Scheduling apps have been used in restaurants for years now to replace the inconvenient paper logbook. They can encourage staff communication, and at restaurants like the Assembly in Eagle, co-owner Jaimie Mackey has found, “Having things documented has helped prevent miscommunication or errors.” Differences between apps like Schedulefly, ShiftNote, and 7shifts lie in the level of accessibility and the number of features they offer. Here’s the lay of the land.
Mom-and-pops with a single location will be best served by Schedulefly not only for ease of use, but also because they share a similar small-business perspective. “Restaurants may outgrow [our] services if they start adding many locations,” says co-founder Wil Brawley. The gist: The app focuses on scheduling, and scheduling only.
- Current clients include: The Pullman in Glenwood Springs and Montanya Distillers in Crested Butte
- POS integration: No
- It’ll cost ya: $30 a month for 19 employees or fewer (prices go up in $10 increments depending on the size of your staff).
ShiftNote aims to “bring systems and procedures together in a simplified manner,” says CEO and co-founder Matt Thompson. The app offers advanced features but, in an effort to ensure ease of use for staff, abstains from POS integration. ShiftNote offers two products: the communication tool, which acts as a manager logbook, and the more comprehensive scheduling tool, which adds the ability to create and manage employee schedules.
- Current clients include: Root Down in Denver and Steamworks Brewing Company in Durango
- POS integration: No
- It’ll cost ya: $34.95 a month for the communication tool or $64 a month for the scheduling tool.
7shifts is ideal for those who want scheduling and communication capabilities—and POS integration, high-level analytics, and restaurant optimization features. The Assembly uses the app to schedule employees, manage time-off requests, and communicate weekly events. “Employees can see updates in real time instead of waiting for another email,” says Mackey.
- Current clients include: Elk Ave Prime in Crested Butte and Simmer in Fort Collins
- POS integration: Yes
- It’ll cost ya: There’s a free version, but the app provides more features with paid versions starting at $17.99 a month.
Talk to us! Email your experiences (and thoughts, opinions, and questions—anything, really) to firstname.lastname@example.org.