Restaurants are used to challenges and a fair portion of them are related to staffing. You may be surprised to hear this, but it’s quite common for restaurants to experience sudden short-staffing, also known as understaffing. When this happens, restaurateurs won’t only have to worry about unnecessary financial losses. There’s also a risk of a ruined reputation when disappointed diners narrate their bad experiences on social media.

So, how do you prepare for such situations, and what can you do if you’re already in one? Read on to learn more:

1. Use Gig Apps to Find Temporary Employees

If you’ve already lost an employee or two, there’s only so much you can do to bring them back. Your best bet would be to replace them – and fast! Gig apps are your best friend when such times arise because the great majority of them are designed to help you fill positions immediately. Well, this may cost you a tad more, but it’s worth the effort if it helps you save your reputation.

As one of the best apps for general staffing and bartender staffing for restaurants and events, shiftNOW leads in this space by offering great flexibility and convenience for both employees and employers. Employers can immediately find replacements or an extra set of hands when there is a surge in orders or a different situation has led to sudden understaffing.

2. Automate With Technology

Restaurant tech is a major asset in preventing and solving restaurant shortages for the long haul. There are lots of hardware and software solutions that make it possible for your staff to work strain-free and can even free up some employees. For example, a self-check-in and ordering system can offload some duties for the servers, so that they spend more time handling the most important responsibilities.

Not only does automating with tech make the work easier for your employees, but it can also make it less of a big deal when you’re short of staff.

3. Put Your Employees First

The one good thing about putting your employees first is that it helps you to stay ahead of consumer trends. There are a couple of things you can do in that light. First off, you can come up with better ways of incentivizing your staff, so that they are more dedicated and productive at work. That would be more effective than having to make replacements when you suddenly realize that you’re short-staffed.

Ensure that you are paying enough and offering other benefits that make your employees want to stick around longer. If you’re still getting high turnover rates despite offering great pay, could be there are other issues at work. For that reason, it’s important to hold regular meetings to motivate your employees and uncover any grievances.

4. Plan Ahead

One of the most effective ways to handle sudden staffing shortages is to evaluate your staffing needs and plan your workforce intelligently. You can analyze past data and use that to inform your future needs, so you can predict how much labor force you need for certain shifts or at different times of the year.

Using a forward-thinking approach makes it easier to make appropriate adjustments as you go so you won’t have to resort to struggle finding workers at the last minute. Part of your plan could even include having a team of reliable temp workers on standby for when you need them.

5. Prioritize Effective Communication

Another imperative solution for overcoming last-minute staffing problems in a restaurant setting is fostering effective communication between the management and staff. Not only does such communication make it easy to resolve underlying issues, but it also helps to keep your employees satisfied.

Proper communication promotes teamwork and encourages employees to inform you promptly whenever they want to leave so you can plan adequately.

There You Have It,

Though last-minute restaurant staffing problems sound intimidating, they are not all that challenging to overcome. With the right planning and a solid strategy for handling such issues, you can protect your business’s reputation and stay competitive longer.

If, however, you’re already understaffed and don’t know where to start, a top-ranking gig app like shiftNOW would be a great consideration. Once you’ve found the right employees, you can now restrategize to ensure they stay with you longer.

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