goRoster

Adding a blank row

April, 2018

goRoster users can now add blank employee rows to their rosters. This feature gives you the flexibility to create a roster template without having to assign employees.

 

Just click on the blue ‘Add a row’ button in the roster designer page to create a blank row.

The row will appear as ‘Unassigned.’

You can instantly start adding shifts and roles as normal by clicking on the cells you want to fill.

Once you’re happy with the roster, simply drag an employee’s name from the right-hand side of the screen to the ‘Unassigned’ row to apply the shifts to that person.

You can copy your roster template to future weeks too. Just click the ‘Copy Roster’ in the drop-down menu at the top right of the screen, choose which week you want to copy to, and confirm by pushing the ‘Copy Week’ button. This tool makes it really easy to plan your rosters well in advance!

You still have the option of adding employees to your roster before assigning shifts to them. Just click on the name of the employee you want to add to your roster on the right-hand side of your screen. Then assign shifts and roles as normal.

This new ‘Add a row’ feature is now available to all goRoster users, including those on a free 30-day trial.

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Maximum and minimum hours – striking a balance

April, 2017

Striking the right balance between maximum and minimum hours for your part-time or casual staff can often be a difficult process. But getting the balance wrong can have serious and long-lasting ramifications for your business.

Overworked staff

When you’re running a business, key staff members are often relied upon to keep things running smoothly, so it can be easy to ‘reward’ them with a more hours. Staff members may also request more time at work due to financial or personal circumstances, and you ‘help them out’ by upping their hours.

You may think you’re doing right by your business and your staff in both situations. However, overworking your staff is a major health and safety risk which can result in:

  • more workplace accidents
  • higher rates of mental health problems including severe anxiety and depression
  • a greater risk of physical health problems for staff, such as diabetes and heart disease.

Aside from potential health issues, overworked staff can be a threat to your bottom line. Tired and stressed staff are more likely to make mistakes on the job, be rude to customers, be less productive and care less about the quality of their work. This can all add up to lost revenue.

It’s important to realise that just because a staff member is at work, it doesn’t mean they are fit to be there. Keeping an eye on hours and communicating with staff about their workloads is the key to managing this.

Underworked staff

Not giving your employees enough hours can also put your business at risk.

As of April 2016, zero-hour contracts can no longer be offered to employees. This means that agreed hours of work must now be included in the employment agreement for every staff member. If you fail as an employer to provide the hours that have been specified, or have agreed on hours but haven’t recorded them in the employment agreement, employees are entitled to apply for a penalty to the Employment Relations Authority.

You can choose not to agree on work hours with an employee, although if you do these must be recorded on the employment agreement. If you don’t agree on hours up front however, your staff are less likely to feel secure at work, putting you at risk of losing good employees to your competitors. Unhappy employees may also speak out, making it harder for you to attract new staff.

If you’re looking for a system that makes identifying minimum and maximum hours easy, get in touch with us. We’d love to chat about how goRoster can make managing rosters a simple process.

Common mistakes made when calculating payroll costs

March, 2017

Knowing what your payroll costs are – daily, weekly, monthly and yearly – is an important part of running a successful business. It allows you to forecast future wage costs, ensures you don’t have any surprises come pay day, and gives you confidence in the stability of the business.

But do you know the TRUE cost of your roster? 

The mistake we often see is the assumption that payroll costs are only based on the number of hours worked by your staff x their hourly wage. This is a dangerous trap, as it only provides you with a snapshot of your TRUE payroll costs.

To get the whole picture, other factors must also be considered.

Holiday pay accrual

Your employees might not be taking a holiday this week or even next, but as a business you still have to pay them holiday pay as a percentage of their wages. It might seem incidental but it can quickly add up.

Salary and ‘backroom’ staff

It’s not just your front of house and kitchen staff that you need to pay. Don’t forget about your hard-working, administration staff – their salaries need to be factored into your overall wage costs too. And if the owner is taking a wage from the business, that’s another staff cost that needs to be accounted for.

