Everything’s coming up Roses Only: How Tanda helps retailers save 100+ hours a week

Jessica Genio-Ignacio

14 February 2020    |   

Valentine’s Day: On this day celebrating love and relationships, couples, friends, and family prepare their choice of gifts for the special people in their lives. Hearts adorn storefronts, packages and discounts abound, and behind the bustle and celebration are the retailers that make it all happen.  Today is one of the busiest days of the year for the Roses Only Group, a business founded in 1995 that has grown into Australia’s leading flower retailer. It brings together more than 45 years of floristry and retail experience to create a business that provides gifts of all kinds to those who want to share the love: boxed roses, seasonal flowers, full arrangements, wines and champagnes, chocolates, and more.  We caught up with Chief Operating Officer Kelly Taggart as she prepared for the busy season to ask about how she manages it all. “A day in the life of me,” Kelly says, “no two days are the same.” Bobby Rein Photography The search for the perfect software fit Not everything was always wrapped up neatly at the Roses Only headquarters. “Our biggest time and attendance problem was really about planning rostering,” Kelly says. “Previously we were working in spreadsheets, and as a growing team, you tend to spend a lot of time in those spreadsheets. That time would be much better spent elsewhere, on making the business more productive.” Using spreadsheets was an ordeal. Roses Only holds multiple warehouse locations throughout Australia, and an online store. With many teams and all 300-plus staff working in-house, balancing administrative tasks without a good platform was challenging. That search for better shift scheduling software led them to Tanda.  Kelly recalls: “When we were comparing solutions, what actually stood out was the feedback Tanda had received from all of their existing clients. And for me personally, and for us as a business, recommendations are so important. For Tanda to get that client feedback, that was a big factor in our decision.”  They implemented Tanda across the organisation to positive reception. Changing from a manual process to a technology solution suited the team, with them even having some fun with the selfie photos in the employee time clock. The integrations the platform offered was a big part of that decision, as Roses Only uses bespoke systems and they found it fit neatly in alongside their preferred payroll software.  Trimming hundreds of hours from rostering means more time for operations Roses Only has been using Tanda for so long, the team barely thinks of the problems it helped solve. “They would be things like the administration time managers take to look at what time people show up to work every day. You really want your managers to be leading the team and making them more productive and hitting those business targets, not clock-watching.” All in all, Kelly estimates Tanda saves them 100 hours a week across all locations. These saved hours go a long way—especially on huge business days like today, Valentine’s Day, and other peak periods like Mother’s Day and Christmas where they use the shift scheduling software to compare labour data from the previous year. Roses Only uses a significant amount of big data in its operations, and that’s essential to their success each peak season. Understanding their processes and building efficiency into them is key to scaling for significant events. By having efficient operations already set in place, they don’t need to make too many changes: it’s just the same, only bigger. “We found it’s even more beneficial with the extreme growth that we’ve had in the last 2 years, that our managers have been able to focus on other things besides managing people’s time and rosters because they have such a great platform in Tanda,” Kelly adds. Blooming in a competitive industry So what’s next for the retailer? As the market leader in delivered flowers and gifts, the organisation is setting its sights on supporting the future of its business through leadership development. They’ll also continue to serve their customers in the best way they know: with efficiency, productivity, and excellent service. “Everyone’s collecting information, and you’ve got to be able to put that information through in the right way and understand what customers are trying to do, so you can provide them with what they’re looking for. Then look at your own infrastructure and the way that your operations are set out, the way that your teams are set out, to support that offering to your customers.” “This business, in particular, has been in the industry for the past 12 years, and we have been online in a big way from the beginning. So we’ve already experienced many of these learnings and we’re making sure our infrastructure is supporting what we’re learning from that big data so that we can be the most productive that we can.” Want to streamline operations to support your growth and expansion? Try Tanda for 14 days for free, no credit card required. 

Valentine’s Day: On this day celebrating love and relationships, couples, friends, and family prepare their choice of gifts for the special people in their lives. Hearts adorn storefronts, packages and discounts abound, and behind the bustle and celebration are the retailers that make it all happen. 

