Business Type Chain Rest. Indie Rest. Manage Operations Tips & Trends 3 min read

4 helpful employee retention strategies from our Partners.


Back in December, we talked about 5 ways to keep your employees happy and boost sales. Since then, we sat down with a few of our Partners for a second helping from the inside. 

1. Get all hands-on tech. 

Staffing keeps me up at night. We’re always looking to add higher quality chefs but can only find lower-level entry cooks. With over 50 people on staff, we’ve outgrown the ability to act as a mom-and-pop operation and have embraced technology to improve our operation as well as expand our staff. We were fortunate to keep our whole kitchen team during COVID, and the entire front of house team came back when the restaurant reopened.

Independent Restaurant Chain in Calgary

So, how can you use tech to help improve employee retention? Aside from keeping everyone on the same page, it’s a great way to help streamline processes. Invest in a good POS system that not only helps keep orders in check, but can also help with other tasks, like inventory and scheduling. 

2. Help them make a career of it.

Retaining employees has been a big challenge for us. Difficult to find people who do their role effectively and rely on them to do a good job and fulfil all their duties. Fifteen years ago, it was a career. Now it’s a stepping stone, and no dedication to the field. Very tough out there to find career people.

Independent Restaurant Chain in Montreal

As we mentioned in the last article, offering competitive salaries and benefits can go a long way to helping employees stay with you for the long haul. Another thing that can help is by offering them a chance to break the glass ceiling and move up the ranks in your business. That could mean giving them the opportunity to get promoted to a managerial position or adding responsibilities (for additional pay) to their current roles. Either way, employees are more likely to stay when they have an opportunity to move on up.

3. Say hello to human resources. 

With 200 full- and part-time employees across our five locations, the million-dollar question is how to keep our staff happy and motivated with so many changes to the labour market over the last couple years. We have a dedicated HR Manager to support ongoing recruitment and retention efforts. One key aspect is that we have excellent managers that are passionate about working here and it bleeds down to their teams by organically sharing and sustaining the same values. We’re in the process of formalizing that to be more defined and built into everything we do.

Independent Restaurant Chain in Toronto

As a busy business owner, keeping on top of the day’s comings and goings is often priority number one. That can leave little time to spend on one of the things that matter most: your people. Instead of trying to manage employees yourself, why not hire a human resources manager? They can dedicate their time to helping you take care of your employees, handle short-staffed issues etc. so you can focus on all of the other aspects of your business. 

4. Build a good rep from the inside out.  

We take great pride in being a part of Toronto’s rich heritage for over 90 years. It’s essential that our employees uphold our restaurant’s brand name and reputation. When we have someone come on board, they have to get a full understanding of why we do things a certain way. To maintain the level of service our customers expect, we offer full-time employees competitive salaries, full health benefits, and other perks based on how we do. We give back to our employees.

Independent Restaurant in Toronto

An important part of an effective employee retention strategy is building and maintaining a good reputation as an awesome place to work. But that doesn’t happen overnight and it takes some help to build. You have to constantly promote your business, your unique culture, and the benefits you offer employees. These days, you have to impress the potential candidate just as much as they have to impress you. 

Happy employees are not only important to the health of your work environment, they’re vital in today’s job climate. That’s why it’s more than worth your effort to keep them happy so they stay there.  

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