Non-wage related costs

Every employer has obligations to pay levies on behalf of its staff to ACC or Medicare, as well as contribute to superannuation funds, like Kiwisaver. You may also have additional costs to pay, such as an employee clothing allowance. It can be easy to forget about these costs, as they often aren’t paid weekly, but they can push your wage costs much higher than you think.

Failing to plan is planning to fail

March, 2017

Hospitality is a complex – and often fickle – business. There are so many factors that can affect the need for staff, and therefore the overall turnover of the business. There are far too many to mention, but can include: changes in weather; local events; public holidays; what your competition is doing; what deals are running; and how you’ve marketed the business.

Many new customers we meet often focus on the operational side of the business when trying to pre-empt these factors – like recording and capturing time sheets and having an availability of short term staff on standby. This can certainly help with the day to day running of your business. To be truly effective, however, these systems need to be incorporated into a carefully considered staff rostering plan.

An effective rostering plan should do a number of things. It should help you to organise enough staff for each shift; account for employee leave; prevent staff burnout; have transparency about the performance of your staff; and see staff costs. It needs to consider all outcomes, and have contingencies in place when the proverbial hits.

When it comes to creating an effective rostering plan, the question every manager must consider is: how? Too many businesses get caught up in the what and the why, without considering how they are going to implement change.

Just like in real-life, it’s the how that can undo even the most well intentioned plans. It’s why so many of us fall off a healthy eating plan – it’s all well and good knowing that you want to lose weight (what) because you want to be fitter for summer (why), but how you go about it is the most important part.

Having a solid rostering plan could massively increase the chances of success for your business. So, do you have a rostering plan? And if so, is it a good one? And if not, we can certainly recommend one.

Why rostering templates are bad practice

January, 2017

Anyone who works in hospitality knows that no day is the same. Things can change as quickly as the seasons, but with far less predictably.

How busy you are depends on the weather; the time of year; what events are happening around town; what your competitors are doing that day; even if your local sports team is performing well that season.

Plus on any given week, one or more of your staff will be on holiday, away sick or have a family emergency they need to attend.

We’re continually surprised at how many businesses we find using the same roster template that they created months ago.

With so many fluctuations not just day to day, but shift to shift, rostering templates can become out of date as quickly as they are created. Your template roster might have worked last week, but this week you have three large functions, an international touring band in town, and half your staff are away with the flu.

That’s why we recommend using a four-step process when it comes to rostering: Plan, execute, review, repeat.

Make a roster that can change as your situation does. Have contingencies in place for when things don’t go to plan, and continually assess how things are tracking. Take notes on what did and didn’t work and make changes accordingly.

A system like goRoster allows managers to access all the relevant information needed to execute this four-step process effectively. This is the best practice for managing staff, and the one followed by the most successful businesses in the hospitality industry.

Burnt-out staff are a burden on your business

December, 2016

Busy waiter and waitresses working at bar night

The Christmas period is always a busy one for those in the retail and hospitality industries. Staff are working longer hours, later nights and dealing with throngs of people every day. If not managed correctly, this can lead to unhappy and burnt-out staff, which will be a lag on your business and can result in huge costs.

Here are three tips to stop staff burnout:

Talk to them

You and your staff may have different definitions of being ‘overworked’, so it needs to be clearly defined. Communication is key. You may want to ask your staff what their expectations are, how much they would like to work and what they would see as an ideal role.

Rotate the workload

Keeping staff fresh and enthused can be as simple as rotating roles. If someone is spending most of their time in the kitchen, switch up their role by putting them front of house for example. As the saying goes, a change is as good as a holiday.

Have tight systems in place

Have systems in place that give you the information you need to identify when staff are starting to work long hours.

There are rostering systems available – like the one goRoster has developed – that will alert you when someone has worked too many hours. A staff member may not approach you if they are unhappy with the number of hours they are working, so it’s good to be proactive.

Ensuring staff aren’t overworked is key to maintaining a happy team, and ultimately happy customers!

 

Managing chaos during the silly season

December, 2016

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The Christmas period is always a hectic time for anyone working in hospitality. With Christmas celebrations and client functions galore, it should be the busiest time of the year for you and your staff.

