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[New Research] Operators Want New Employees Trained and Shift-Ready One Week Faster

As essential functions in multi-unit restaurants, training and operations are inherently intertwined and greatly influence the customer experience. Educating employees to perform job tasks correctly, efficiently, and confidently is key to maintaining quality operations and customer experiences. In the high-turnover restaurant industry, getting new employees up to speed faster is critical to retaining them longer.

In the recently released 2023 Restaurant Operations Report, operations leaders said it takes 19 days on average for a new restaurant employee to become proficient in their role, while they ideally want new employees up and running in 12 days (where “ideal” is defined as a reasonable number of days stores could aim to achieve). Operators with 251+ locations want to reduce onboarding time by 54%. Getting new employees trained up and ready faster gets them out onto the floor as soon as possible and allows them to start using what they’ve learned to have an impact on the guest experience right away. This also helps everyone get their work done faster, and completed properly, but more importantly, it makes the new employee feel like a contributing member of the team rather than a burden to coworkers.

Training and development are operators’ top priorities for driving success in other parts of the business. Operations leaders expressed that improvements in training and development play a big role in driving success in other parts of the business. Operators ranked employee learning/development/retention as the top driver of operational excellence impacting the success of stores. The top strategies for reducing labor costs were training, incentives, and retention— all of which reinforce how critical it is to get training and onboarding right across stores.

Online learning programs can help get new employees and new stores onboarded faster. Blended training programs are a great way to onboard staff so they can be shift-ready faster and feel like a valued part of the team right away. With on-demand programs, team members receive consistent training across all locations, and managers gain back valuable time, leading to better customer service and brand experiences for guests. You are also investing in talent development by preparing your team for leadership roles and improving your internal candidate pool for promotion from within. Ultimately, this produces higher employee satisfaction and lessens turnover—two surefire growth factors— especially for the 96% of operators planning on unit expansion, as revealed in the research report. 

Download your free copy of the 2023 Restaurant Operations Report to dig into the full survey results. A deeper dive into the findings will also be shared in a live webinar with EnsembleIQ on Wednesday, October 25th at 11 AM ET. Register now to secure your spot, and join us live to ask questions, gain additional insight, and explore additional findings during this interactive session. 

By downloading the report and attending the webinar, you'll have access to a wealth of information that can help better position your operation for success in 2024 and beyond.