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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Not sure how to set your shift schedule? Just follow your customer

I have never met a restaurateur that enjoys doing their weekly staff schedule. It is quite a juggling act, taking into consideration that each employee does specific tasks during different times of the day. So what is the best way to schedule staff shifts? How can you set it up that everybody gets the most out of everyone’s time? I was just at National Restaurant Show in Chicago, where Tanda was one of the exhibitors. It was quite an insightful four days, roaming around the show floor discovering the latest trends in the restaurant industry. At the same time, I got to chat with industry veterans that have been in the industry literally for 50 years. One of them shared with me this easy-to-implement method of shift scheduling. He simply put: your shift schedule should follow your customer. According to him, the best way to properly schedule your shifts is by charting your customer touch points from the moment they enter the restaurant down to when they leave the establishment. This customer-focused approach resonated with me as it aligned with my beliefs on how a company’s staffing levels should be in sync with their customer service structure. Who’s First? Who’s Next? Who’s Last? The people who should clock in first are the first people your customers see. They are the hosts, greeters, or maître ds. They are the ones responsible for greeting people at the door, taking and holding reservations, and guiding them to their table. So they should start ahead of the pack. Once customers are seated, that’s the time servers come in to take their order. This means that they should be the ones who clock in next. People generally take 15 minutes to get seated and order. By this time, you will definitely want your kitchen staff already at their stations, ready to cook and deliver each dish for service. Tables generally turn over within an hour these days. That means your dish washers have to start working an hour and 15 minutes after your first guest enters the restaurant. Now, service is over and guests are departing the establishment. So you may start sending your servers home an hour after your last guest sits down.   Using data from your point of sale (POS), Tanda helps you visualize your customers’ flow through your restaurant. This enables you to match your staffing schedule accordingly.

Industry Insights US    |   

Ensure Enough Coverage for Your Restaurant at Any Given Time

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 servers 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 lunchtime and two services for dinnertime). 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 servers also cover bussing or washing dishes. Craft Your Schedule Once everything is set, it’s time for you to make the weekly schedule. Make this task quicker for you by leveraging online scheduling 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 clock 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.

Product Updates US    |   

Tanda Time Clock Now Available for the Desktop

We at Tanda are pleased to announce that our time clock application is now available to download for Windows and macOS devices. Starting today, employees can have the same experience they’ve always enjoyed with the tablet version of our employee time clock, but now on the desktop. It accurately records employee attendance and compares it with the weekly schedule. It also updates the timesheets automatically to the cloud and stores it offline when the device is not connected. And if the computer has a webcam installed, it can also take a selfie of the employee when they clock in and out just like the mobile app! Employees can clock in and out in their respective desktop workstations instead of going to wherever the tablet is located. It can also be a backup option if and when your office’s main Tanda Time Clock is unavailable. Remote employees can also use the Tanda Time Clock for the Desktop to clock in and out using their own computers. Existing users can click here to find out how to download the Tanda Time Clock for Desktop. Are you a new user? Signup for free here to use Tanda to track time and attendance for your business, and so much more.  

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About the author

Rosie Ramirez

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

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Employee Scheduling

Not sure how to set your shift schedule? Just follow your customer

Chart your customer journey across your restaurant, then build your weekly shift schedule accordingly.

Industry Insights US

Ensure Enough Coverage for Your Restaurant at Any Given Time

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 servers are juggling multiple tables while tickets are lining up like […]

Product Updates US

Tanda Time Clock Now Available for the Desktop

We at Tanda are pleased to announce that our time clock application is now available to download for Windows and macOS devices. Starting today, employees can have the same experience they’ve always enjoyed with the tablet version of our employee time clock, but now on the desktop. It accurately records employee attendance and compares it […]

More Resources

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