The Nowsta Blog

Management tips and labor market insights to help you run your business

Henry Updegrave

Henry Updegrave
Henry heads up marketing at Nowsta: the easiest way to schedule, manage, and pay hourly staff.

Recent Posts

25 Small Business Tax Deductions You Need to Know About

By Henry Updegrave February 18, 2019

Running a small business is no easy endeavor — especially during tax season. In addition to dealing with complicated forms and financial calculations, many small businesses end up paying too much in taxes because they take all of the deductions available to them.

We want to help you keep your tax bill as low as possible in 2019. Below, we’re going to give you the rundown on 25 of the most common small business tax deductions you could be eligible for as a sole proprietor, LLC, or partnership business. Please note that this post is for educational purposes. You should speak to a professional tax advisor to confirm which deductions you’re eligible to claim and learn how.  

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New York’s Spread of Hours Law Explained

By Henry Updegrave February 11, 2019

Building a work schedule for your team requires a full understanding of your state’s labor laws, which aren’t always intuitive. New York’s Spread of Hours law is a prime example. While most labor laws focus only on the hours an employee is clocked in for, the Spread of Hours law takes the whole day into account. The law applies only to businesses in the service industry, and says that if the beginning and end of an employee’s workday are more than ten hours apart — including breaks or off-duty hours — you’re required to pay that employee one extra hour’s worth of pay at minimum wage, on top of their total wages for the day.

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Employee Earnings Record: What It Is and How to Use It

By Henry Updegrave February 7, 2019

There’s lots of data to keep track of for all your employees. But virtually none is more important than up-to-date payroll information.

You need to have a record of how many hours your employees have worked, their gross salary, tax withholdings, and all other deductions. Not only will this make it easier for you to pay your taxes and do payroll reconciliation, but it also allows employees to better understand their finances.

You track this information for each member of your team in an employee earnings record. This article will explain to you what an employee earnings record is, what information it needs to contain, and how you’ll use it.

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Employee Retention Ideas: 5 Difference Makers For Your Staff

By Henry Updegrave February 5, 2019

Employee retention is one of the most important measures of success for any business owner or manager, but also one of the most difficult to achieve. Why is it such a big deal? Research shows that it costs nearly 20% of an hourly employee’s total yearly salary to replace them when they leave, which works out to roughly $4,000 for someone making $10 an hour. Those costs can add up quickly, and get even higher in a tight labor market.

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Overstaffed: Does Scheduling More Staff Always Mean Better Results?

By Henry Updegrave January 15, 2019

Managers have to strike a difficult balance when building the work schedule. You need to make sure you have enough staff on duty to meet customer demand, but not so many that you overshoot your labor budget or eat into margins. But generally speaking, most would assume that the more employees you have scheduled for a shift, the better the team will perform, since the workload can be spread out across a larger group.

But the research suggests that isn’t always true.

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What is a Payroll Register?

By Henry Updegrave December 31, 2018

Running payroll accurately is table stakes for any business, but it’s also more difficult than new managers and business owners may realize. Between employees’ gross pay, net pay, and the various deductions that make up the difference, there’s a lot of information to keep track of. That’s where your payroll register comes in.

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Introducing Weekly View: Our New Scheduling Option for Non-Event Shifts

By Henry Updegrave December 4, 2018

At Nowsta, events are our bread and butter. Our scheduling tools are built to help you manage the constant week-to-week variation in shifts, roles, and venue locations that all event-based businesses are familiar with.

But just because you’re in the events industry doesn’t mean that every single shift you schedule is tied to an event. Caterers, for instance, often have staff in their kitchens, warehouses, and cafes who work roughly the same hours each week regardless of how many events are on the schedule. We want to help our customers manage those staff from the Nowsta platform as easily as they do their event staff. That’s why today, we’re excited to announce our newest scheduling tool: Weekly View.

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How Paper Timesheets and Punch Cards Cost Your Small Business

By Henry Updegrave November 15, 2018

Every business owner and manager knows that manually tracking employees’ hours isn’t fun. If you use paper timesheets, you have to pester staff to sign in and out, decipher messy handwriting, and somehow get the data to your payroll provider. Physical timeclocks mitigate some of those issues, but you’re still stuck poring over a stack of paper time cards at the end of each pay period.

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Payroll Reconciliation: How to Do It in 6 Easy Steps

By Henry Updegrave November 8, 2018

Payroll reconciliation is the key to maintaining accurate records of employee wages, withholdings, and other key pieces of tax information. Like many finance-related tasks, it’s a tedious yet crucial part of running a small business. In this post, we’re going to lessen the burden for you by breaking the process down into six simple steps.

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Why Your Business Needs an SOP for Everything

By Henry Updegrave November 7, 2018

Imagine you manage a restaurant and a new employee starts. You begin their first day by asking them to clean up all the cutting boards and cooking utensils in the kitchen. That may sound like a simple task, but as any food services professional will tell you, there’s a specific process to cleaning any food contact surfaces. By sending your new employee in blind, you’re risking your customers’ health, and you could fail your next health inspection. Worst of all, you could’ve eliminated those risks if you’d taken the time to write a Standard Operating Procedure (SOP).

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