Compeat Partners with Harri to Expand Workforce Management Tools for Hospitality Brands

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Today we announced our partnership with Compeat, the leading provider of integrated restaurant accounting, back office, workforce, and intelligence management software, to provide mutual clients a more integrated and seamless experience. 

This partnership will enable operators to manage the end-to-end aspects of hiring, onboarding, inventory, business intelligence, accounting and other mission critical areas of the business.  This best-in-class approach, to connect the multiple dimensions of operational activities, will enhance the customer experience and drive positive business outcomes for shared clients. 

“In an industry plagued with unmanageable turnover rates, hospitality brands need to invest in new ways to attract talent and retain it for the long-term,” said Joe Miliziano, COO  Harri. “We look forward to partnering with Compeat with our suite of hiring technology to help mutual clients find and retain the best talent, allowing them to grow their businesses through the most important asset for any restaurant or hospitality brand, its people.”

“Partnering with Harri makes perfect sense because both Harri and Compeat focus on easing the hospitality industry’s biggest pain points,” states Kristi Turner, CMO of Compeat. “Coupling Harri’s ability to attract the best talent with Compeat’s innovative accounting, back office, workforce and business intelligence solutions will revolutionize the way that restaurants operate.”

FSTEC - Our biggest takeaways

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#TeamHarri spent last week in the Lone Star State at the FSTEC Convention. After meeting with hundreds of IT professionals, these were the thought-provoking highlights they came back to Harri HQ with: 


Unit-level adoption of employee facing technology continues to be an up-hill battle. Finding a technology platform that’s built from the ground up, mobile friendly, highly intuitive, and meet the expectations of a multi-generational workforce is a rare find. The Workforce OS by Harri was built with this entirely in mind. Our platform includes TeamHub, a custom-built system using facial recognition technology, focused on improving the clock-in/clock-out experience for employees and managers.

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Multi-Unit Control and Visibility. Restaurant operators need to look at different types of data when studying their holistic labor performance. Traditional, periodic data sets are not sufficient forms of information to examine critical labor KPIs. Operators need tools than can empower them to compare data and performance across regions and brands. With the introduction of the Harri Live, operators can grant frontline managers the ability to access live sales and labor data, full scheduling management, employee requests, communications, live compliance alerts and team data in one place, on the go. The application allows for cross-location employee data, which is useful to have up to date information at the unit level.

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Highly Complex Risks. With labor-related legislation, keeping the workforce compliant has never been more challenging. Recent controversies, such as the lawsuit against Chipotle in NYC alleging Fair Workweek violations and McDonald’s joint employer settlement, have made it imperative for operators to invest in tools that ensure compliance and prevent fees and potential lawsuits. Our new rules engine features a customized approach to Fair Workweek regulations that ensures compliance across jurisdictions and a nimble approach to predictive scheduling.

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Employee engagement as a function of retention. The topic of ‘Employee engagement’ has developed into one of this years biggest headlines. Many have positioned training and development as the most critical contributor to drive retention. The sobering reality is that employee retention is a multi dimensional issue that requires a multidimensional solution. One of the most commonly missed opportunities to engage and communicate with employees is the point of clock in. With the creation of TeamHub, a dedicated facial recognition time and attendance application, managers can push alerts, and gather surveys. The future of employee retention is rooted in delivering the right forms of technology, communications and engagement in the right place and at the right time.

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Lessons from Chipotle: How to Comply with NYC Fair Workweek Law

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Fair Workweek regulations are coming into force across the nation. These ‘predictive scheduling’ laws aim to promote flexibility for shift workers and protect against unfair scheduling practices.

The rules are complex and fines for violations are heavy.

Chipotle recently came under fire in NYC for allegedly violating Fair Workweek laws, including providing schedule estimates and premium pay for employees working “clopenings”.  A lawsuit from the CIty of New York alleges that complaints were received from more than 30 employees at five Brooklyn Chipotle locations. The department is seeking at least $1 million in restitution for workers plus civil penalties and future compliance with the requirements of the law.

For fast-food/casual operators in New York this means, among other headaches, shifts must be planned two weeks in advance and records must be immaculate to avoid costly fines.

And the fact these regulations vary significantly state-by-state makes it all the more difficult for restaurant groups who operate across multiple cities.

Many operators have put dedicated finance teams in place to identify violations and deal with penalties to ensure compliance. But this approach deals with the symptoms of the problem rather than the cause. 

What is needed is a holistic solution that tackles the root cause while also mitigating risks throughout the business, enabling all departments to consistently and proactively work together. 

