Controlling Labor Costs

Amy Fields
Friday, March 10, 2017 - 1:30pm - 2:45pm
Salon C

Food co-ops of all sizes are experiencing a new level of competition, coming from all directions – other natural foods retailers, conventional grocery stores, superstores and warehouse clubs, and Amazon and other online shopping options. With razor thin profit margins in grocery retail, it is critical to manage labor -- by far the co-op’s largest controllable expense -- effectively and efficiency. We’ll talk about the challenges in managing labor for a start-up, whose job it is to control labor, how to budget for labor and make adjustments based on actual performance, if/where owner labor comes into play, and how to translate a labor budget into people, skills and scheduling. As Garth Ennis writes in The Boys, Volume 1: The Name of the Game, “Remember the seven Ps. Seven what? Proper preparation and planning . . .

As Benjamin Franklin so succinctly noted “By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.”