5 Ways a Work Chat App can Boost Productivity

Rosie Ramirez

7 March 2019    |   

Ever needed to talk to a staff member while they were working outside? Or needed to inform them about changes the night before an event? For many employers or managers, communicating with staff can be a challenge. In trying to reach employees through available channels like social media, details can fall through the cracks. They might miss recording a call. They might see messages too late. And often, there’s no way to archive conversations. That’s why having an app dedicated to work-related messages has several advantages. The digital revolution is an integral part of everyday life, so work processes and systems will need to change accordingly. Most employees today, across age groups, value the efficiency that technology brings to the workplace. Companies that know how to leverage apps and other modern tools have an edge over their competition. They are able to attract more employees and empower them to do their jobs well. Below are five ways that a work chat app can improve your office. Improved communication. Work apps are less formal than e-mail but more professional than social media. A dedicated app prompts employees to treat conversations with urgency and respect, but with candidness as well. They are able to interact more freely within the context of the task at hand. When they have a secure way to communicate, engagement among the employees is higher. And because all work-related conversations are in one platform, it streamlines the way everyone receives and provides feedback, helping staff concentrate better. Real-time responses. Work chat apps allow colleagues to coordinate in real time. This makes updating schedules, sharing facts, or sending links go faster than they normally would. Employees typically use email for less urgent matters or else more formal ones such as payroll. But when it comes to checking information or bouncing ideas around, using a chat app is much more effective. Real-time responses make for a more faster, more dynamic workplace. Group discussion. Work chat apps are much more effective in promoting engagement among groups than email threads. This is especially useful for teams who are working in a project together from different locations, or for those who have the option to work remotely. You can create groups and label them as necessary for every situation. You can tag individuals within the group (@name) to call their attention. This helps ensures that nobody oversees the important stuff. These features make correspondence flow faster and keep the discussion going. Increased collaboration. Business apps let employees collaborate better because they allow attachment of images and documents, screen sharing, video conference calls, and integration with other services. Employees no longer have to be in the same room to get work done. For teams working across different time zones, these features can make or break a project. When employees can collaborate, solutions arise quickly and can be implemented immediately. Archiving. Business apps archive all communications and have great universal search features. You will not lose any details because data is stored on the cloud and everything is available to all members. You can even easily review all discussions. This increases accountability for your staff. It also decreases the chances that instructions will be forgotten. Tracking progress and assignments are also easier with a dedicated business app. Engaging employees begins with investing in solutions that can improve the workplace in fundamental ways. It can simply begin with the way you communicate every day. One app that can modernise how you communicate at work is Tanda Chat. You can publish shifts, acknowledge progress, and deliver feedback from both desktop and mobile. You can even share updates to individuals or entire teams to ensure that everyone is always on the same page. To get the most value out of your money, invest in a business chat app that integrates with other programs. For example, Tanda also automates time and attendance by taking care of rosters and integrating with payroll. Any shift-related updates can then be coursed through just one system. And because the advantages far outweigh the initial cost of investment, many businesses today are choosing the workforce management software for them. Once you do this for your business, you will be more equipped to take on bigger challenges.

Ever needed to talk to a staff member while they were working outside? Or needed to inform them about changes the night before an event? For many employers or managers, communicating with staff can be a challenge. In trying to reach employees through available channels like social media, details can fall through the cracks. They might miss recording a call. They might see messages too late. And often, there’s no way to archive conversations. That’s why having an app dedicated to work-related messages has several advantages.

The digital revolution is an integral part of everyday life, so work processes and systems will need to change accordingly. Most employees today, across age groups, value the efficiency that technology brings to the workplace. Companies that know how to leverage apps and other modern tools have an edge over their competition. They are able to attract more employees and empower them to do their jobs well. Below are five ways that a work chat app can improve your office.

  1. Improved communication.

    Work apps are less formal than e-mail but more professional than social media. A dedicated app prompts employees to treat conversations with urgency and respect, but with candidness as well. They are able to interact more freely within the context of the task at hand. When they have a secure way to communicate, engagement among the employees is higher. And because all work-related conversations are in one platform, it streamlines the way everyone receives and provides feedback, helping staff concentrate better.

  2. Real-time responses.

    Work chat apps allow colleagues to coordinate in real time. This makes updating schedules, sharing facts, or sending links go faster than they normally would. Employees typically use email for less urgent matters or else more formal ones such as payroll. But when it comes to checking information or bouncing ideas around, using a chat app is much more effective. Real-time responses make for a more faster, more dynamic workplace.