Giving managers the power to use predictive scheduling effectively, minimizes violations and pushes any violation data straight to payroll to be dealt with in accordance with the law.

The result is greater efficiency and less stress for managers, more flexibility and protection for employees, and better results for the business – not only in terms of happy workers but in costs saved and embarrassment avoided.

Let’s take a look at the rules and penalties for NYC and then how Harri’s system deals with the many challenges they pose to fast food operators in the city.

Regulations and Penalties for New York

Good Faith Estimate

On or before their first day, employees must be sent:

  • A written schedule for the next two weeks, including hours, dates, and shift start and finish times, both for regular and on-call workers.

  • Written Good Faith Estimates giving details of the days, times, hours, and locations they can expect during their employment.

This must be updated when a worker’s actual hours differ from the estimate after three consecutive weeks or three weeks in a six-week period.

Failure to provide or follow Good Faith Estimate: $200

Right to Rest

Employers cannot schedule employees to work two shifts over two days when the first shift ends the day (ie. it is a closing shift) and when there are less than 11 hours between shifts (known as a “clopening” – closing and opening – shift), unless workers consent in writing and are paid a $100 premium to work the shift.

Violation of minimum time between shifts (“clopenings”): $500 plus any unpaid $100 premium

Advanced Notice on Scheduling

Employees must be given the schedule 14 days in advance. For any changes, they must be contacted within 24 hours or as soon as a change occurs.

  • Workers may decline to work an added shift without providing written confirmation.

  • Employers do not have to get the worker’s written consent if the work time is reduced or other changes are made.

  • Employers must pay compensation for changes after the notice period and need written consent if a change is within the 14 days.

  • Employers only need to pay a premium if changes to a shift add up to more than 15 minutes per shift. However, the worker must still consent in writing to any additional time worked.

Failure to provide work schedules in accordance with the law: $200

Failure to provide requested schedules: $200

Penalties for changes to the date or time of a work shift 

  • No change in the number of hours:

    • Less than 14 days’ notice: $10 per change

    • Less than 7 days’ notice: $15 per change

    • Less than 24 hours’ notice: $15 per change

  •  Additional hours

    • Less than 14 days’ notice: $10 per change

    • Less than 7 days’ notice: $15 per change

    • Less than 24 hours’ notice: $15 per change

  •  Subtracted hours

    • Less than 14 days’ notice: $20 per change

    • Less than 7 days’ notice: $45 per change

    • Less than 24 hours’ notice: $75 per change

Access to Hours for Existing Employees

  • Employers must advertise shifts for existing employees before hiring new employees. 

  • Employees have a deadline to accept them before the employer is able to hire new employees.

Violation of access to hours: $300

Exceptions

Premium pay is not required when:

  • The employer closes the restaurant due to: threats to worker safety or employer property, public utility failure, shutdown of public transportation, fire, flood, other natural disaster, or government-declared state of emergency.

  • The employee requests a schedule change to a specific shift.

  • The employee trades shifts with another employee.

The employer must pay overtime for a changed shift.

Retaliation 

Employers cannot punish, penalize or retaliate against an employee in any way that might stop or deter them from exercising their rights under the law. 

The penalties for retaliation:

  • The employer must erase the disciplinary record and reinstate the employee.

  • Back pay: $500 plus any other money or relief to remedy harm to the affected employee.

The penalties for termination as a form of retaliation:

  • The employer must erase the disciplinary record and reinstate the employee. 

  • Back pay: $2,500 plus any other money or damages to remedy harm to the affected employee.

Harri’s Intelligent Scheduling 

Harri’s intelligent scheduling system automatically keeps operators up-to-date with regulations, even across multiple jurisdictions. It helps you not only to actively comply with regulations, but also to use predictive scheduling to improve your business.

Here’s a rundown of the main features.

Good Faith Scheduling Support

The system includes the following features to make employees aware of the Good Faith Schedule during onboarding:

  • The automatically generated Good Faith Estimate document provides new hires with a clear schedule in accordance with the local laws.

  • This is seamlessly integrated into the onboarding process for review and e-signature by the new hire. 

Direct Shift Swaps

Harri’s Hot Fill system allows employees to exchange shifts directly without employer involvement. The peer-to-peer shift exchange does not violate the above rules on shift swaps based on pay rate and overtime thereby avoiding late-change penalties.

