.

However, by using online scheduling software, employees are able to select the work hours they find most suitable for their daily routine. In addition, the software handles issues such as duplicate entries ensuring that each employee works the desired amount of hours every month to get paid. Since the system is web based, each employee can select his or her work and rest hours remotely without having to present themselves at the hotel. For the manager, this means less time spent contacting, consulting and updating the hotel employee work schedule.

Wage calculations

This is another challenging aspect of hotel management. As a manager, you might be handling tens or even hundreds of employees at once. The work schedule is such that you have to account for regular work hours, overtime and even paid leave during each payment cycle. This might require keeping track of every individual employee on a daily basis. That’s a lot of extra hours spent on sorting out the daily wages due to tens of hundreds of employees. Such time can be spent working on other things that relate to the hotel managers job description. An online based scheduling system makes it easy to calculate wages due to each employee. It allows you to easily view the number of hours each employee as worked throughout the month and calculate his or her salary.

Easy to contact employees

Trying to find every employee’s contact information and calling them individually can take up a lot of time. An online based scheduling system makes the process easier and time efficient. Since each employee can insert his or her contact information within the assigned section within the software, this makes it easy for the manager to find such information with a few clicks. In addition, the software allows hotel managers to send a single message to multiple employees at once saving time.

Working as a hotel manager means that most of your time is spent keeping track of employee work schedules and ensuring that each day progresses just fine. You can easily cut down of this time by adopting online scheduling software. The software does most of the heavy lifting allowing you to get more time to attend to other activities that come with the hotel manager’s job description.

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Head Start: Secure Ways to Get Funding for Your Startup

27 Oct, 2015 | Tags: , , ,

While many people may have an idea for how to start their own business, getting the necessary funding may be difficult at best. What many people fail to realize is the many different ways there are to secure funding for a startup business. If you meet certain criteria, you can make the process a little easier and get funded more quickly.

Crowdfunding

A way to reach a variety of people online, crowdfunding has become a popular option for funding a business idea. By using such websites as Kickstarter, people can read about your business idea and donate money to it simply because they like what they see. Many businesses have been able to raise thousands of dollars with this method, so it’s an option that’s definitely worth exploring.

Small Business Grants


New business owners might overlook the numerous grants available to help get the money needed to make their dreams become reality. Businesses that focus on technology, medicine, education, and social services tend to have the most grants available to them, and there are more than 1,000 different grants available from the federal government alone. Online directories are available for searching grant possibilities, making this option well worth the effort.

Bank Loans

An option for those who have excellent credit or enough collateral to put up that will lessen the risk of the bank, loans can be a way to get the necessary financing to start a business. For those who own their homes, a home loan can be a way to raise high amounts of money quickly and easily. Talk to a mortgage agent in Houston at Sente Mortgage about how you might refinance or what you might need to do to qualify for a home loan.

Angel Investors

Becoming a more popular option for future business owners, angel investors are almost always available in metropolitan areas. Most of these individuals are willing to invest up to one million dollars in a business in exchange for a percentage of the profits. So if you have big plans for your business, these investors can make them happen. Make sure you have a strong pitch to sell your point to them.

Family and Friends

An often overlooked source of business financing, family and friends can be a primary source of funding for any startup businesses. Because they want to see the business be a huge success, they are often willing to offer substantial amounts of money and be flexible when it comes to repayment terms.

By exploring these options, people who have dreams of starting their own business can find themselves with many financing options. While it can be difficult to get a business started, taking advantage of these options can go far toward seeing your dreams become reality.


Employee Retention – How to Keep Your Top Performers

09 Sep, 2015 | Tags: , , , , , , ,

Chances are that you know or have seen people that are self-driven.  They work well with others and they excel at their job.  They’re not clock watchers, they want to excel at everything they do, and they always strive to exceed expectations.  Due to their reputation of striving for excellence, they have created an extensive network of cross-connecting with like-minded people and businesses, and their networks continue to grow in size and quality.  They’re the ones that everyone wants, and recruiters (or “headhunters”) can’t wait to connect with them.  When you have outstanding employees of this magnitude, there is always the concern of losing them, especially to competitors.  So the question remains, how do I keep my top performers?  In order to delve into this subject matter further, you must first be aware that your perspective of whom your top performers are might be quite different than someone else’s opinion.  So, be prepared to back-up your opinion with facts, and be able to express them in a private and/or group setting, and in written form.  Remember, you being able to identify top performers can also make you a valuable asset, and yes, a top performer.