  3. Group discussion.

    Work chat apps are much more effective in promoting engagement among groups than email threads. This is especially useful for teams who are working in a project together from different locations, or for those who have the option to work remotely. You can create groups and label them as necessary for every situation. You can tag individuals within the group (@name) to call their attention. This helps ensures that nobody oversees the important stuff. These features make correspondence flow faster and keep the discussion going.

  4. Increased collaboration.

    Business apps let employees collaborate better because they allow attachment of images and documents, screen sharing, video conference calls, and integration with other services. Employees no longer have to be in the same room to get work done. For teams working across different time zones, these features can make or break a project. When employees can collaborate, solutions arise quickly and can be implemented immediately.

  5. Archiving.

    Business apps archive all communications and have great universal search features. You will not lose any details because data is stored on the cloud and everything is available to all members. You can even easily review all discussions. This increases accountability for your staff. It also decreases the chances that instructions will be forgotten. Tracking progress and assignments are also easier with a dedicated business app.

Engaging employees begins with investing in solutions that can improve the workplace in fundamental ways. It can simply begin with the way you communicate every day. One app that can modernise how you communicate at work is Tanda Chat. You can publish shifts, acknowledge progress, and deliver feedback from both desktop and mobile. You can even share updates to individuals or entire teams to ensure that everyone is always on the same page.

To get the most value out of your money, invest in a business chat app that integrates with other programs. For example, Tanda also automates time and attendance by taking care of rosters and integrating with payroll. Any shift-related updates can then be coursed through just one system. And because the advantages far outweigh the initial cost of investment, many businesses today are choosing the workforce management software for them. Once you do this for your business, you will be more equipped to take on bigger challenges.

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Traffic at a restaurant ebbs and flows with the times. One moment you’ll only have a handful of patrons, the next an avalanche of customers are queuing at the entrance, waiting to be served. From being overstaffed at a certain time period, suddenly your wait staff are juggling multiple tables while tickets are lining up like crazy at the kitchen. How do you effectively plan your coverage so that you get the most out of the staff that you have? Forecast Sales and Traffic First things first, of course, is that you have to effectively forecast your restaurant’s sales and traffic at any given day. It might not be an exact science, but Bplans has an in-depth article that can guide you in creating a clear sales forecast. In summary, the article advises that you calculate the number of meals your restaurant can serve based on the number of tables and seats. Multiply those meals based on the amount of service at any given time (in their example, it’s one service during lunch and two services for dinner). Then vary it based on assumptions per day or week (maybe less on Mondays and more on the weekends). And finally, line it up in a spreadsheet. Determine Your FTEs, Make Sure That You Have 2 FTEs more In Any Given Shift So, you have a good sales projection available. Now, it’s time to review your staffing and check if you have enough of everyone for any given shift. It all boils down to the FTEs. FTE stands for “full-time equivalent,” or the number of hours a full-time employee can render in a week. According to this article from TheRestaurantExpert.com, back-of-house employees have 40 hours in one FTE. Those on the front-of-house, on the other hand, have five shifts in one FTE. The same article deep dives on ensuring that your restaurant has enough people through FTEs. Long story short: they recommend to always have two FTEs more than your forecast dictates so that you have enough people covering the restaurant. With that as a rule-of-thumb, you can be creative with your staffing. Cross-train staff so that they can do more than one task. Have bartenders also learn how to cook simple dishes or have new wait staff also cover bussing or washing dishes. Craft Your Rota Once everything is set, it’s time for you to make the weekly rota. Make this task quicker for you by leveraging online rota software that replaces the old-school way of using whiteboards or Excel spreadsheets. Take into consideration your staff’s leave request vis-à-vis your traffic. Remember to send the weekly shift schedule to your staff at least two weeks in advance so that your team is well in the know when they have to time in. Whether you’re a start-up restaurateur or a veteran with a dozen restaurants under your belt, ensuring coverage can make you have sleepless nights. But with a proper plan that you consistently execute and fine-tune, your customers are guaranteed enjoy great service any time of the day.

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5 Restaurant Hiring Mistakes You Should NEVER Make

