July 31, 2023
Lauren Platero

Labor Force Automation: 5 Tips for Employing a Smaller Team

Every business owner must employ a labor force. But how can they do so while maintaining a minimal labor cost? Well, that’s where labor force automation enters the scene. 

Digital solutions like restaurant automation tools allow eateries to do more with less. In turn, they’re able to optimize all their resources. Not only does this lead to greater operational efficiency, but higher profits, too. 

This blog should serve as a guide on all topics relevant to your restaurant’s labor force. Whether you want to implement strategies to reduce labor work for the most part or simply lessen the cost of labor, we’ve got you covered! Now, let’s begin. 

Labor Force Definition 

A labor force refers to the group of people who work within a company or industry. It comprises numerous roles and hierarchies. Depending on the industry or niche market, there may also be sub-sectors within a labor force. This concept is most popular within complex spaces, like in the SaaS or hospitality industry.

Labor Force Automation Definition 

Labor force automation refers to labor saving devices and software that streamline standard tasks. It puts mundane and frequent duties on autopilot, making it simpler for the labor force to be productive. Such labor solutions also help improve customer service and maintain cash flow. Consequently, workforce management becomes a streamlined aspect of the brand.

Some of the most common labor force automation examples include:

  • Self-service systems, like kiosks
  • Automated cooking gadgets 
  • Data analytics dashboard
  • Pre-written customer service bots

5 Tips for Employing a Smaller Team

Once you establish ways to reduce manual labor in your business, you won’t believe that you went so long without them. Below, you’ll learn all you need to know about five tips for employing a smaller labor force.

1. Believe In Quality Over Quantity

Before you can make decisions about growing your team, you should conduct labor forecasting. Then, you’ll know exactly how many people you need to hire while staying within your budget. Then, it comes time to select the right talent. 

Remember that when hiring a smaller team, quality trumps quantity. A select few highly skilled people can produce more results than a large team of hires that don't meet your qualifications. Luckily, there are automation tools that can help. 

For instance restaurant HR software can assist eateries in the hiring process by weaning out unqualified candidates. Then, the staff can spend more time interviewing ideal applicants. Hopefully, going this route will also benefit long-term employee engagement.

2. Integrate Innovative Tech Solutions

There’s no such thing as automation without innovative solutions. In order to do more with less, every business must adopt technologies based on their needs. As you’ll quickly come to realize, the best part about technology is that it can be preprogrammed to simplify daily tasks. So even with a small team, it can make up for those who the business doesn’t employ. 

For instance, any business within the hospitality space can benefit from an inventory management app. Collecting inventory quantities can take more time than you’d think. So when you’re able to see numbers drop as related items sell, all calculations are ready for you. You’ll never have to estimate the reorder point either, since you can schedule it ahead of time.  

Then, you can’t forget about the solutions that literally remove duties from the staff’s workload. Tools like self ordering kiosks and tabletop devices are essential. Even in the event of a labor shortage, these kinds of solutions can help fill in the gaps. 

Restaurant Labor eBook

3. Digitize Staff Development for Simplicity 

There are many digital options for staff development. For instance, almost every industry offers online courses. Or, you can go the extra mile and create digital training materials for your employees. 

With a smaller team, you need to ensure that everyone acquires the resources to succeed. But in these cases, they might need to understand the duties of various roles or departments. 

Let’s say a restaurant manager is trying to employ fewer people. This might mean that servers will have to cross-train for the host position, and vice versa. Or, the dishwashers and chefs may need to be capable of doing each other’s jobs.

This is a prime example of implementing staff optimization strategies. Over time, it should lead to a more efficient yet productive workplace. If not, it might be a sign that you need to enhance the resources you provide.

4. Maintain Simple Communication

When you employ a smaller team, there will be more topics of conversation amongst fewer people. With this in mind, it’s important to simplify all lines of communication. If not, it can defeat the purpose of employing fewer people. 

One solution to steady communication is to use cloud technology. Systems like project management apps or cloud POS systems allow everyone easy access to varying insights. This way, every employee is on the same page. 

The best part about cloud-based solutions is that they often include communication features. Whether employees need to send a message or leave a note, they can do so on such platforms. As you can imagine, the ability to keep things orderly will help maintain employee retention.

5. Outsource Marketing Automation Tools and Workers 

Regardless of your business model or industry, marketing efforts can be extremely time-consuming. This is primarily because there are so many types of marketing and promotion. On top of that, there are so many working parts to such efforts. 

For instance, implementing an email marketing strategy is far more than just sending emails. It involves creating a mailing list, coming up with promotions, and tailoring copy and visuals accordingly. 

On the other hand, efforts like social media marketing and paid ads take just as much time. These kinds of efforts have more of a photography or graphic design aspect, in addition to writing copy. But more importantly, this area of work requires staying engaged across all brand accounts. Then, calculating and interpreting the social media ROI can be a whole project in itself. 

What we’re trying to say is that your business type must implement at least one kind of marketing style. However, it can take more time than what your employees have allotted for in their schedule. So, try employing contractors that specialize in the style(s) you’re interested in. This will save on labor-related costs while preventing work overload amongst your team.

Frequently Asked Questions About the Labor Force 

The labor force keeps each and every industry afloat. And even though there are ways to automate manual labor, there are still numerous reasons why labor is valuable. As a brief recap, read on to learn about some additional information and fun facts about the world’s labor force. 

What Is Considered the Labor Force?

The labor force consists of civilians, sixteen years of age or older, who are employed or looking for work. With this said, the term also refers to those that are unemployed.

How Big Is the US Labor Force?

The United States has a labor force of about 166,930,000 people. This is roughly 50 percent of the country, in contrast to its 334,233,800-person population.

What Is the Labor Force vs. WorkForce? 

Labor force and workforce are two terms that are synonymous with one another. You can use both terms interchangeably, as they have the same definition.

Who Has the Largest Labor Force?

As of 2023, China has the largest labor force in the world. They have roughly 791,483,000 people within their labor force. Meanwhile, the United States has about 166,930,000 labor force workers.

What Are the Four Groups of People That Are Not In the Labor Force?

The four groups of people that are not in the labor force are:

  1. Preschool children 
  2. School children 
  3. Retired 
  4. Caretakers or stay-at-home parents
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Key Takeaways 

Employing a smaller team doesn’t always result in chaos. Once you put systems in place that reduce work and boost efficiency, you’ll quickly be on the road to success. Need some assistance in choosing automation tools? Revolution Ordering makes it easy for restaurants to offer delivery services. Book a demo now to learn all about our advanced suite of off-premise solutions! Doing more with less has never been easier.