Owning and running a restaurant is challenging – but try doing it with four Tim Hortons, like Jason! Quick service restaurants tend to have extremely busy peak times, are sometimes overstaffed when the rush dies down, and the employee turnover is very, very high.
As an owner and operator, Jason is constantly on-the-go and there’s always more to do. From staffing to financials to managing communications with head offices, he’s responsible for it all. When asked about the tougher parts of his role, Jason pointed to employee retention.
“You expect to have high turnover but even still, when it happens, it happens quickly. It’s tough trying to stay relevant with staff – they’re usually seasonal like students for example. They may be free throughout the whole summer but their availability may change drastically once school starts up again. Or, they may choose to stop working altogether to focus on studying.”
In this fast-paced environment, effective staff scheduling plays a crucial role in maximizing profits and managing the seasonality of employees. A good process and tool for creating schedules can make all the difference between keeping a good general manager or having to regularly hire and train a new one due to turnover.
But, these weren’t the only challenges Jason faced. Unsurprisingly, the impacts of the covid-19 pandemic continue to make things difficult. With the cost of commodities and labour constantly on the rise, increased inflation, and the shift to remote or hybrid work, Jason and his team have to work harder than ever to stay on top of who their customers are and how to keep them happy (and returning!). He knew that since the whole team had to be on the same page to do this, communication would be the key to success.
“When there are important announcements to share with all of our employees, we need to get the information to them quickly and efficiently. I don’t want to spend hours sitting on phone calls with each and every employee. I need something that can track who’s read what so I know who’s aware of things and who may need a nudge.”
In Jason’s search for a software solution that could help him and his team run and optimize day-to-day staff operations like scheduling and team communication, he considered Clearview, ADP, and Ameego. He was looking for a platform that was easy to implement and use, a responsive support team behind the product, and of course, a product that does the job.
“When I got on my first sales call with Ameego, I knew I didn’t just find the right product, but I also found the right team for me. Everyone at Ameego had such in-depth knowledge about what it’s like to work in, or own and operate a restaurant; it was clear that the people behind the product had many years of experience in the industry. I like that Ameego is built for restaurants and not a scheduling program that has adaptations for restaurants.”
One of Jason’s favourite parts of the product demo? Seeing first-hand how easy it was to use Ameego – because if it wasn’t, his staff wouldn’t adopt it. With managing what seems to be an endless and time-pressing list of tasks, “learn a new product” wasn’t going to be a priority.
“Ameego’s software is the best-in-class platform for restaurants. We used to spend hours creating schedules with pen and paper – ‘vintage scheduling,’ if you will. We had people staffed but it wasn’t always accurate and certainly not optimized. Now, my managers save up to 20 hours every month and since we’ve had Ameego for a while, that adds up to thousands of hours and dollars saved.”
Beyond Ameego’s easy-to-use scheduling function, the POS integration also helps make running four Tim Hortons more manageable for Jason.
“Manually pulling sales data and combing through all of it to make sure it’s separated by drive-through, storefront, or bakery and then having to break it all down in 15 minute increments? No thanks. I’m happy Ameego takes care of that for me.”
While the Ameego product is high performing, we were also thrilled that Jason shared he felt supported – no matter what situation he was in or when it happened.
“In the restaurant industry, things can happen at any time. I’ve been able to easily connect with the Ameego team during high-stress moments and every time, they’ve let me know they’re on it. It really does give me peace of mind.”
And, as a software solution that aims to service the everchanging restaurant industry, we always invite our clients to let us know how they’re liking the product and what additional features they’d like to see.
“Being able to provide feedback on the product so that the Ameego team can build functionalities that makes my life easier has made all the difference. Ameego has done an incredible job at proving their value time and time again.”