The Nowsta Blog

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

The Caterer's Guide to Interviewing Part-time Event Staff

By Roy Porter November 26, 2018

This is Part Two of a five-part series for caterers on hiring and managing part-time event staff. You can read the others here: 

As a caterer, you always need to be hiring more part-time event staff. These are high turnover positions, and seasonality means your needs are always changing -- the last thing you want is to find yourself scrambling for more staff at the last minute.

But at the same time, you can’t just hire anyone who walks through the door to be your next server, bartender, or hostess. These people interact directly with guests, which means they arguably have the biggest overall impact on client experience. You need to know you can trust them with that responsibility. That’s where the interview process comes in.

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Underemployed: How to Manage Part-time Staff Who Need More Hours

By Josh Burnett November 23, 2018

Every employee needs something a little different to do their best work. That was our thesis when we broke part-time employees down into five categories and provided management tips for each, based on Federal Reserve survey data on why people say they work part-time as opposed to full-time. Over a series of posts, we’re going to take a deeper dive into each category and explore how managers can better manage, motivate, and accommodate each type of part-time employee.

First up: Part-time-staff who need more hours, also known as the visibly underemployed.

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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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How to Build a Shift Swap Policy that Works for Everyone

By Josh Burnett November 13, 2018

Scheduling hourly staff is a difficult balancing act for managers. On the one hand, you have to preserve margins by keeping the schedule lean and assigning only as many people as you need to meet customer demand. That means you sometimes need the flexibility to change the schedule in the days leading up to a shift. On the other hand, employees need flexibility too. Last minute scheduling changes make it harder for them to meet family obligations, work a second job, make it to class, or manage other aspects of their daily lives. But a reasonable shift swap policy can enable managers to meet the needs of both their business and their employees.

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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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Managing Millennials: 3 Solutions to Your Biggest Complaints

By Josh Burnett November 1, 2018

Everyone has heard the stereotypes about millennials. They’re lazy, entitled, addicted to their phones -- the list goes on and on. But as a business owner or manager, the first thing you need to understand about millennials is that they’re here to stay. They became a majority of the workforce in 2015, and more are joining every year. Chances are that millennials already make up a significant portion of your staff.

So, whether you like it or not, you’re going to have to learn how to work with them. But don’t worry, we’re here to help. In this post, we’re going to offer some solutions to some of the common issues employers have when it comes to managing millennials. And who knows? We may even find a few silver linings to some of their supposedly negatively traits.

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15 Team Building Games Your Employees Will Actually Like

By Stephanie Knapp October 30, 2018

If you’ve ever led or participated in a team building game, then you know that they can often cause eye rolls. It’s not that employees don’t want to have fun and become closer to their coworkers. It’s more likely that they’ve encountered team building games that have been uncomfortable, boring, or just plain corny.

You’ve probably experienced this yourself, which may leave you wondering why you’d even bother with team building games in the first place. Here's why: A staggering 68% of U.S. employees are disengaged at work, and just over half are looking for a new job. So, if your business resembles the rest of the workforce, that means more than two-thirds of your employees simply don't care enough to give their best effort. Does that sound like a recipe for success? Of course not. The data backs it up too, as a study by IBM’s Kenexa found that companies in the top quartile of employee engagement have double the net income as companies in the bottom quartile.

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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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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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Helping you become a better manager.