restaurant labor shortage
by Laura-Andreea Voicu

We’re going through an unprecedented labor shortage in the restaurant industry right now. At any one time, you may be short on the right people to do the jobs you need.

Luckily, there’s plenty of innovative tech coming to the foreground to address the restaurant labor shortage. Let’s take a look at how the right tech could ease the staffing burden for restaurant operators.

6 Restaurant Tech Tools to Help You Do More with Less Staff

Here are six innovative ways that tech is addressing the restaurant labor shortage across the world.

1. QR code menus revolutionize dine-in ordering

If you’re short on servers, every second counts. With traditional paper-and-pen ordering, your servers are constantly rushing between the kitchen and the restaurant to take and deliver orders, process payments, and everything else.

Each journey between the kitchen and the restaurant takes up precious time. If you’ve got a busy restaurant and few servers, all of this back-and-forth can add significant waiting time for your customers. This can be very frustrating for customers and staff alike.

QR code menus can change all of this. With a QR code, you can direct customers to an online menu that they can browse, and order and pay using their smartphones.

Free QR code menu for effortless dine-in ordering Set up your contactless menu in minutes and start accepting orders by tonight

This not only reduces the demand for restaurant workers’ attention, but it also empowers customers and takes away some of the pressure associated with ordering at a restaurant.

Follow this step-by-step tutorial to create your own QR code menu for free:

2. Online table reservations & food pre-orders save time for kitchen and servers

What’s better than customers being able to order as soon as they sit down at the table? Well, ordering even before they get to the restaurant.

How? By enabling table reservations on your website and giving customers the option to order their food in advance every time they book a table.

restaurant labor shortage

This will help you organize the kitchen better knowing what to expect for the day. At the same time, your servers can focus on addressing other customers’ concerns and cleaning tables for the next party.

As a result, you will massively streamline the order and payment process for kitchen and servers alike, leading to time saved, faster service, and happier customers.

Serve more customers faster and take the pressure off your staff Enable table reservations & food pre-orders for free

3. Scheduling tools optimize rotas

Every restaurant owner knows the feeling of seeing too many staff standing around on a slow night. But it’s worse still to see too few staff rushed off their feet during an unexpectedly busy evening.

The hospitality industry is unpredictable, and while you can make broad guesses as to when you’ll be busy and when you won’t, it’s not an exact art.

This is where labor management software comes in. Labor management software helps you optimize your rotas and organize restaurant employees in ways that make the absolute most of who is available at any given time.

Scheduling tools use sophisticated data analysis to determine when you will need the most staff. They can also allocate shifts based on factors like labor costs, skillset, and (of course) availability. This ensures that you always have the right people available at the right time.

4. Apps empower staff and boost their loyalty

Nowadays, there’s an app for everything. The convenience of having an app on your phone that you can access at all times empowers restaurant staff to:

  • Check their schedule
  • Get reminders of important events
  • Be notified of things like performance issues
  • Get rewards for good work
  • Check and monitor paychecks
  • Update their details and availability as needed
  • Communicate with other employees

With VoIP technology, you can even connect your app to your business phone number, meaning that managers can receive business calls through the app and take them on the go.

All in all, apps are very empowering for staff and can reduce a lot of the time spent asking and answering questions, digging out staff files, and so on.

Apps can also be a big factor in diversity recruiting. They make essential information and tasks accessible to potential staff with disabilities, and they’re very popular with younger demographics.

So, if you want to attract more staff as well as make the most of the staff you have, diverse apps are a very good idea.

5. Recruiting software brings in the best

Filling restaurant jobs is a headache at any time, let alone during a labor shortage. Recruiting software can be a great help in managing your recruitment campaigns, monitoring candidate progress, and ultimately both attracting and hiring the very best staff for your restaurant.

For example, recruitment software can help you craft optimized job openings and post them in visible places for your desired audience. A good candidate management system can help you track the progress of each candidate and objectively weigh up their skills and performance.

The best of these employees won’t just fill staff shortages, they’ll create a great environment resulting in a better customer experience and a lower turnover rate.

That prevents a vicious cycle where you’re losing your most valuable staff due to stressful working conditions caused in part by the shortage of employees.

In a tight labor market like the one we’re experiencing you need all the help you can get with recruiting. Recruiting and candidate management software is an obvious choice.

6. Online ordering streamlines your takeaway system

If you offer takeaway, online ordering is a fantastic way to free up your phone lines and streamline the process.

Similarly to the QR code process mentioned above, online ordering empowers customers and will bring in more delivery sales without overwhelming your employees.

Accept orders with a tap on your smartphone Free up your staff with a free online ordering system

An efficient online ordering system enables you to provide customers with customized delivery times based on how busy you are and how large the order is. It can also allow you to display a message in the menu warning of longer wait times. Or, if a dish has run out, you can mark it as out of stock from the online menu.

You can enjoy all of these handy features and more by installing the free online ordering system by GloriaFood in minutes:

Use Tech to Address Restaurant Staffing Issues

No matter how hard the restaurant labor shortage is hitting you, restaurant technology can help. Table reservation systems, online ordering, and QR codes all streamline the server-to-kitchen process. This saves a huge amount of time, meaning that fewer employees have more time to tend to more customers.

Meanwhile, recruitment software helps improve not just the quantity but the quality of the candidates answering your job ads. It also helps you track and manage your candidates to make your recruitment process as stress-free as possible for everyone involved.

Finally, scheduling and labor management software helps restaurant owners organize and optimize their rotas for the best possible staffing results. No more stressful, understaffed services!

All in all, if your restaurant is struggling with staffing issues, it’s a very good idea to check out tech that could help.

This article is a guest post.

photo of GloriaFood blog writer Laura-Andreea Voicu
Laura-Andreea Voicu

Laura-Andreea Voicu is an experienced content writer with a knack for marketing and SEO. She creates guides and resources designed to help restaurants grow their presence online and boost sales.

She has been featured on the Oracle Food and Beverage Blog and wrote for Search Engine Journal, Clutch, Sender, Venngage, Quickbooks, and many more.

Find me on LinkedIn.