Identifying Your Top Performers. 

In order to identify your top performers, you must first be engaged with your staff, and spending time finding what they feel is working well, their concerns, and positive/negative feedback.  They need to feel connected to you and to the company’s purpose (or vision) in order for them to feel comfortable opening up and sharing.  So, build those relationships with your staff and you will build more trust.  After striving for more open communication, you may find out amazing things.   There are instances where managers assume that one employee was responsible for a great idea, problem-solving a customer service issue, or coming up with huge solution to an existing problem, only to find out that someone took credit where credit wasn’t due.  You will also get a better indication of how people within your business react with one another.  Who is spreading negativity, who is spreading gossip?  More importantly, who works well in a team environment?  So, first and foremost, create and nurture those relationships.  Remember, communication is key.

Now that you know who your top performers are, you can better address ways to retain them.   In order to address this challenge, let’s flip it over and look at this from the top performer’s perspective:

What are their needs? 

People are driven by many different motives and what you may assume drives them, may not be it at all.  This is where you need to start digging.  Make sure you’re having informal conversations with these performers; get to know how they tick.  At times, you may want to take them out to lunch, have some one-on-one time with them, and find out what it is that they really want.  Do they enjoy working with the business?  Why or why not?   Figure out what additional training may be beneficial to them and to your company.  Are they looking at your company as potential for long-term growth? What are their short-term and long-term goals?   If not, when you identify what it is that they want, you can better guide them on this path within your organization. What would motivate them to want to stay longer?  Are they open to continuing education?  Would your company reimburse for approved courses.  As they receive more expertise, they should be able to use it in their current job, and/or along their stated career path within your company.  What’s the best part of their job?  Their worst?  Share a little about yourself and ask them to share a little about them.  Find out what do they like to do for fun?  When you are asking and sharing, you can find out what their “whys” are and understand its importance to them.  Share the good qualities that you see in them

Do your business needs and their needs match up? 

No one can see into the future, but it’s important that your outstanding employees see that they are being groomed for better things.  They may not remain if there isn’t a clear path to greater opportunities.  So, what are you making available to them?  We’ve already discussed extra training, and now is a great time to expose them to the next level of work, to get the flavor of it.  You can see how they are responding to this and they are assessing if this is, in fact what they really want too. Continue to keep their goals in front of you both and keep the lines of communication open.

Be a visionary. 

Paint a vision of where you see them in one year and in five years.  Remind them of the opportunities in your company and connect it to their vision. 

Perks.  Who doesn’t like perks?  A gift card for two to a special dinner, a couple of tickets to their favorite sports team game, an afternoon off so they can go see a play their child is performing in.  Raises may or may not be available but potential bonuses might be.  Explore different areas and gear them toward their unique perspective

Name Recognition.  When they do something great, make sure you bring it up in the next meeting when appropriate.  Introduce them to higher ups in the company so interaction naturally happens.  Invite them to your LinkedIn.  And, what a great time to ask them if they know of anyone else that might be interested in the company.  Top performers know other top performers.

At the end of the day, the more an employee sees that you know who they are, appreciate what they do, open up opportunities and connections for them, and paint the same vision, the more chance you’ll have of retaining those top performers.


Why Every Restaurant Needs to Use Scheduling Software

06 Aug, 2015 | Tags: , , , , , , , ,

It’s pretty easy to see that communication is a necessity to any thriving business.  In today’s economy, it’s paramount to have a step-up in your communication whenever possible. The restaurant business can be brutal at times, with small margins and long hours, not to mention all the variables that can quickly turn a successful start to a day into an understaffed nightmare!  Keeping a large crowd waiting too long at the hostess station and you may have just lost potential customers forever.  Between understaffed waiters/waitresses, tables that need to be cleared, food orders getting cold, and special customer requests, many times managers and their employees alike can quickly feel the stress of the situation, and that’s not good for anyone!  That’s where innovative technology comes into play.

Share the Load

Using staff scheduling software can lighten a manager’s load considerably by

  • allowing managers to have the ability to create their schedules from home, if they choose, instead of in the midst of all the commotion in their backroom
  • managers no longer need to cater to all those interruptions from employees asking when they are scheduled to work next
  • they won’t be inundated with scraps of paper with handwritten notes trying to decipher when their employee is requesting some time off
  • since now the employee is responsible for adding their own requests directly into the system, if you try to schedule this employee during an unavailable time, a pop-up will remind you about their request
  • when it’s time to schedule that team meeting, it takes the guesswork and out of wondering if you’ve contacted everyone because now, it’s only a button click away

Think of all the time you’ll save by not having to rewrite a schedule over and over again! 

