Does your hospitality business need staff scheduling software? Identifying the right time to make the move to tech

Megan Lipscombe

Megan Lipscombe

Head of Marketing

Making the decision to introduce new technology to your hospitality business can be a daunting prospect. With identifying the right time to make the move away from manual processes, easier said than done.  

You might be asking yourself… Is my business big enough? Will the benefit outweigh the cost? Do I need a new skillset for a successful implementation? Here we look at staff scheduling specifically; highlighting some of the key pain points that signify it’s time for you to make the move to rota software.  

Building staff rotas is taking hours, not minutes 

This one is pretty obvious, but alone enough reason to decide to invest in staff scheduling software. Building your rotas can be a logistical nightmare and laborious process, when you’re trying to juggle staff availability with anticipated demand. Not to mention the last-minute shift swap requests and availability changes that come in just when you think you’re done. 

Intelligent rota software will take care of all of this for you. In just a few clicks, you can build and share staff rotas that automatically account for employee availability and skillsets. 

If you’re not ready to implement a staff scheduling solution but are looking to perfect your staff rotas, you can find a few tips here

Managing absence requests and shift swaps is a logistical nightmare 

As mentioned previously, last-minute shift swaps can be a headache to manage, especially if they’re late in the day and your rota is built using pen and paper.  

With rota software such as Rotaready, employees can request to swap a shift from within the mobile app. The software will run checks to ensure eligible employees have shifts of their own available to complete the swap. Once this criteria has been met, the manager will be notified and can then accept or reject this request, with the rota being updated in line with any changes.  

You’re struggling to achieve the perfect labour cost percentage 

Staff scheduling software can really help with managing your labour costs. With a solution that enables you to build staff rotas that consider things such as the weather, reservations and seasonal or one-off events, you’re off to a good start.  

Accurate time and attendance monitoring is also crucial here as this will allow you to accurately track your labour costs and ensure you aren’t over or underpaying your employees. 

So, if you’re struggling with your labour cost percentage it may be time to look at staff scheduling software. But if you want a few tips on where you might be going wrong, and how to make improvements in the meantime, have a read of this blog. 

You’re seeing inaccuracies in payroll  

Following on nicely from the above, it can often be difficult to accurately track things such as late clock-ins or overtime payments. If this is something you’re struggling with and feel you are spending a lot of time cross-checking data and doing manual calculations to ensure accurate payroll, then a staff scheduling solution could be the answer. 

Rota software, such as Rotaready, will help you accurately track staff attendance and generate accurate timesheets. These timesheets can then be exported or fed directly into your payroll solution via a real-time integration. For more information on exactly how this works, check out our recent blog with our payroll partner, PayCaptain.  

You’re not confident in your approach to tip distribution  

With the Employment (Allocation of Tips) Act 2023, receiving Royal Assent earlier this month, fair tip distribution has become more important than ever. But achieving this can be easier said than done, with the approach you take heavily influenced by your business set-up. Without a solution in place to help you distribute tips fairly, it can be an incredibly manual and time-consuming process, with a lot of room for error. 

Fortunately, many staff scheduling solutions are now equipped to take care of tip distribution and tronc calculations for you. Here’s a bit more on the approaches you can take. 

You’re managing multiple sites 

When you’re running a hospitality business with more than one site visibility can be poor. Whether that’s visibility of costs, employee availability or general cross-site comparisons; the more sites you have, the more difficult things are to manage. 

Staff scheduling software that offers cross-site reporting and allows you to allocate staff shifts across different sites, will make managing multiple sites a lot more straightforward. With Rotaready, you can create cover shifts for when one site may temporarily need a team member from another, providing all sites with visibility of the cover shift and clearly informing the team member of where their shift is scheduled to take place. 

You’re struggling with compliance  

No matter the size of your business, ensuring you’re compliant in line with the likes of working time regulations, GDPR and break policies, can be easier said than done. A staff scheduling solution will help you take care of compliance automatically; ensuring every member of your team is working the right number of hours, their data is being stored securely and any unsociable hours are compensated for. 

You can find more detail on how staff scheduling software can help with compliance and legislation here.  

You’re seeing high staff churn  

Employee retention is a struggle for many hospitality businesses. And with high onboarding and training costs, every leaver comes with an additional cost to your business. Naturally, happy employees tend to stay with your business longer, which begs the question… what makes your employees happy? There are of course many factors, such as offering consistency, autonomy and training & development opportunities that can help you retain employees,  (more on those here).  

But here are some that a staff scheduling solution could help you solve. The avoidable issues that are causing employee frustration, such as… 

  • Unintentionally overworking salaried employees  
  • Not giving enough hours to flexible employees 
  • Ensuring enough time between shifts  
  • Giving enough notice of shifts 

A solution such as Rotaready will take care of all of these things for you, so you can automatically ensure, no one is overworked, underworked or frustrated by the inability to plan ahead, due to late notice of shifts.  

If you have any questions about the points covered in this blog; or think it might be the right time for your hospitality business to make the move to staff scheduling software and would like to learn more about Rotaready, then get in touch via live chat or email us at

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