Top 5 Restaurant Staff Scheduling Software Tools

Last updated on May 30th, 2018 at 03:41 pm

PlandayOne of the hardest businesses to run effectively is the restaurant business. Research shows that independent restaurants have around a 60% failure rate and the main reason that they fail is due to a lack of business management. Yes, failure is not down to your ability to cook nice food, it’s based on how well you run the business. In fact, research shows that 46% of restaurants fail not due to lack of knowledge but due to bad planning and financial management.

One area where business can often struggle is in the area of staff shift management. Once you have more than a handful of  staff working across a busy week with multiple varied shift, managing it with paper and excel becomes: difficult, confusing, overwhelming and time consuming. It can lead to under-staffing and over-staffing both of which will ultimately harm business prosperity. That’s why one of the most crucial planning tools that a restaurant should be using is a restaurant staff scheduling software tool, AKA staff rota software.

Below are 5 of the best restaurant staff scheduling tools on the market.

If you are a smaller company of perhaps 20 or less employees you might not need software, in which case try out our simple Downloadable Excel Staff Rota. 

1.Planday. This is especially suited to restaurant staff scheduling. Why? It’s highly automated and user-friendly meaning this can be managed in the office or on the go, perhaps behind the restaurant bar or in the kitchen. It has drag and drop shifts, meaning you can literally drag and drop shifts into your schedule, allowing you to set up shifts at lightning speed.ios-mockup-hires1It also includes templates, meaning that once you have a core shift pattern you can just copy it into the following week and make minor adjustments to suit that week, allowing you to set up shifts with minimal effort.

It also factors in vacation requests too, so you’ll never have to worry about trying to schedule one of your restaurant workers who is actually in Belize.

Also, as you would expect with a cutting edge software provider the tool has excellent mobile based features. The mobile application has internal messaging so employees can be kept abreast of schedules on the go. The shift info features allows them to notify the employee of shift start time and location. The mobile application allows employees to swap shifts. Employees will love it as they are empowered and able to work flexibly and restaurant duty managers will love it as so much of the staff management is automated.

It’s used by national restaurant brands such as Just Eat, Ellary’s Greens, Best Western, and Sophie’s Steakhouse. It’s the perfect staff scheduling tool for restaurants and definitely worth a close look. Try Planday Today

2.Findmyshift online staff rotasThis is a market leading, cloud-based restaraunt staff scheduling tool. It’s a well refined tool that’s been developed using 12 years of feedback from thousands of managers, and is used by national restaurant chain Subway Key features include drag and drop scheduling, (so it’s quick and easy to build and maintain large schedules), an inbuilt time sheet with automated reports for payroll and cost reporting. It also has a holiday management facility so you see when staff are unavailable and work out their remaining holiday allowances. It comes with messaging and notification functionality so staff can be updated about shifts via email, text or push notification. As if that wasn’t enough, it also has daily shift notification functionality so staff can be reminded of shifts the day before. Businesses pay a flat rate of £20 a month. It’s got to be worth a try. Check it out here.

3.StaffTRAK Rota. If you are a smaller company of perhaps 20 or lessemployees you might not need software, and if this is the case why not try out our simple Downloadable Excel Staff Rota. It’s easy to use and you can start managing shifts in no-time using software you are already familiar with. Try it out now.

4.7Shifts. This is another restaurant staff scheduling tool, and a massive improvement over pen and paper or excel scheduling. It has powerful auto-scheduling and custom shift templates which enables the system to actually build a schedule that takes into account staff availability and your weekly shift requirements.


It’s ‘instant notification’ feature means that staff are notified as soon as their individual shift schedule is published or if their shift pattern is changed/updated. Mobile apps allow duty managers to approve or decline time off requests, shift trades and so on.

It also includes cost control features making it easy for you to monitor daily and weekly staff costs in real time, and ensure that you don’t run over budget. It includes an instant alert feature too, so you are notified if restaurant staff go into overtime. This is another tool that will take your staff schedule management and cost control to a higher level of professionalism. It’s used by 70,000 restaurant professionals across the world. is and an exciting best of breed, light-weight, (in a good way),  restaurant staff scheduling mobile app. It is built with restaurants in  mind and was founded by a a professional whose family have over a century of combined restaurant experience. It has all the features that a busy restaurant owner or restaurant duty manager would want to see such as GPS alerts, Notifications and GPS checkin. It’s also completely mobile based meaning that staff and busy managers can manage their schedules on the go.

scheduling-software-home This is another very powerful restaurant scheduling software tool. The features that restaurant managers will find most appealing are without doubt the auto-scheduling functionality that will enable you to auto-generate schedules based on availability and job skills. You can also copy schedules from previous weeks or use a template. Staff can view schedules on the web or via a mobile app.


The mobile app also allows staff to request shift changes and time-off requests. This system can even help you comply with overtime laws by preventing employees from being scheduled over unless approve by a supervisor. It also prohibits shift changes that place an employee into overtime.

The system will also calculate wages for you and can allow you to project costs by day, week and month. This is another great staff scheduling tool to help you run your restaurant effectively.

7.Snap Schedule. This scheduling tool is perfect for the restaurateur. It doesn’t matter if you are running a local restaurant or running a large chain with varying hours, this tool will enable you to effortlessly schedule your staff. So, what are it’s most powerful features.

As you would expect of any best-of-breed restaurant scheduling software tool, it has drag and drop functionality, making it incredibly easy for you to assign shifts, mark time-off or move/copy assignments for your restaurant staff. The tool also makes it easy for you track vacations, sick-leave and other time-off requests, and has the special feature of allowing you to track training and skill levels, meaning you can assign people according to skill set. The drag and drop functionality also permits you to visually assign breaks, duties and tasks of any length.

This tool will also enable you to avoid scheduling conflicts by flagging: overlapping shifts, insufficient rest between shifts, over-working, and lack of the right skills.

The system has a multiple location features so you can manage and assign restaurant staff to shifts across multiple locations.

The system will also compute pay and can handle complicated criteria like overtime, shift premiums and incentive pay, and can also produce a fully populated time sheet for payroll. It has everything a restaurateur or duty manager could want in a scheduling software tool.

Top 3 Must Read-Books For Coffee Shops Startups:

  1. The Daily Grind: How To Open and Run a Coffee Shop That Makes Money, by Andrew and Claire Bowen. 4.5/5 star aggregated reviews score on Amazon. It’s got a lot of valuable tips and advice from people who have actually run successful coffee shops and contains many real-life scenarios you might face in a coffee shop.
  2. The Coffee Boys’ Step by Step Guide to Setting up and Managing Your Own Coffee Bar: How to open a coffee bar that actually last and makes money. 4.5/5 star aggregated reviews score on Amazon. This is another book that is loaded with helpful tips and advice from successful coffee shop entrepreneurs who really have been there and done that. It’s very practical and written in a humorous tone.
  3. Start and Run Your Own Coffee Shop and Lunch Bar: 2nd edition (How to Small Business Start-Ups)4.5/5 star aggregated reviews score on Amazon. This is the book is written from the perspective of a first-time coffee shop owner’s perspective.

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