Restaurant Work Schedule Template

A restaurant work schedule template for Excel - totally free! Use it to schedule staff at your restaurant. Instructions included in the file so you'll never lose them.

graphic with a screenshot of the restaurant work schedule template

Table of Contents

Looking for a work schedule template to use at your restaurant? We get it. Managing labor at a restaurant isn’t easy.

We’ve got you covered with our free, pre-built restaurant work schedule template for Excel.

To help you get started, we include step-by-step instructions directly in the template. The only thing you need is Microsoft Excel or another popular spreadsheet program.

What is the restaurant work schedule template?

The restaurant work schedule template is an employee scheduling template created and edited using Microsoft Excel, a popular spreadsheet program for Windows.

The template can also be used with other popular spreadsheet programs, such as Google Sheets and LibreOffice Calc, both of which are free.

So you don’t actually need Excel to use our templates – you can use the spreadsheet program you’re most comfortable with!

What’s included in the template:

  • fill-in-the-blank shift schedule worksheet
  • instructions inside the template
  • automatic calculator feature

How to use the restaurant work schedule template

We made it easy for you by providing a monthly fixed-shift structure with example shifts and instructions inside the spreadsheet.

There are only 2 things you need to do:

  1. first, update the names of your staff, and
  2. second, enter the details of each shift.

At the bottom of the spreadsheet, the schedule will automatically track hours for you based on the durations you set. Check the numbers in the “Total Hours Per Week” row.

Why schedule restaurant team members using a spreadsheet?

Spreadsheet-based restaurant schedule templates are much faster and more organized than trying to build a schedule by hand. This is why restaurant managers have used spreadsheet templates for years.

Many schedule templates, like ours, run in Microsoft Excel or a similar spreadsheet program.

In general, schedule templates require you to input the data and set up the shifts yourself. Then, when you’re done, you print and/or post the finished schedule at your workplace.

You can also email it or post it online in a place only your team can access (such as your company’s employee portal).

Limitations of spreadsheet templates

While they do speed things up a bit, spreadsheet templates still take time to set up and use.

A woman considering the pros and cons of restaurant work schedule templates that rely on spreadsheets.

We did most of the up-front work for you, but if you need to update your restaurant work schedule, you’ll have to go back into the template to change the way you’ve assigned shifts. This is just part of using spreadsheets for scheduling. Excel can’t make the changes or assign shifts for you.

What this means is that you’ll probably still be spending a lot of time building schedules, though probably not as much as if you wrote them down by hand.

Other limitations of spreadsheet-based templates include:

  • They don’t factor in break and meal period tracking, which can get pretty hairy in some cities and states.
  • They also don’t track time off requests, automatically update with shift swaps, or send you alerts when you’re at risk of overstaffing or understaffing.

If you run a multi-unit restaurant business, you’ll want to make use of shift swaps, especially for creating an internal gig economy between locations.

Other work schedule template options for restaurants

When you’re ready to spend less time making rota schedules, we recommend TimeForge.

Our AutoScheduler and RoboSchedules tools can automatically create or suggest work schedules for you in seconds. Because they live in the cloud, TimeForge schedules can be accessed from anywhere using a mobile phone or one of our labor management mobile apps.

TimeForge Dashboard

And unlike spreadsheet-based templates, our scheduling software will notify employees when a new schedule is posted. This means your team will always know exactly when they work.

Intrigued? Learn more about TimeForge employee scheduling. In the meantime, we hope you enjoy our free restaurant work schedule template!

For tips on managing a restaurant, you might also like our Restaurant Management eBook. It’s especially geared toward beginners who are just getting started.

Monitor your restaurant effortlessly

Creating a restaurant schedule is only half of the battle. You’ll also need to monitor how well your employees stick to it.

However, keeping an eye on the time clock is a tedious way to regulate your team. While it can often be an adequate way to curtail payroll expenses, it also increases frustration and costs among management staff and prevents managers from doing more important tasks, such as interacting with customers.

TimeForge dashboard

TimeForge supports many ways to supervise workers without spending all of your time in front of the time clock, including:

  • Team member work scheduling online
  • Attendance that can be viewed and edited online
  • Reinforcing the schedule with a grace period for clocking in or out
  • Pinpointing “most different” time punches
  • Allowing other team members to act as witnesses when employees show up before their shift begins
  • Using the mobile app to conveniently check on your labor costs when you’re not at work (including an above-store dashboard for multi-unit restaurants)

If you want, TimeForge can automatically notify managers or supervisors when team members show up early or tardy – and when they clock in and out.

For example, TimeForge can notify you by email and text message when workers show up more than 10 minutes before their shift is scheduled to begin.

Types of restaurants that use TimeForge include:

  • quick service
  • counter service
  • table service
  • fast casual
  • fine dining
  • and more!

Intrigued? Learn more about TimeForge employee scheduling.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I adapt the restaurant work schedule template for a different industry?

Yes, while the restaurant work schedule template is designed specifically for restaurants, it can be adapted for use in other industries.

You may need to make some adjustments to fit your specific needs, but the basic structure of the template should be applicable to any business that requires employee scheduling.

How do I handle shift swaps or time off requests with the restaurant work schedule template?

The restaurant work schedule template does not have built-in functionality for handling shift swaps or time off requests. If an employee needs to swap shifts or request time off, you will need to manually adjust the schedule in the spreadsheet.

Another option is to use a tool like TimeForge, which automatically updates the schedule based on approved shift swaps and time off requests.

Does the restaurant work schedule template include functionality for tracking labor costs?

No, the restaurant work schedule template does not include functionality for tracking actual labor costs. It will only show you estimated costs for the schedule you have created.

However, TimeForge’s labor management software does offer this feature, along with many others, such as automatic schedule creation, employee notifications, and mobile access.

Share this resource

Latest resources

TimeForge for Franchisees

Join our industry newsletter for tips & insights

Want to be a labor management pro? Sign up for our newsletter to receive thought leadership, labor management news, and timely insights from industry experts.

We’re committed to your privacy. TimeForge uses the information you provide to contact you about our relevant content, products, and services. You may unsubscribe from these communications at any time. For more information, see our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

graphic with a screenshot of the restaurant work schedule template

Restaurant Work Schedule Template

Please enter your name and valid email below to get your free copy.

By clicking the button below, you agree to be contacted about this resource. This could include an email copy of the resource, download links, how-to-guides, or other help. For more information, see our Privacy Policy.

Your download is ready!