While running a bar can be challenging, it can also be rewarding for those who have a passion for the industry and are willing to put in the necessary effort. 

However, ask any bar owner or manager, and they will most likely tell you that perfecting employee rosters and ensuring they are communicated well to staff is one of the biggest challenges.

Based on conversations with 1000's of bar owners and managers, here are our top tips to perfect staff bar rosters:


Plan Ahead: Create the roster well in advance, considering factors like anticipated customer demand, events, and peak hours. Planning ahead allows you to allocate the right number of staff members for each shift.

Consider Skill Levels: Take into account the skills and experience of your bar staff when creating the roster. Assign more experienced staff members during busy shifts or events when the workload is high.

Balance Workload: Distribute responsibilities evenly among the staff members to avoid burnout and ensure smooth operations. Rotate tasks such as serving customers, preparing drinks, and cleaning duties to keep things fair.

Incorporate Flexibility: Leave some flexibility in the roster to accommodate unforeseen circumstances, such as staff absences or sudden changes in demand. This will allow you to make adjustments without disrupting the workflow.

Communicate Effectively: Clearly communicate the roster to your staff, ensuring that everyone is aware of their assigned shifts and any changes that may occur. Utilize digital tools or scheduling apps to streamline communication and keep everyone informed.


Overstaff or Understaff: Avoid overstaffing, as it can lead to idle staff members and unnecessary costs. Similarly, understaffing can result in poor customer service and overwhelmed employees. Find the right balance based on anticipated demand.

Neglect Breaks and Rest Periods: Ensure that your roster includes appropriate break times and rest periods for your bar staff. Failing to provide sufficient breaks can result in fatigue, reduced productivity, and potential legal compliance issues.

Ignore Staff Availability and Preferences: Consider the availability and preferences of your staff when creating the roster. While it may not be possible to accommodate everyone's requests, try to find a balance that considers their needs and improves staff satisfaction.

Rely Solely on Seniority: While experience and seniority can be important factors, solely relying on them when creating the roster may create dissatisfaction among other staff members. Consider a fair mix of senior and junior staff members for each shift.

Overcomplicate the Roster: Keep the roster as simple and straightforward as possible. Avoid creating overly complex schedules that are difficult to understand or manage. Simplicity can help minimize errors and confusion.

By following these do's and don'ts, you can create an effective bar staff roster that ensures optimal coverage, maximizes efficiency, and maintains staff satisfaction.