We spoke to Travis Fish, co-founder of the trendy Bababoom kebab shop in Battersea, about what bringing in Planday has meant for their business. Bababoom specialises in mixing Middle-Eastern flavours with high quality British ingredients and is replicating it’s recipe for success in new London locations.

New kid on the block

When we opened our doors in August 2016, everything was hectic. We used Excel for scheduling and had paper contracts. Staff could only check rota schedules on a print out at work. One of the biggest problems were clashes between versions, because we used so many modes of communication – from Whatsapp, email to phone calls— it was just so messy. We quickly realised we needed a slick solution to help us save money and time.

We researched a lot of options in depth, and spend a lot of time looking at features and cost comparisons, because I did not want to end up with a big, generic system that was mediocre at everything.

Cost-effective does not mean impersonal

One of the reasons we chose Planday is because of the ease of doing business with them. Their team was just so responsive and helpful – to this day I can still call my account manager to ask questions if we need help. I appreciated this kind of approach, because it’s so important to our business that we get on really well with our suppliers long term.

For us, the key impact Planday has had is the savings per person per month. Their feature selection is world-class and better than other systems we looked at, while being very cost effective. By using Planday, we save money per person each month by having a detailed overview of everyone’s shifts.

Employee-friendly communication

Even before a new employee starts, their onboarding journey is seamless. Once I have their email address and phone number, it’s possible to send them their contract digitally right away together with the welcome pack.

There are also never any questions about salaries, because the team clocks in and out with the Punch Clock feature, so they can clearly see the correlation between how much they work and their pay, since payslips are directly connected to Planday. That makes it really simple for staff and eliminates hassle for management.

We also feel like we have our own BabaBoom social network with the Messaging feature, since we can post events and send newsletters. It makes the whole team feel a lot more professional and close-knit, since everyone can see what’s going on.

Scaling with a difference

On top of our main Battersea location, we operate a delivery kitchen in east London, and we are opening a few more restaurants next year. Having Planday in place means that we are able to grow quickly, efficiently and easily. Trading shifts across two locations is now a breeze, and I know we will able to schedule shifts across all outlets once we’ve opened without any headaches.

Tech is moving hospitality forward

I believe n tech in the restaurant industry will push us to new levels and enable us to bring about better experiences. For example, when I started working in pubs and restaurants 10 years ago, nobody was doing takeaway and there was a bigger divide between pubs and restaurants in terms of food.

Now almost every restaurant is doing some kind of delivery, and the lines between pubs and restaurants have blurred into casual dining. As the societal mindset changes and people start using new technologies, people realise they can have great experiences in hospitality on both sides of the fence.