Today is one of the busiest days of the year for the Roses Only Group, a business founded in 1995 that has grown into Australia’s leading flower retailer. It brings together more than 45 years of floristry and retail experience to create a business that provides gifts of all kinds to those who want to share the love: boxed roses, seasonal flowers, full arrangements, wines and champagnes, chocolates, and more. 

We caught up with Chief Operating Officer Kelly Taggart as she prepared for the busy season to ask about how she manages it all. “A day in the life of me,” Kelly says, “no two days are the same.”

Bobby Rein Photography

The search for the perfect software fit

Not everything was always wrapped up neatly at the Roses Only headquarters. “Our biggest time and attendance problem was really about planning rostering,” Kelly says. “Previously we were working in spreadsheets, and as a growing team, you tend to spend a lot of time in those spreadsheets. That time would be much better spent elsewhere, on making the business more productive.”

Using spreadsheets was an ordeal. Roses Only holds multiple warehouse locations throughout Australia, and an online store. With many teams and all 300-plus staff working in-house, balancing administrative tasks without a good platform was challenging.

That search for better shift scheduling software led them to Tanda. 

Kelly recalls: “When we were comparing solutions, what actually stood out was the feedback Tanda had received from all of their existing clients. And for me personally, and for us as a business, recommendations are so important. For Tanda to get that client feedback, that was a big factor in our decision.” 

They implemented Tanda across the organisation to positive reception. Changing from a manual process to a technology solution suited the team, with them even having some fun with the selfie photos in the employee time clock. The integrations the platform offered was a big part of that decision, as Roses Only uses bespoke systems and they found it fit neatly in alongside their preferred payroll software. 

Trimming hundreds of hours from rostering means more time for operations

Roses Only has been using Tanda for so long, the team barely thinks of the problems it helped solve.

“They would be things like the administration time managers take to look at what time people show up to work every day. You really want your managers to be leading the team and making them more productive and hitting those business targets, not clock-watching.”

All in all, Kelly estimates Tanda saves them 100 hours a week across all locations. These saved hours go a long way—especially on huge business days like today, Valentine’s Day, and other peak periods like Mother’s Day and Christmas where they use the shift scheduling software to compare labour data from the previous year.

Roses Only uses a significant amount of big data in its operations, and that’s essential to their success each peak season. Understanding their processes and building efficiency into them is key to scaling for significant events. By having efficient operations already set in place, they don’t need to make too many changes: it’s just the same, only bigger.

“We found it’s even more beneficial with the extreme growth that we’ve had in the last 2 years, that our managers have been able to focus on other things besides managing people’s time and rosters because they have such a great platform in Tanda,” Kelly adds.

Blooming in a competitive industry

So what’s next for the retailer? As the market leader in delivered flowers and gifts, the organisation is setting its sights on supporting the future of its business through leadership development. They’ll also continue to serve their customers in the best way they know: with efficiency, productivity, and excellent service.

“Everyone’s collecting information, and you’ve got to be able to put that information through in the right way and understand what customers are trying to do, so you can provide them with what they’re looking for. Then look at your own infrastructure and the way that your operations are set out, the way that your teams are set out, to support that offering to your customers.”

“This business, in particular, has been in the industry for the past 12 years, and we have been online in a big way from the beginning. So we’ve already experienced many of these learnings and we’re making sure our infrastructure is supporting what we’re learning from that big data so that we can be the most productive that we can.”

Want to streamline operations to support your growth and expansion? Try Tanda for 14 days for free, no credit card required. 

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How much do full-time staff really cost?