Hot Fill - “Uber for your employees”

Here’s how it works:

  1. An employee is unable to attend work and they release the shift 

  2. Other employees have indicated they wish to work on that day if a shift becomes available (note, they are not “on-call”)

  3. The system alerts these employees via SMS and push notification 

  4. The first employee to accept gets the shift 

  5. The manager on duty is notified of the employee’s ETA and distance from work

This system offers more flexibility for employees and makes it far easier for managers to oversee a shift swap, all while avoiding costly late-change penalties.

Calculation of Right to Rest Compensation Payment

The Right to Rest regulation ensures employees adequate rest between shifts. Harri helps managers to comply by alerting them if this rule is violated when the schedule is created, or any time after it is created, so they can proactively make changes to the schedule.

Manager Alert for Penalties Related to Schedule Changes 

Managers have the ability to define compensation rules for changes after the advance notice period. Shift change premium pay is indicated on the schedule itself and included in the total wage cost calculations.

This means managers are fully aware of the cost impact of schedule changes before they put them in place so they are able to plan and make strategic decisions accordingly. It also makes it easy for the finance department to calculate the costs and pay the right amount to the employee.

Predictive Scheduling Premium Reporting

This feature provides managers with reports indicating, in detail, all the premium payments resulting from schedule changes. These can then be passed seamlessly to the finance department where they can be processed.

They can also be analyzed and scrutinized by management so that key decisions can be made on the company-wide scheduling policy to avoid future fines.

Make Sure Your Business is Protected

The best way to ensure compliance, at scale and across states and cities, is to use a holistic system designed for the purpose.

Harri’s smart scheduling tools simplify every stage of the process, dealing with the cause of the problem in order to minimize violations and streamline communication between departments, managers, and employees.

To see how you can use the system to protect your business and lead a happy, better-rested team, get started with Harri’s smart scheduling tools.

It’s Time to Rethink Your POS and Time Clock Integration

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The integration of time tracking features into the point of sale (POS) system was a leap forward for restaurants, replacing the paper forms and excel spreadsheets that came before.

But times have changed, and so have operational challenges. With new innovations come new opportunities to engage employees with better communications while they clock in and clock out, while also making this critical process smarter, more secure and easier to manage.

POS systems are primarily designed to efficiently process sales and keep track of inventory etc. They don’t make the most of the clock in/out process.

  • They lack the security needed to prevent team members from buddy punching. 

  • They lack the precise tracking and integration with schedules to ensure shifts are easily and accurately logged. 

  • They’re not designed with restaurant managers in mind, which makes core backend tasks, like processing payroll, far more of a headache than they need to be. 

The time has come to stop making the POS more than it should be.

Clocking in and out forms a critical part of an employee’s day. The process deserves its own system, separate from the POS.

One which identifies team members by face recognition and welcomes with details of the day’s special. Where shifts are accurately logged on an integrated system leaving managers free to look after staff and manage the day-to-day running of the floor. 

That vision of the future is here.

Introducing TeamHub

TeamHub is a custom-built system focused on improving the clock-in/clock-out experience for employees and managers. It turns the traditionally mundane routine into something positive, solving a host of common problems along the way. Let’s take a look at the three key areas where it provides tangible benefits.

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Benefits of TeamHub vs. Regular POS

Accurate shift and break logging

Keeping tabs on clocking in and out and break management has long been a bugbear of busy GMs. POS systems are not specifically designed for these tasks and therefore fall short.

Employees tend to give themselves an extra few minutes here and there, and this can add up significantly over time. Or they’ll have a buddy clock them in so they can steal a few more minutes in bed.

TeamHub identifies employees using face recognition technology, or a unique pin, and logs breaks to the second. The time and attendee tracking matches your schedule to what’s really happening, allowing managers to have an accurate view of what’s going on. 

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All the shift timing data is logged and securely stored on your existing systems so you have access to it when it’s needed most. With the frequent changes to the law – like California’s new strict rest break laws – coming in all the time, it’s vital to have well-maintained records in case of an audit. TeamHub integrates seamless wage and hour-logging into the system as a priority, improving the attendance records of employees and compliance with labor laws.

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Improve company culture

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In large teams where staff come and go at different times, it’s not always possible to gather the whole team together to motivate staff and relay information.

Every employee must log in and out every day and these touchpoints are the ideal times to foster a sense of community and convey information critical to the shift. But traditional POS systems miss these opportunities to engage with individuals.

TeamHub streamlines communications between floor staff and management by taking advantage of these critical touchpoints. The system welcomes employees by name, and proceeds to engage them with custom messages. For example, telling them a menu item is 86ed or the details of a new daily special. 

By checking the box, employees acknowledge they have read the notice, which helps the manager hold them accountable to its content.