Employee Approved

Your employees will love using the online employee schedule system too!  They’ll be able to

  • access their schedule via smartphone, or simply check online; no more time wondering when the schedule is completed, or having to run back up to the restaurant to check the board
  • input their own requests for time off, eliminating potential disagreements or friction; no more keeping your fingers crossed in hopes that your manager remembers your request
  • receive reminders for when you’re scheduled to work; no more awkward feelings, wondering if you should call work to find out, or just show up and hope you were scheduled   

The Bar

Another important area of a restaurant that cannot be overemphasized is the bar. If a bartender doesn’t show up due to a lack of communication this can cause a potential great loss in revenue to everyone involved. Using a streamlined bar scheduling software can open up lines of communication and increase a restaurants profits substantially by

  • having each bartender’s hours specifically laid out in such a way that meets everyone’s needs; bars typically open during later hours, and bartenders are typically balancing many schedules throughout their day
  • bartender’s having the ability to put in requests from their smartphone or computer saving them time, and better organizing their daily schedule which expands communication
  • increasing profit margins by keeping the bar open on time and keeping those drinks filled; generating greater profits for everyone
  • keeping the highest profit margin available means that employee hours don’t get cut; everyone in the restaurant can be affected by this    

Now, everything goes directly into the system, all in one, easy to use place!

The folks at WhatTimeDoIWork.comhave made a huge impact to help you save time, improve even the best communication, all while saving you money.  This new innovative scheduling software didn’t happen overnight.  It was developed by experts with over thirty years of scheduling experience who took the time to sit down and listen to what managers and their employees both needed and wanted to become more successful.  Taking all their data into consideration, this team has developed a polished system where everything transpires in one place and can be accessed any time, day or night, from any place in the world.  They have produced the gift of giving you less stress and making life easier, while at the same time allowing you more time to work on those other important tasks for your business, you know, the ones listed under all those other papers that you can now throw away!


3 Ways to Promote Restaurant Staff Communication

06 Jul, 2015 | Tags: , , , , ,

Restaurant staff members are like family, and as such, they act like family. That means they love each other, but they can also have moments of serious conflict. Any restaurant owner or manager knows how easy it is to succumb to the “family life” in the restaurant business. But no owner wants to play the parent when things go sour. Here are some ways you can start promoting a professional atmosphere without losing the family feel that makes working in the restaurant business so much fun. One of the most important things you can always work on in the restaurant world is promoting lines of communication between staff, BOH and FOH, and managers.

1. Pre-Pop Meet-Up

You know the busiest times for you restaurant. Sometimes the most helpful way to promote healthy staff chemistry is by looking ahead for trouble. When servers and cooks are the busiest, that’s when they are most likely to make mistakes. By gathering the back of house and front of house for pre-pop meet-ups, you’re acknowledging as a manager that things are about to get busy, but you should take the time to ask your staff, “what do we need to get through this busy shift as a strong and capable team?” By doing this you’re making everyone feel involved and ready to take on the busiest points of their shift. Also by coordinating these pre-shift meets, you’re creating an atmosphere of professionalism in the workplace.

2. Open Door Policy

One of the reasons the restaurant business can feel so much like family is because more often than not staff, managers, and owners all work in the same space. The “open door policy” that most corporate offices have, doesn’t really work the same way if you’re manager doesn’t have a “door”. Even if you do not have a private office for staff members to come and speak with you at any time of any given work day, you can help by setting aside a set time each week for staff members to feel invited to come and speak with you about any issues. It’s also helpful to give your staff members a more private way to request a meeting with you. Consider posting a phone number, email address, or even anonymous text information poster in the staff room, anything that will help a staff member talk about issues, before acting out on them while on your floor.

3. Strategic Scheduling

You know your restaurant employees. You know who works best with whom, and that means from the kitchen to the front of house staff to the managers. Consider carefully when you put together the work schedules for the week. How can you make the most of the staff you have? Consider if there are some people who enjoy each others time more and work well together. Consider if there are some employees who could use more help during peak rush hours and perhaps that individual should be scheduled with someone who can help that employee during the shift. There is much to consider when scheduling for your restaurant, but by choosing whom you schedule and when carefully, you will make a more productive and enjoyable shift every time. Use What Time Do I Work for your scheduling needs to help you clear your lines of communication!