Being in the business of managing staff costs, we often hear people say that casual staff just cost so much more than their full time equivalents. I mean, that extra 25% is a killer, right? Especially for staff who work a fairly consistent schedule each week, it’s almost like free money. For a while there I went along with that, not really giving it much thought. But today the thought struck me – casuals miss out on plenty of benefits afforded to full and part timers, so are they really better off? I decided to investigate further. What follows may surprise you. First – how many days in a year does a full time employee work? Weeks in a Year: 52 Working Days in a Year: 260 So far so good. We’re going to ignore the 1 or 2 days that we’re off by, for the sake of a nice round number. Next, let’s look at this full time employee’s entitlements, in days. Annual Leave: 20 (4 weeks) Personal Leave: 10 (2 weeks) Public Holidays: 10 We’ll assume a 7.6 hour work day and 17.5% leave loading. So how many hours of leave are we paying? Annual Leave – Base: 152 Annual Leave – Loading: 26.6 Personal Leave: 76 Public Holidays: 76 Total Hours of Leave Paid: 330.6 Earlier we calculated how many days of work one can work in a year, now let’s subtract leave taken to get a more accurate figure. Days of Leave Taken: 40 Actual Days Worked in a Year: 220 Actual Hours Worked in a Year: 1672 Divide 330.6 (hours of leave paid) by 1672 (hours worked) and we get 19.77%. Remember, we are comparing this to the 25% loading paid for casual staff. So from this perspective, yes, your full time and part time staff are still cheaper – but only by 5.23%. And even that number is probably on the low side. We ignored long service leave and maternity leave because they are a bit more unreliable. Both they are also costs (or accruals) that can definitely add up! When you take into account the fact that you only have to pay casuals when you need them, it’s easy to see why more and more Australian employers are turning to casual staff. According to the ABS, this has been growing steadily since the 90’s, and today over 1 in 5 jobs in Australia are casual.

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Easter Penalty Rates 2015 — What you need to know about paying staff

Easter is coming up soon, and that means two things! A new season of Game of Thrones to feast on, and – perhaps less excitingly – public holiday rates to pay staff. As a business owner, accountant, or bookkeeper, it’s important to be aware of how public holiday rates over Easter and ANZAC Day should be paid in your state. First, let’s see when the holidays will be in 2014. You might be surprised! If your business is open on any of these public holidays, you’ll need to pay staff the appropriate public holiday rates. You should check your award, which will tell you exactly what multiplier or penalties to apply, often under a Public Holidays section. A common multiplier is 2.5x. Some businesses pay staff salaries, or pay casually “above award”. Public holiday penalties still apply! If you have a contract, it should cover this – check with Fair Work if you are unsure. Staff who don’t work on a public holiday If you have full or part time staff who should have worked on any of the weekday public holidays – Good Friday, Easter Monday, and Easter Tuesday in specific cases – they are still entitled to pay, even if they do not work. Generally you’ll pay at base rate for the hours staff would have been entitled to. Of course, if staff do work on the day, you’ll pay at a higher rate as dictated by the award (see above). But keep in mind: this only applies if they usually work on that day. For example, a part timer in Queensland who generally works Tuesday to Thursday probably wouldn’t get paid the public holidays because there’s no public holiday on those weekdays. Check your award/agreement to be sure! If your award dictates how rostered days off work, you should check to see if staff with an RDO on a public holiday are still paid. In some states, some kinds of businesses are not permitted to open on public holidays due to trading regulations. If this applies, you will probably still be required to pay staff who would otherwise work on that weekday. Again, if you’re not sure, it’s best to ask. Staff who work on a day that isn’t a public holiday Keep in mind that the rest of the award doesn’t shut off just because it’s Easter. For example, if you are in Tasmania and pay Saturday rates, you’ll still need to pay these on Easter Saturday (which is not a public holiday for you). Did you know… If an employee takes sick leave around a public holiday (eg. Thursday April 24 to Monday April 28), they still get paid the public holiday if they were otherwise supposed to work that day (ie. full/part time) If an employee takes annual leave, public holidays during the leave period don’t count towards their annual leave balance Public holidays do not need to be paid for staff on unpaid leave Staff cannot be forced to work on a public holiday if they have reasonable grounds for doing so. Common reasons include: the amount of notice given, family responsibilities (especially over Easter), and whether one could reasonably expect the business to be open on a public holiday. Tanda’s employee time clocks automatically interpret industry awards – including public holidays – so you can be sure you paid staff right, without tedious manually data entry Add the Fair Work Infoline to your speed dial, they are always happy to help. The number to call for any payroll queries is 131 394. Note: none of the above constitutes formal payroll advice. Always check with your accountant, bookkeeper, or Fair Work.

