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One thing is true is every industry: your business is only as strong as your employees. For restaurants, where servers interact directly with customers every day, this is especially true. No matter how much your guests love your food, they won’t come back unless you offer them great service. Here are 3 ways to track your staff’s performance, so you can make sure they’re improving your business’s bottom line.

1. Yours, Mine, and Hours

Track every employee’s hours carefully. This includes recording the hours you schedule them to work, and the hours they actually work. If they’re trading shifts with each other every week, it may be time to reevaluate your scheduling protocol. Software like 7Shifts can be especially helpful for busy restaurateurs: with every schedule change saved in the cloud, you can review all the data whenever you have a moment.


2. Big Data Means Big Profits

Compare your employees’ hours with the sales data in your POS. For some restaurants, success is tied to time of day, and anyone working the lunch rush will rake in the dough. But in many cases, you’ll be able to find a star server upselling every special, or a distracted employee who never even offers to bring out the dessert menu. Knowledge is power, and once you know your staff’s strengths and growth areas, you can take appropriate steps. This may inspire you to improve the way you train your staff, or it may result in your hiring new employees. No matter the outcome, the goal remains the same: to support a team of people who are committed to the success of your business.


3. A Morale Argument

It’s common sense that happy employees do better work. In fact, research suggests that they’re 12% more productive. One easy way to make your employees happy is to make sure your tipping policy is working in everyone’s favor. In some cases, this may mean switching to a no-tip policy, in the interest of leveling the playing field for every servers and chefs alike. In other cases, it may mean rewarding hard work with big tips and big bonuses. You may want to get your employees’ opinions about your current policy, so any changes you make account for their preferences. Make sure to strike a balance here; take their ideas under consideration, but remember that any policy needs to boost your own bottom line while also keeping them satisfied at work.

Success is a team sport. Keeping your employees happy at work doesn’t just mean listening to their ideas; it also means being a leader. It’s your job to support your staff on the floor, in the kitchen, and through the data your restaurant collects. Strive to go higher, and your best hires will grow with you.

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