A restaurant’s X factor is the people running it. With that, it’s important to make sure that you’re not making any mistakes when hiring for your restaurant. You might be plating up great food every day, but it won’t lead to rave reviews online if your staff aren’t up to par. To help you out in creating the perfect team for your restaurant, we’ve listed down the top 5 hiring mistakes you should avoid at all costs when recruiting new staff. Not Having a Clear-Cut Job Description You may think filling out job descriptions for your restaurant is a piece of cake, but it’s not. Neglecting to be clear-cut during this process will bite you back in the end. When starting the hiring process, you should dedicate a lot of time in creating your staff’s job descriptions. Make sure you be as precise as possible when listing out your personnel’s tasks. “It’s not just ‘here’s a job, you’re a server and you sell food,’” David Scott Peters of TheRestaurantExpert.com said in this video. According to him, the job description of a restaurant server or waiter should look something like this: He or she is expected to greet customers within two minutes He or she should introduce himself or herself then take an appetizer order They should be back within two minutes to take your customer’s order Within five minutes, the order should be in the POS with 100% accuracy And so on, and so forth The job description should not just identify what the job is. It should indicate how to do the job, how well the job should be done, and by when the job should be done. Not Using Referrals So you’ve made comprehensive job descriptions and posted it on your company website, on social media, or at recruitment sites. But solely relying on these channels can only go so far in ensuring that your restaurant has high-quality staff. According to this article from ERE Media, those hired using employee referrals are more likely to stay on board beyond two years than those hired from job boards or career sites. Having an excellent employee referral program within your restaurant pays dividends to both management and staff. According to this article from the National Restaurant Association, team members are highly motivated when there is a referral system in place. Starbucks recruiting manager Tom Tice adds that “the real value is that they’re getting good people to work aside.” Referrals are not just limited to existing employees. The same NRA article also advocates for “second-interview referrals.” Encourage existing candidates to bring in someone they know on their second interview to fill in other open positions. Chances are, they’ll bring someone good to impress you. Hiring Those Who Don’t Fit In With the Culture It goes without saying that a restaurant should run a tight ship. Peak hours mean cooks churning out dish after dish like clockwork, waiters rushing from kitchen to table every so often, and hosts patiently accommodating those waiting to be served. It could be an extremely stressful environment that leads to a lot of personal squabbles at the heat of the moment. This is exactly why your restaurant staff should have excellent rapport bound by common culture. For celebrity chef-restaurateur and the host of Vice TV’s Fresh Off the Boat Eddie Huang, what he wants in his restaurant are people with a sense of humor. “It translates into great customer service,” he says. “It also helps contribute to the vibe of the restaurant. TheRestaurantExpert.com’s David Scott Peters’ video from earlier also talks about how important culture is in a restaurant. For him, he’d hire someone for culture over experience. Peters added that it’s easy for him to teach someone how to count out a bar drawer. But he can’t get employees “to show up and smile every day.” “If you are not a fit for my culture, you’re going to be a cancer in my business,” he says. Not Doing Interviews the Right Way It’s easy to hire the wrong person when you think of the interview process as just a formality. It goes without saying that there is more to a candidate than just what they look like on paper. It is during the interview phase you’ll be able to find out if they’re compatible with the job description and the culture you are building in your restaurant. All you need to do is do it right. Typsy has an article with tips on hiring and keeping restaurant staff. Inside it is a list of questions that you can use for your next interview. Some of the questions we highly recommend are: What do you think is most important when dealing with customers? How do you cope with stressful situations? What would you do if you got 30 minutes of downtime? What kind of work environment do you shine in? What’s your own favourite restaurant? What do you like about the industry? What is something you didn’t like about your last job? What are your expectations of this position? To further help you nail the interview process, the NRA also has an article with tips on the right way to interview the candidate. Neglecting to Call References and Doing Background Checks You might have to hire from all walks of life: from culinary school graduates to part-time high-school students. You need to know for sure that they can be trusted with your business. Calling upon references and doing background checks is one sure-fire way to give you that peace of mind when hiring your restaurant’s staff. Opentable recommends that you ask each candidate to provide three professional references when they apply. Make sure that at least two of three people named get back at you before moving forward with the application process. For those who are going to handle money on a daily basis, such as servers and managers, a quick background check is crucial to find out their credibility based on their previous work history and other factors. Having the right people on your staff is the key ingredient for every successful restaurant. And being careless on the hiring stage will guarantee a difficult time for you in the long run. Make sure to avoid these mistakes and set your A-team’s rota the right way to ensure your restaurant is a well-oiled machine any time of the day.

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Rosie Ramirez

Our team's goal is to provide practical advice for business owners and managers across industries.

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Traffic at a restaurant ebbs and flows with the times. One moment you’ll only have a handful of patrons, the next an avalanche of customers are queuing at the entrance, waiting to be served. From being overstaffed at a certain time period, suddenly your wait staff are juggling multiple tables while tickets are lining up […]

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5 Restaurant Hiring Mistakes You Should NEVER Make

A restaurant’s X factor is the people running it. With that, it’s important to make sure that you’re not making any mistakes when hiring for your restaurant. You might be plating up great food every day, but it won’t lead to rave reviews online if your staff aren’t up to par. To help you out […]

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