Managers can choose who (ie. FOH or BOH/only supervisors) sees which notices to ensure they are relevant and can set them to appear during specific date ranges to make sure they are timely and up-to-date. The system also allows employees to easily adjust their time card if they need to make a change. This must then be authorized by the manager.

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Managers can elicit feedback from employees via a form. This allows them to rate their shifts for a given period and provide details if required. Giving staff a voice assures them their insight is valued and also provides critical information to managers to improve operations and morale.

More efficient management 

POS systems tend to be designed to make the lives of floor staff easier and they offer a great user experience in this regard. But they’re not optimized to provide a good UX for managers, which can make performing simple tasks, like managing timesheets, time-clocking and processing payroll, far more painful than it need be.

TeamHub is designed specifically to provide a seamless, integrated, intuitive experience for managers and employees. Moving this functionality from the POS onto a specialized system frees managers up to do what they do best: engaging with customers, leading the team from the front, and ensuring service runs smoothly.

Calculating payroll becomes a simple process of reviewing the pay data for the period and amending any custom columns. Once complete, the period can be closed and exported ready to be uploaded to the relevant payroll provider.

TeamHub’s app also provides the flexibility to manage on the go. Managers can download and install TeamHub from the app store and use it from their mobile or from a mounted iPad back of house. 

Rather than having to keep a close eye on staff as they clock in and deal with issues manually, the app allows managers to authorize certain employee actions remotely such as:

  • Changing their photo

  • Early/late clock in/out

  • Unscheduled breaks

It’s not hard to see how giving managers more flexibility and smart tools to manage on the go will improve efficiency and allow them more time to motivate their teams. Better management and happier employees will affect performance within the restaurant as a whole, ultimately improving your bottom line.

Choose a purpose-built solution

Based on detailed surveys and feedback from major industry players, Harri developed TeamHub as a specialist tool to improve the shift time management process in multiple aspects.

Although, it may seem like adding another system is overcomplicating the process, in fact, the added functionality makes managers’ lives easier and improves company culture.

Overall, the ability to easily and accurately track your employees' daily activity and associated labor costs while engaging them in the clock-in or clock-out process fosters a more transparent and collaborative work environment.

A smart, well-integrated system is better for managers and floor staff, and for the business as a whole. With improvements in staff turnover, well-being, attendance, efficiency, and legal compliance, the question is: can you afford not to be implementing the latest technology?

To make this vision of the future a reality for your business, book a demo today.

The Rise of Mobile-Powered Talent in Hospitality

Smartphones and tablets are more than just a convenience in our industry today. They can help make money, save money, streamline operations and even attract the right talent.

By the end of this year, more than 2.7 billion people worldwide will be using smartphones. Although mobile use can be a distraction, when it’s applied correctly to business operations, it improves productivity by as much as 60 percent.

Not only do smartphones ensure your employees are more connected and informed, but they can also have a huge impact on your business performance. If used correctly, they can help offset some of the challenges restaurants and hotels face today, in light of wage increases.

Why Mobile Matters

Imagining a world without smartphones is close-to-impossible. The first devices, introduced in 1992 were smarter than their predecessors but were still limited in functionality.

Fast-forward 25+ years…

Today’s restaurant, hotel, or other hospitality operator uses mobile in many ways.

  1. Marketing: In the food and beverage industries, more than 80 percent of overall consumer traffic results from consumers searching locally on their mobile devices. In fact, restaurants are the most-searched mobile category. Diners and travelers utilize social media to share their experiences, reviews, and photos.

  2. Streamlining POS: The proliferation of tablet-based ordering is evident. Seeing a server with paper is rare these days. Sustainability benefits aside, the integration of mobile ordering and a POS systems speeds service and improves accuracy. But from a business standpoint, it also gives operators real-time data; consumer preferences, traffic patterns, and more.

  3. Talent Management and Operational Excellence. People are at the core of excellent service experience and they can make or break your hospitality business on many levels. Mobile systems -- used for hiring, scheduling, communication, analysis, and much more are ultimately the critical lifeline between your employees and your bottom line. Seemingly counter-intuitive, technology enables operators to master the people aspects of running a restaurant or hotel.

Business Management Through Mobile

By integrating your mobile-enabled scheduling system with your POS system, you’ll have a clear and up-to-the-minute picture of what positions you need to fill, at what times of day, and (in the case of multi-location brands), at which locations. 

Understanding your data is the silver bullet that enables you to manage staffing in the face of wage increases and talent shortages. 