So how do you stay on top of things through the mad rush?

Don’t get stressed – get systematic.

When things are busy, you need to have tight processes in place to stay in control.

Make sure your systems for rostering, ordering stock, customer bookings and payroll are all as streamlined as possible. If you need assistance with putting them in place, goRoster can certainly help.

Fight chaos with communication

Keeping the communication lines open is key to maintaining a calm workplace. Make sure your staff know exactly what is happening – who is working what shift, how many people are in for dinner and any private functions that are booked for example.

Clear communication to your staff will make them feel confident and happy in what they are doing. And the positive vibes will no doubt rub off on your customers!

Keeping track of staff easier with goRoster

November, 2016

syncrostaff

A Christchurch recruitment company is using goRoster to keep track of candidates’ jobs and availability.

SyncroStaff Managing Director Jason Seaward says the company has been using goRoster for almost a month.

Specialising in transport and logistic jobs, SyncroStaff has more than 40 employees on medium to long term placements. They place truck and van drivers, forklift operators and labourers, as well as staff in office, administration and warehousing positions.

Earlier this year, the company had started using a customer relationship management (CRM) system but found that it was not able to show where candidates were working and when they would next be available.

“It was great for storing information, like candidates’ licences and certificates. But we needed a system that our recruitment staff could use to see where people were,” Jason says.

The company’s next step is to integrate goRoster with its payroll system.

“We love the intuitiveness of goRoster. The CRM we used never felt intuitive. We like the way goRoster operates, and its features. Being able to copy and paste the rosters each week means less data entry for our staff.”

New dashboard clearer, more useful

November, 2016

We have refreshed our dashboard, giving you a better looking, more functional, clearer view of all your roster information.

The new version supports all screen sizes too, so you can stay on track from anywhere and any device.

So, what’s new? Well, we have new ‘view modes’ so you can look at your rosters as tiles or lists and then dive into the financial side.

Tile view (replaces ‘Simple View’):

picture1

List view (replaces ‘Advanced View’):

picture2

Financial view (replaces ‘Detailed Financials’):

picture3

GET TO KNOW THE NEW DASHBOARD – here’s what’s changed;

picture4 picture5

Key Feature Notes
A Week Navigation
B Tile and List view modes
C Roster Navigation
D Roster Actions The new dashboard has these in the header “Cog” dropdown menu and also in the footer “More” dropdown menu
E Cost vs Revenue chart
F Revenue
G Employee Pay Costs
H Cost Budget
I Complete / Pending Flag
J Edit Roster
K Roster Employees/Hours
L Roster Status
M Financial View
N Unpublished Changes Warning

Another way to budget – introducing ‘maximum hours’

October, 2016

We have added another feature to our software – a ‘maximum hours’ function that lets you set limits for a roster and make sure employees are not over-worked.

Previously, customers have only been able to create rosters based on costs. Now, maximum hours can be entered for both rosters and employees. Alerts will pop up when you have gone over your hours, but won’t restrict what you can do.

This means you’ll be able to see your budget and stick to it, without knowing the pay rates/costs of each staff member. But if you want to, then you can also add in the expected and actual revenue to compare against the hours – just to make budgeting a little easier.

Users who have the permission to edit financial information will be able to enter the maximum weekly hours for employees. This new field can be found on the General tab when editing the Pay and Cost panel of an employee. Once entered, the maximum hours will show against the employee in the roster designer. A warning will be displayed if a person is rostered for more hours than their maximum.

Users who have the permission to edit rosters and roles will be able to enter the maximum weekly hours for rosters. This new field can be found in the Edit window of a roster. Once entered, the maximum hours will show in the footer of the roster designer. A warning will also be displayed if the total rostered hours exceeds the maximum.

You can enter maximum weekly hours for each roster:

roster

You can also add maximum weekly hours for each employee:

employee

An alert will pop up in the roster designer when you have exceeded your roster’s maximum hours. To switch between hours and costs in the pie chart in the bottom right corner, click on ‘By Hours’ or ‘By Costs’.

designer

 

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