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How to Reduce Labour Costs in Your Takeaway Business: A Detailed Guide



Running a successful takeaway business involves many challenges, but one of the most significant is managing labour costs. Labour cost is one of the largest expenses in the restaurant/takeaway industry, and controlling it is crucial for maintaining profitability. 

In this blog, we will explore the importance of labour costs, and provide practical, easy-to-implement strategies to help you reduce labour costs in your takeaway business. If you’re ready to take control of your labour costs and improve your bottom line, keep reading!


Why Labour Costs Are Important:


Labour costs are a major component of your takeaway business expenses. These costs include wages, benefits, taxes, and other related expenses for your employees. High labour costs can significantly impact your profitability. By effectively managing labour costs, you can improve your profit margins and ensure the long-term success of your business.

Understanding labour costs and knowing how to control them can make the difference between a profitable business and one that struggles to stay afloat. Here are some key reasons why labour costs are important:

  • Profitability: Labour costs directly affect your bottom line. Lowering these costs without compromising service quality can increase your profits. 
  • Budgeting: Accurate labour cost management helps you budget more effectively, ensuring you have the resources to invest in other areas of your business.

  • Staff Efficiency: Efficient labour management can lead to better staff utilisation, improving overall productivity and service quality.


4 Simple Ways to Reduce Labour Costs at Your Takeaway:

  1. Be Pro at Scheduling

Effective scheduling is essential for controlling labour costs. Understanding your takeaway’s peak times and quieter periods allows you to schedule the right number of staff when you need them the most, and avoid unnecessary Labour costs during slower periods.

  • Analyse Crowd Patterns: Monitor your order trends to identify peak days and hours. Use this data to create a staffing schedule that matches your business needs.
  • Adjust Schedules Accordingly: Ensure you have enough staff during busy times to maintain service quality and reduce staff during slow periods to cut costs.
  • Use Scheduling Software: Invest in scheduling software that can help you create efficient schedules, taking into account employee availability and peak business times.
  1. Cross-Train Staff

Cross-training your staff can significantly reduce your reliance on specific employees and lower your labour costs. Employees who can perform multiple roles provide greater flexibility and efficiency.

  • Enhance Staff Versatility: Train your staff to handle various tasks such as serving food, cleaning, managing the waitlist, and operating POS systems.
  • Reduce Dependency: By having a versatile team, you can schedule fewer employees without compromising service quality.
  • Improve Employee Satisfaction: Cross-training can lead to greater job satisfaction and employee retention, as staff members feel more valued and competent.
  1. Employ Part-Time Help

Hiring part-time employees can be a cost-effective solution for managing labour costs. Part-time workers are usually paid on an hourly basis and do not require the same benefits as full-time employees.

  • Hourly Rates: Part-time employees typically earn less than full-time employees, reducing overall labour expenses.
  • Flexibility: Part-time workers provide flexibility in staffing, allowing you to adjust staffing levels based on demand.
  • Reduce Full-Time Burden: Offload general and unskilled tasks to part-time employees, allowing your full-time staff to focus on more important responsibilities.
  1. Invest in Automation and Equipment

Technology can significantly reduce the need for human labour in the restaurant industry. Automating various operations can lower labour costs and improve efficiency.

  • Online Ordering: Implement online ordering systems to reduce the need for phone orders and streamline the ordering process.
  • Table Reservation: Use table reservation software to manage bookings efficiently and reduce the need for front-of-house staff.
  • QR Ordering and Contactless Payments: Introduce QR codes for ordering and contactless payment systems to minimise the need for servers and cashiers.
  • Automated Equipment: Invest in kitchen equipment that automates food preparation processes, reducing the need for kitchen staff.

Additional Tips for Managing Labour Costs:


  • Monitor Overtime: Keep a close eye on overtime hours and ensure they are necessary. Excessive overtime can significantly increase labour costs.

  • Review Performance: Regularly review employee performance and address any issues that may be affecting productivity.

  • Employee Incentives: Offer incentives for employees who help improve efficiency and reduce costs. This can motivate your team to work more effectively.

  • Streamline Processes: Continuously look for ways to streamline your operations and reduce unnecessary labour.

Why Choose OrderE for your Branded Online Ordering?

Here are some compelling reasons why you should choose OrderE for your restaurant/takeaway:

  • Comprehensive Solutions: OrderE offers more than just a website. We provide a complete online ordering system with built-in marketing and customer support features. From customizable menus and seamless ordering experiences to advanced marketing tools and responsive customer support, OrderE has everything you need to elevate your restaurant/takeaway’s online presence and boost your brand.
  • Customisation Options: At OrderE, we understand that every restaurant/takeaway is unique, which is why we offer customisable solutions tailored to meet your specific needs and objectives. Whether you’re looking to showcase your menu offerings, promote special promotions, or engage with customers on social media, our platform can be customized to align with your restaurant/takeaway’s brand and offerings.
  • Marketing Expertise: In addition to our online ordering platform, OrderE offers advanced marketing tools and strategies to help you promote your restaurant/takeaway and attract new customers. From loyalty programs and discount coupons to email marketing and search engine optimization (SEO) services, we have the expertise and resources to help you maximize your restaurant/takeaway’s online visibility and drive increased traffic and revenue.
  • Responsive Customer Support: At OrderE, we prioritise customer satisfaction and support. Our dedicated team of customer support specialists is available to assist you with any technical issues or inquiries, ensuring that you receive the help and support you need when you need it. With OrderE, you can rest assured that help is just a phone call or click away.
  • Proven Track Record: With years of experience serving restaurants/takeaways of all sizes and types, OrderE has a proven track record of helping restaurants/takeaways succeed in the digital landscape. Our platform has been trusted by thousands of restaurants/takeaways worldwide to streamline their online ordering process, increase sales, and enhance their brand’s online presence.


Controlling labour costs is essential for the success of your takeaway business. You can significantly reduce your labour expenses without compromising service quality by strategically scheduling, cross-training staff, employing part-time help, and investing in automation. Implementing these strategies will help you manage your labour costs effectively, improve your profitability, and ensure the long-term success of your business. Start making these changes today, and watch your takeaway business thrive!

In conclusion, effective labour cost management is about cutting costs and optimising your workforce to enhance productivity and profitability. Use these practical tips to get a handle on your labour costs and steer your takeaway business toward a more profitable future.



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