All this information being available in one place, on the go, is a game changer for managers in the hospitality industry who need to be on the move the majority of their shifts. Using Harri’s newest application, Harri Live, frontline managers are granted with the ability to access live sales and labor data, full scheduling management, employee requests, communications, live compliance alerts and team data in one place, on the go.

Mobile is the Ultimate Key to Building the Right Team

The war for talent is raging in both the restaurant and hotel industries. Although 82 million hourly workers exist in the U.S., finding the right skill set in a specific place at a particular time of year presents an ongoing challenge to operators. Ebbs and flows in traffic make holding on to top performers challenging. Understaffing creates service issues but overstaffing creates financial issues.

The candidate pool for the hospitality industry is mostly mobile. As such, mobile recruiting tools give operators the upper hand in landing quality talent. Harri’s Job Seeker App provides candidates with the ability to upload a job seeker profile, browse jobs, and schedule interviews, all through the palm of their hands. The Harri App simplifies the job search by allowing candidates to monitor shortlisted job posts, applied for jobs, and scheduled interviews, all in the same platform. 

Finding and Hiring

Mobile enables operators to pinpoint, browse, interview, and ultimately hire those employees who will be the best fit. Employees have access -- via their phones -- to positions that work best for them. Mobile also enables you to screen, track, interview, and ultimately offer jobs to candidates from wherever you are. Having that access and efficiency at one's fingertips can be a true game-changer for busy hospitality managers. Just as online dating transformed the relationship world, mobile hiring will be the primary way qualified candidates look to “match” with the right employers.

The Harri Hire app allows hiring managers to post jobs, screen candidates, conduct interviews, and communicate with candidates all from the convenience of their mobile device. The application allows managers to syndicate posts to other job distributors and create links to share via email or text. Adding these mobile capabilities to the job search increases the talent pool exponentially.

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Training

Classroom (and breakroom) education is becoming history. A third of all education now involves online or distance learning. Although live hands-on training will always be an essential aspect of the hospitality industry, onboarding and engaging employees is more effective when done on the learner’s terms -- when most convenient for him or her. A smart Learning Management System can also match the type of training to employment stage. Important modules like health and safety and sexual harassment prevention education can be easily standardized and deployed across an entire chain or group of locations and operators can monitor and coach along the way -- from anywhere.

Scheduling

The ability to set a schedule, shift-swap, and scale up or down -- from wherever people are -- is critical to employee satisfaction and operator control. A recent study revealed that a whopping 87 percent of workers value having control over their schedules.

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Cloud-based mobile scheduling apps have become something of a commodity. When you’re choosing a system, you need to pick the one that works for both you AND your employees.

As compliance becomes more important to today’s operators, choosing a system that acts as a “gatekeeper and sherpa” can save headaches and legal/financial woes in the long-run. Functions like facial recognition, fair work week considerations, overtime infringement, and much more add an extra layer of security for operators.

A truly smart scheduling system (like the one Harri recently launched)  combines seamless demand forecasting, activity-based staffing systems, and streamlined demand forecasting. An optimized sales forecast and schedule for a 50-employee full-service operation can be created and published in minutes. 

The ability to share schedules and company updates nimbly is available to employees and managers using the TeamLive app by Harri. In addition to having a platform to share live company updates with employees, managers are also able to participate in a team chat, fostering effective labor operations. 

Communications

Studies show that when employees are engaged, profitability increases more than 20 percent. In the hectic hospitality world, ensuring that engagement during the workday is challenging.

Mobile enables individuals and teams to better share policies and concerns and to celebrate successes -- 24/7. Direct SMS messages, team communications, dialogues between people who perform the same function, and even brand newsletters are all possible with the right mobile functionality.

Harri Live is the most powerful mobile application on the market granting frontline managers the ability to drive communications to employees in multiple channels, even at the point of clock in with TeamHub by Harri, our biometrically controlled time clock.

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Ultimately, Mobile Integration Can Control Your Profitability

We’ve addressed specific functionalities that mobile can deliver, but what ties it all together -- and leads to success -- is the integration of all of these mobile benefits. 

All too often, vendors will sell a mobile solution that addresses one aspect of the talent loop (e.g., hiring or scheduling), but having an end-to-end and fully integrated system will save you time -- and make you money -- in the long-run.

Having all your key data in one accessible place will enable you to analyze your business and make immediate and meaningful people-related decisions, even when traveling.

Your profitability, employee satisfaction, compliance, analytics, and the future of your brand are all (literally) now in the palm of your hand.

We’re committed to helping our client partners with best-in-class solutions that solve for labor-related challenges -- and helping YOU realize that 60 percent increase in productivity...now and into the future.