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Giving Employee Feedback: 7 Ways to Constructively Deliver Bad News

Wouldn’t management be so much easier if everyone just did their job? You might feel sometimes like your job description would better match that of a babysitter than a business manager. But the sad fact is, unless you provide your staff with proper leadership; productivity, efficiency, morale, and overall quality of work will suffer. Part of effective management is providing your personnel with feedback when they’ve done something incorrectly, or perhaps just less correctly than you would prefer. Ideally, you want to train your workforce to act as you would in a given situation. This takes time, patience, and consistent positive reinforcement. So how can you communicate to your beautiful and unique snowflakes that they’re not meeting your standards without alienating, offending, or irritating them? Here is a list of best practices that can help you deliver a difficult message in ways that will improve employee attitude, engagement, and performance. 1.      Focus on Positives Even if you’ve been stuck with the worst employee in the world, even if they come into work smelling like a Cypress Hill concert in un-ironed slacks made of organic hemp, you’ve got to find a silver lining. To be clear, this doesn’t mean sugar-coating the negatives. It just means balancing criticism with praise. Build employee confidence first, then present avenues for improvement. The thing to remember about creating a harmonious work environment is it begins and ends with being nice. The simplest gestures can prevent resentment, discontentment, and hurt feelings. Keep your employees happy, and you’ll be a much happier manager. 2.      Objectivity This can be tough. It’s important not to let your emotions get in the way of effective management. Subjectivity can get you into all sorts of trouble: favouritism, nepotism, and a plethora of other –isms worth avoiding. A cool head is needed for command decisions, plus your employees will reflect the attitudes you present to them. Come to work angry, and you’re likely to look out and see an office rife with cantankerousness. 3.      Always Deliver Negative Feedback in Person It’s a busy day, you hear a bad report, and you want to get it handled quickly. So you just shoot of an email with a textual reprimand. A very tempting scenario, but not the best idea. People can read into messages more or less than you intend. If there’s a problem with an employee important enough for you to respond personally, then it’s important enough to respond to it in person. 4.      Time your Feedback Correctly Timing is everything. You have to take the opportune moment. For minor infractions, or something of a sensitive nature (a conflict between employees for example), allow a bit of time to pass so that tempers might cool before addressing the situation. Similarly, don’t call an employee out in front of their peers. Wait for the right moment, when they’re not under scrutiny, to approach. You don’t want to embarrass an employee, and you never know what can get the blood running to someone’s cheeks. 5.      Location, Location, Location Along the same lines as timing, the location of a performance review can have a great impact on how receptive an employee might be to your suggestions. Go to an empty conference room, any neutral ground will do. 6.      Pay Attention to How You’re Being Perceived This means watching your phrasing and body language. Present problems in a sympathetic light, and avoid negative syntax: “I don’t think… You shouldn’t… This isn’t…” Maintain eye contact, without being creepy. Keep gesticulations, mannerisms, and movements calm and casual. Aggression is an animal instinct, don’t release the beast during a performance review. 7.      Be Clear With Your Criticisms, Leave No Room for Interpretation Convey your meaning quickly, clearly, and without ambiguity. Be direct with your employees, let them know exactly what you disapprove of, how they can improve, and if there’s a need for it: a warning as to what continued instances of the undesired behavior will result in. Alternatively, reinforce desired actions. If they’ve done anything right at all, mention it, and offer praise. Building an effective team is a complicated process, but armed with common sense and a healthy dose of positivity, you can put together an office environment that runs like a well-oiled machine.

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About the author

Jessica Genio-Ignacio

Jessie is a PR and Content Writer interested in the impact of tech and digital on people and businesses.

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