8-Hour Shifts: Pros, Cons, and Opportunities for Your Business

Aug 13, 2021 9:23:31 AM / by Larry Struckman

Operating a nearly non-stop business may be undertaking. The demanding excellent leadership, foresight, and planning from management, as well as commitment, dedication, and flexibility from staff members all come into play here.

Making sure that your staff is healthy, happy, and productive within this type of environment while also dealing with complex financial issues is associate with running such a business. The most complicated part is managing the shift schedule of the around-the-clock workforce.

The solution? Implement an 8-hour shift schedule with rotating work shifts.

A rotating 8-hour schedule has multiple benefits for the restaurant and hospitality businesses. While many industry veterans understand how it works, others are new to the idea. This post will dive into how 8-hour schedules work: including the pros, cons, and how to implement this 8-hour shift schedule. Let’s dive in!

What Are Rotating 8-hour Shift Schedules?

8-hour shifts provide 24/7 coverage for your business by maximizing the number of consecutive days employees have off, while still maintaining that 40-hour workweek. There are multiple types of 8-hour schedules you can implement at your place of business: including 8-hour days, 8-hour swings, and 8-hour night shifts. It’s really about magnifying your schedule for efficiency for your business and your employees.

Pros of 8-Hour Schedules

There are many advantages of 8-hour shift schedules, for both the employee and you the employer or shift manager. 

    • Employees receive two consecutive days off and one weekend every seven weeks.
    • Employees earn at least two days off after working a week.
    • Employees typically may have three days off after working seven consecutive nights.
    1. It’s more equitable to everyone scheduled:
    2. Employees know what they are working on because it only changes each week. 
    3. Better work-life balance.
    1. You are able to run a 24-hour operation.
    2. You can get around-the-clock coverage between as little as four employees. This can be a huge benefit for a small operation.
    3. It can be easier to create schedules.
    4. Scheduling fewer employees may help in reducing extra costs with insurance and healthcare fees. 
    5. There is a likelihood of a reduction in staff accidents or errors due to the amount of rest time in between shifts.
    6. Your staff will gain better attention spans, reaction times, motor skills, fewer memory lapses, and less irrational decision-making all due to less overwork and fatigue from only working 8-hour shifts rather than 12. This results in a better customer experience.
    7. Simplified scheduling. More shift switches mean operational slowdowns, resulting in less efficiency in dealing with more staff.
    8. Fewer missed alerts and communication breakdowns will happen between excessive shift changes.
    9. You can set performance expectations for an 8-hour shift, such as sales, parts per min, etc.  Whatever is tracked as your KPIs has to be taken into consideration for your performance ratio.
    10. Allows you to plan more proactively when you hold team meetings and helps with the rollout of new protocols and agendas.
  • Considerations
  • It’s always good to evaluate both sides, so here are some of the potential negative impacts of 8-hour schedules:
    1. It requires up-front planning, but it pays off in the long run.
    2. It is not conducive to employees who like working longer hours, but fewer days.
    3. For optimal efficiency, rotating 8-hour shifts requires the right software in place.

How to Keep Track of Schedules

We’re here to save the day. ShiftForce’s state-of-the-art technology allows you to customize your operation’s scheduling to accommodate 8-hour shift schedule blocks or any shift-scheduling model that works best for your business.

Our cloud-based employee scheduling software is a workforce management tool that makes creating schedules for any size business simple. Set and forget your scheduling process, saving you energy, time, and money. In fact, you can create a set of schedules and duplicate them as many times as you want, keeping important shift information and employee specifications all in one place.

Then you can use our Online Manager’s Logbook to log all your shift notes electronically, so you can access them anywhere -- even on your phone! It allows you to improve communication with your staff, maintain accountability, and measure important data for future insights.


Book a ShiftForce Demo

Tags: Shift Management, Tips & Ideas

Larry Struckman

Written by Larry Struckman

Passionate about setting up systems and procedures that assure success, training, consulting, growing sales, strategic planning, creating "raving fan" customer service and just about anything related to food service. 25+ years in food and sales as well as growing hundreds of concepts with different operators (I have seen them all). I enjoy cooking, computer software, Taekwondo and spending time with my family. We started ShiftNote in 2007 to help organizations like yours create a better platform for shift-to-shift communication across their organization. Our purpose is to serve you with the best online digital logbook and employee scheduling software on the market so you can spend more time focusing on growing your business.

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