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

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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What Motivates Your Part-time Employees?

By Henry Updegrave October 22, 2018

Many businesses rely on part-time workers as a cost-effective, flexible source of labor. But some managers complain that part-timers aren't committed enough -- without the full schedule and benefits that full-time staff get, they worry there simply isn’t enough there to motivate part-time staff to put forth their best effort.

We think that’s a cop out.

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The Future of the Gig Economy: 5 Jobs that Could Be Next

By Henry Updegrave October 15, 2018

In the last couple of years, we’ve seen more and more people participate in the gig economy, taking non-permanent, freelance jobs often facilitated over the internet. While it’s hard to pin down exact numbers, a review of several existing studies conducted by Nation1099 suggests that 11% of the U.S. workforce counts freelance jobs as their primary source of income, while an additional 25-39% have freelanced in the last year for supplementary income. Research from McKinsey suggests that many more workers want to join them and experience the independence that comes from being one’s own boss.

But when most people think of the gig economy, they think of apps like Uber, AirBnb, or TaskRabbit. Nearly all of the jobs available on these apps are one-off, transactional deals conducted between individuals. The work isn’t consistent or high-paying enough to replace a full-time job, which is why companies like Uber say more than half of its drivers work 15 or fewer hours per week.

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How to Do Payroll Manually Versus With Software

By Henry Updegrave October 10, 2018

Let’s face it. Doing payroll is nobody’s idea of fun. Whether you’re a business owner or a manager, you probably aren’t looking forward to the process of calculating wages, withholding taxes, and filling out IRS forms.

But, as is the case for many tedious but necessary business processes, technology can automate parts of the payroll process for you. How much can it take off your plate? That depends on the software you’re willing to invest in. You have three options:

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What Do Retirees Stand to Gain from the Gig Economy?

By Henry Updegrave October 4, 2018

Most people picture retirement as their Golden Years: a time when they can kick back, relax, and lead the lifestyle of their choosing. The ability to realize that dream, however, is largely dependent on one’s financial situation.

Unfortunately, that situation is bleak for many. In a recent study on retirement readiness, Northwestern Mutual found that 67% of Americans expect to outlive their retirement savings. It’s becoming increasingly clear that many will need to earn supplemental income during retirement to maintain their current lifestyle.

But financially tenuous retirees may have a savior: the gig economy. Millions of Americans are supporting themselves by taking on a steady flow of short-term jobs that allow them set their own schedule and be their own boss. You’ve likely heard of this in the context of apps like Uber and Airbnb. However more traditional jobs in retail and food service, as well as a plethora of opportunities in professional and consulting work, are increasingly being outsourced to independent workers. 

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What is Workforce Management?

By Henry Updegrave September 28, 2018

One of the most difficult parts of running a business is managing your employees, and I don’t mean in the traditional sense of motivating or coaching them (though these are difficult, crucial undertakings in their own right). I’m talking about basic logistics like getting them in the right place at the right time and making sure they get paid.

In many ways, these are bare minimums to operate as a business. But to consistently grow and thrive, you need to do more than the bare minimum -- you need to solve these problems more efficiently than the competition. That’s where workforce management comes into play. Workforce management is the set of tools and processes businesses use to deploy their employees efficiently, keep labor costs in check, and track staff performance.

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Introducing the New and Improved Nowsta Blog

By Henry Updegrave September 26, 2018

We’re excited to announce that we’ve re-launched the Nowsta blog! Every week, we’ll be bringing you day-to-day workforce management tips, labor market insights, and all the latest news on Nowsta. We also plan to roll out analytical white papers, longform guides, and free business diagnostic tools to help you be a more effective manager. 

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Helping you become a better manager.