97% of businesses believe project management is critical to performance. However, according to research conducted by Standish Group, less than 1/3 of projects are finished as planned – on time and on budget. This discrepancy shows a wide gap within the project management field. For restaurants, time tracking software becomes all the more crucial, since it is imperative to gauge the operational efficiency of employees.
Time tracking software is a great tool for recording employees’ time at work for restaurants and other services businesses. The data generated by this tool can help businesses perform better in the field of project management, increase efficiency by monitoring payroll, and obtain a comprehensive understanding of the organization’s operation in terms of length of processes. Because this data is so important to a business, it only makes sense to pay closer attention to it and to choose the right tool for collecting it.
Time tracking software can be used for several purposes – managerial and complex, process-oriented, or simply for evaluating efficiency of a workforce. Regardless of your specific need, consider the following time-tracking software functionalities before you make your choice:
Is cloud integration possible?
Public cloud storage systems will grow by more than 44% in the next five years. This means the cloud will likely take over on-premises technology due to its ease and accessibility. A cloud-integrated restaurant time tracking software can provide various multi-faceted advantages to a business:
- An opportunity to include all employees, whether in-house staff, in the field employees, temporary workers, consultants, or anyone else. This can mean including the data on permanent waiters, temporary waiters, cleaning staff, restaurant managers, and even the delivery staff. Without geographic restrictions, employee data is always accessible, regardless of their remote or vacation status.
- The availability of central management. When data is stored on a business’ in-house servers, everything must go through the IT team. In doing this, management processes become inefficient because of the additional time required to get the right data at the right time. The cloud provides instant access without the delays associated with on-premise IT solutions.
Can custom reporting be handled efficiently?
Restaurant time tracking software includes many different options and variants, from standalone solutions with time tracking at its core to those with added functionalities to off-the-shelf software packages for accounting or project management. Regardless of the chosen solution, it is imperative to ensure it includes custom reporting functionality.
The software should be capable of compiling data and providing comprehensive reports. It’s not just about reports of employee time, but also reports including conclusive remarks. For instance, rather than simply providing the time an employee put in; the software should be able to divide the work hours, weighted according to the project being worked on. The software should record all data, classify and present it in an analytic format for managers to interpret.
Does the time tracking software offer real-time monitoring?
Your restaurant’s time tracking software should act as a bridge for overall project management and garnering real time data. Managers should be able to track real-time data on all employees in the restaurant to determine whether the order to delivery times are as per the required standards or not. For this reason, relevant analytics reporting is important.
A significant portion of service industry businesses rely on invoicing. Due to the added time constraints placed on employees, invoicing becomes complicated for small businesses. Some businesses wrap up invoicing in 30 days, while others only take a week. Regardless, everyone should receive the fair weighted wage as per their contribution. Time tracking software with real-time data helps with this.
Some brands of time tracking software come with an invoicing function. Usually included with accounting software, the time tracking functionalities start with temporary employees – consultants, freelancers, etc. Based on the business’ fixed hourly rates, it generates internal invoices. This allows businesses to see their workforce growth because it allows them to make timely payments.
Is it compatible with other software for integration?
Whether time tracking software is compatible with other software can be difficult to analyze because it requires businesses to consider their future requirements. When buying a time-tracking software, businesses usually only address their immediate need without considering how that might change with growth.
All major businesses should have some type of central enterprise resource planning (ERP) system to track the organization’s data and to keep management current with all developments. Such systems help with tracking operational expansions, which is why it’s important to maintain an integration option for your time-tracking software. If it runs smoothly now, it will likely run just as smoothly during times of growth.
It’s imperative to consider a time-tracking software that can integrate into a more comprehensive ERP system. For bigger players with both ERP systems and time-tracking software, it’s not a considerable issue. For those with a standalone restaurant time tracking software, this additional functionality should be considered.
Does it come with strong support?
Research published by Epicor/Redshift showed that 80% of respondents agreed that an ERP system was integral to their business; however, 40% of them also acknowledged that their ERP systems barely met the minimum requirements. This data speaks to the implementation of ERP systems. Time tracking software is nothing more than an add-on function of more complex ERP systems used by restaurants.
This same data can be extrapolated with respect to the implementation of time-tracking software. While the intentions are good and the technology is great, the results are merely average. Why? Because people on the ground level like the waiters, cooks and customer service teams who are interacting with the technology likely don’t understand it thoroughly enough.
So, it becomes essential to hire a vendor with significant and demonstrable after-sales services. While the software should not require maintenance besides updates, the support services including 24/7 customer care, customer education initiatives, and training modules be as much of a priority for any restaurant time tracking software.
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