While it’s no secret that the restaurant industry has a high employee turnover rate, you may be surprised to learn just how much it can cost you as a restaurant owner. According to a recent report, the cost of staff turnover could be as high as $5,864 per employee.
To better understand how to reduce turnover and protect your restaurant’s bottom line, we sat down with Nick Karabelas. As the owner of Meli Café in downtown Chicago, Karabelas has years of experience hiring and retaining rockstar staff members. Here are a few tips that can help you do the same.
From company-wide meetings to anonymous online surveys, give your front- and back-of-house staff the opportunity to voice their opinions. Not only will the feedback highlight ways to improve your restaurant’s operations, but it will also give your staff the confidence to speak up when they’re unhappy.
The closer staff members are, the less likely they are to leave. Host special events – such as a holiday party or company retreat – that give your employees a chance to bond outside of the restaurant. For birthdays, bring in a cake or card for employees to sign so that everyone can celebrate their special day in style.
Almost all restaurants offer some sort of onboarding process that teaches employees the ins and outs of working in the industry. Take things a step further by developing a training program that enables staff members to grow and improve other areas as well. Whether it’s learning how to manage others or helping out with your restaurant’s finances, giving employees the opportunity to pick up new skills will keep them from heading elsewhere.
Although front- and back-of-house staff members know not to expect a 9-to-5 schedule, they’re still looking for some semblance of work-life balance. Meet with your employees to create schedules that fit with their lives outside of work. For example, if one of your staff members attends a class on Wednesday evenings, give him or her the option of switching that shift with someone who is available.