The F Word Doesn’t Mean What You’re Thinking…

Thursday, November 24, 2016 - 16:36
The F Word Doesn’t Mean What You’re Thinking…

Area Managers traditionally spend a lot of time travelling between branches, providing training and ensuring that each branch is working in a uniform way but is sitting in traffic or struggling for phone signal, the best use of your Manager’s time?

New staff learn from experienced staff, and experienced staff know the short cuts. Does that sound negative? In fact, it can be brilliant. Your good staff have probably already discovered the most efficient way of working - watch, listen and learn. This is your Process Manual in action.

Unfortunately, bad habits can still sneak in and in a bid to tick off every task each day, staff sometimes forget the over-arching customer service goals of the company or find it difficult to get used to changes in the business.

So how do you ensure that staff start off, and continue, to complete all work in a uniform way?

F is for…

McDonalds, Starbucks, Hilton Hotels. Franchising works because a business and a brand can be easily replicated.

Using standard processes means that staff can easily cover shifts in different branches, statistics make sense across the business and everyone is working in the most customer friendly & cost efficient way.

Using standard till systems and processes also reduces conflict. Resentment can bubble when you think a colleague is being lazy or awkward when in fact they are unsure how to use the till system and keep making mistakes. This is the secret behind the efficiency of many franchises – by using the same software and systems, they can change their employees’ locations and move them depending on their needs. 

On-screen prompts remind even existing staff of the correct process and ensure that standards don’t slip over time.

Process Makes Perfect

Think through the process of precisely how your business works – if you were to write down every single task, from putting the bins out to creating the perfect “single shot 4 pumps sugar-free peppermint extra-hot non-fat white mocha.” you would be there a while, creating a beautiful Bible of detail to be kept safely in ‘the back office’… that nobody would ever read.

Instead, put the processes where they will be unavoidable and easily accessible to your staff on a daily basis – on their screens, at their fingertips, in front of their eyes each day – on the epos system.

Circumvent Christmas chaos by harmonising staff training electronically across your business. Businesses can be wary of letting New Starts loose on the tills when mistakes can mess up the accounting reports and mean ensuring that a manager is always nearby to authorise endless “refunds” in an effort to balance the figures. This can be, at best, a headache and, at worst, a real problem as profits / losses reports are botched.

A training mode allows new and existing staff the chance to figure out and test out new buttons and functions without affecting the weekly totals. Having this no-consequence opportunity to get to grips with the system makes staff feel more confident and capable.

On a less cheerful but commercially-savvy note, having a standard process and on-screen prompts can deter potentially dishonest staff from taking advantage of lackadaisical supervision and reduce “in house losses”.

Increasing staff confidence, prompting linked sales, reducing theft and consistently correct reports – what could be a better Christmas gift for your business?