Staffing Your Restaurant for the Holiday Season

‘Tis the season for spending time with family and friends, and that time more often than not gets spent at shops, restaurants and cafes. This means great things for you and your business, so it’s very important you prepare yourself (and your staff) for success this holiday season by staffing your restaurant accordingly. Here are a few tips to get you ready to go in a hurry before the new year!

Fill your gaps with part-time, hourly hiring

There’s no doubt that  the increase in covers and traffic into your business during the holiday season requires an increase in staff. According to the Workforce Index report from People Report, restaurant companies reported an approximately 50% increase in the number of both hourly and management jobs in the third quarter, a number which then jumped to 77% in the fourth quarter.

With no time left to think about how you’ll fill the gaps, you’ll want to take advantage of amazing resources like Instawork. Think of it as LinkedIn for hourly employees, a tool that can be used to quickly find people to fill the hourly shifts you need so that you don’t have to worry about the rest of your staff picking up the slack. In an environment as competitive as the San Francisco Bay Area, it has become increasingly more difficult to find good hourly work, a problem that Instawork has shown success in addressing for the business owners that utilize the service.

Numbers don’t lie, so trust them

Given that the holiday season is about spending time with family, you will undoubtedly also run into a barrage of time-off requests that, if granted, may jeopardize your ability to adequately run your business.

One way to prepare your staff is to only offer time-off approvals on a first-come-first-serve basis. That way, you make it fair for your employees to submit requests when needed. Another great way to gauge what kind of help you may need is to do the math! Look at the numbers gathered from previous years to gauge how much of a holiday push you may be able to expect for the current year, then use those findings to guide your hiring needs.

Bring ’em back!

The easiest way to factor in some much needed hourly hires is to bring back employees from previous years! This will give you a lovely head start on the training front, and you can often worry less about how your customer experience will be affected by brand new hires.

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