Staff turnover always seems to be a struggle for businesses in the hospitality industry.
By its nature, working in cafés, restaurants, and even take-away food outlets is a high-stress occupation. Add to this, relatively lower pay rates, long shifts, or erratic schedules, and it’s not surprising that many employees suffer burnout.

But, as an employer, you can do something about this. There are ways you can reduce employee exit rates and build loyalty while increasing your restaurant’s financial performance as well.

Of course, employees leave jobs every day for any number of reasons, many of which are entirely out of your control. That said, the number one reason people give for quitting their jobs is due to their relationship with their boss. This is definitely something you can work on.

Along with improving your people management skills, there are other practical things you can do to retain the great talent you have in your café or restaurant. Here are five practical things you can do:

1. Retraining bad managers

Take a good look at yourself in the mirror. If you’re a tough, self-styled Gordon Ramsay kind of manager, then you’ll need to make some changes if you want your good people to stick around.

It’s important to recognise bad people management practices when you see them and stamp them out if you want to keep your top talent.

2. Scheduling and flexibility

Having the right people in the right place at the right time is crucial.

But are you overworking some employees to the tune of 60+ hours a week while others complain about not getting enough hours?

Lots of workers these days want flexibility. And this means shorter, regular shifts.

If you’re still relying on spreadsheets or outdated technology all this can become a nightmare to manage, and you can easily overcook your shift rosters and schedule an individual beyond the legal parameters.

But, using purpose-built software, you get the visibility you need to ensure optimal staffing levels while you accommodate your employees’ shift preferences.

3.Training and advancement

When it comes to millennial workers, training is vital. Millennials crave opportunity and are ever keen to expand their skills and acquire knowledge.

However, it’s not just millennials. Providing good training shows your employees you care about them.

So, if you want to keep your employees from jumping ship, give them a comprehensive training program that allows them to hone their skills and develop new ones. And when it’s time to fill new positions, you’ll be better able to promote from within. With highly trained staff, you’ll boost your employees’ confidence, making them feel more invested in their jobs and less likely to leave.

4.Pay and Benefits

Of course, it’s easy for your employees to be tempted to move by a larger pay packet. But, if you’re well known for providing exceptional employee benefits that make your employees’ salaries go further, this is something that another employer can’t easily match.

Offering benefits such as competitive personal loans and mortgages, car leases, health insurance, corporate superannuation, makes a big difference to an employee’s personal bottom line.

And while benefits can help you keep your people from looking elsewhere, they also can be used as a powerful draw card when you’re in recruiting mode. Word will get out about the great employee benefits you offer and people will aspire to work for your café or restaurant.

In fact, 80% of working Australians see employee benefits as an important consideration when joining an organisation.

5. Recognition

It’s so important to take the time to give kudos where it’s due and publicly share this praise. A pat on the back is a great motivator and goes a long way to creating a positive working environment.

This is such an easy thing to do, yet so many owners and managers of cafes and restaurants simply don’t take the time to appreciate and acknowledge the team members that interact daily with their customers. And the best part about this approach is that it costs you absolutely nothing.

While some degree of employee turnover will always be beyond your control, by taking a practical and common sense approach to managing your people, you can make a considerable difference and reduce employee turnover to a minimum.