Behind every successful restaurant business is a team of dedicated and passionate employees. In an industry known for its fast-paced environment and high turnover rates, retaining your valuable team members can feel like a challenge.
What is employee retention?
Employee retention is a company’s ability to keep its employees in their roles, reducing turnover—which is when people voluntarily or involuntarily leave their jobs. To gauge this, businesses use the employee or staff retention rate.
What is a staff retention rate?
A staff retention rate, also known as employee retention rate, is a metric used by businesses to measure the percentage of employees who remain with the company over a specified period of time.
It’s an important indicator of how well your business is able to retain its employees and keep them from leaving for other opportunities.
How to calculate employee retention
Formula: (Number of Employees at Start – Number of Employees Who Left) / Number of Employees at Start) x 100%
This percentage tells you how well your business is retaining employees. Higher percentages are better, indicating good employee retention, while lower percentages may suggest you’ll need to improve retention efforts.
Why is employee retention at restaurants important?
Employee retention at restaurants is important for several reasons.
Food and service quality
When staff turnover is high, it can lead to inconsistency in food quality, service, and overall customer experience. Retaining employees helps maintain consistent standards, which is crucial for customer satisfaction.
Constantly hiring and training new employees can be expensive and time-consuming. By focusing on retaining your staff, you save money on recruitment, training, and onboarding.
Customers often return to restaurants where they receive good service from familiar faces. Retaining employees can build customer loyalty and repeat business.
Employees who have been working at your restaurant for a long time tend to be more efficient and productive. They know the menu, kitchen, and procedures well, leading to smoother operations and shorter wait times for customers.
Positive workplace culture
High turnover can create a negative work environment. Retaining employees fosters a positive workplace culture, leading to happier and more motivated staff.
A restaurant known for high turnover may have a bad reputation. On the other hand, restaurants with low turnover are often seen as more reliable and desirable places to dine.
Effective employee retention and engagement strategies
Retaining staff members has significant advantages for your restaurant, as it leads to cost savings, enhances your overall company culture, and elevates the experience for both your employees and your customers.
1. Survey your employees
Employees crave the chance to be heard. Anonymous employee engagement surveys provide them with a safe space to express their thoughts openly, without fearing any negative consequences. By tapping into their insights, you can gain a clearer understanding of what needs to evolve within your restaurant to cultivate a more positive environment.
2. Minimize burnout
Burnout, a state of emotional and physical exhaustion due to prolonged stress, is a long-standing issue in the restaurant industry. Safeguarding against burnout involves understanding how hard your staff is working and the toll it takes on their mental and physical health.
Understand your team’s capacity
In essence, it boils down to being realistic about your team’s capabilities. Prioritizing their well-being is important. You need to strike a balance between providing quality service to customers without overwhelming your staff.
3. Let your employees make their own schedule
The restaurant industry can be tough. Unpredictable hours and short shift notices can be particularly hard for parents and caregivers.
4. Prioritize employee appreciation
Let’s face it, we all thrive on hearing it: “Good job!” These two words can truly brighten our day. Yet, we’ve come to understand that words alone don’t always suffice; actions speak louder. Demonstrating that you value employee happiness is essential, and there’s a ton of ways to do it.
Employee appreciation events
Employee appreciation events celebrate the collective hard work your team puts in throughout the year. Incorporate fun games, great food, and lighthearted awards for a successful event that your team looks forward to all year.
5. Work on improving company culture
Developing a positive restaurant company culture requires various strategies: enhancing team communication, granting autonomy, and improving benefits. But simpler steps can uplift morale too. Think team outings, volunteering, or pre-shift family meals. These create bonds, boosting commitment to each other and your restaurant’s success.
6. Increase compensation
Improving the atmosphere at work can help keep employees from leaving their jobs, but it’s essential to understand that pay and benefits are the main reasons why people look for new jobs. Increasing salaries can make a big difference in reducing employee turnover.
7. Improve productivity with time tracking tools
Boosting how much work your employees get done helps them stay focused on their jobs and feel more connected to your company.
Employee retention in restaurants is easy with Homebase
In today’s tough job market, the struggle to find new workers is real. Plus, keeping employees can be hard in the restaurant world.
Frequently Asked Questions about employee engagement and retention
What is employee retention?
Employee retention means keeping your employees happy and motivated so they stay in their jobs instead of leaving.
Why is employee retention important for restaurants?
Employee retention is vital for restaurants because it keeps food and service quality consistent, saves money on hiring and training, builds customer loyalty, and makes operations smoother.
How do you calculate employee retention?
To calculate employee retention, you count how many employees you have at the start, subtract those who left during a specific time, and divide by the initial number. Multiply by 100 to get the percentage.
What are some strategies to improve employee retention in restaurants?
Strategies include surveys to listen to employees, preventing burnout, letting employees make schedules, showing appreciation, enhancing company culture, increasing compensation, and using time tracking tools.
Why should restaurants use Homebase for employee retention?
Homebase offers tools to create schedules, prevent time fraud, and manage payroll. It helps restaurants save money, improve efficiency, and keep employees happy and engaged.
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Joseph Odierno Buffalo
Joseph C. Odierno of Buffalo New York is a passionate individual working in debt collection.