To incorporate labor costs into your recipes, you have several different options, but let's start with the basics. The most important thing to know is this:

Labor is an ingredient, just like any other ingredient.

The advantage of treating labor like an ingredient is that it doesn't add additional complexity to the software, while still allowing you to categorize labor differently so you are still able to gain solid insights into your laborr costs.

Having labor as an ingredient also allows a lot of flexibility in terms of how you add labor costs to your recipe.

Depending on the type of food business you operate, you may want to break down labor differently. For example, a restaurant may want to break down the labor cost per plate, or per dish. A food processor or manufacturing company may want to break down labor cost per shift. Let's break down the three primary ways that customers will add labor costs to their recipes.

Labor cost per item

If you know (or can easily calculate) the approximate labor cost to create a specific dish or item, you could create an ingredient something like the following:

The important things to note here are:

  1. An intuitive name so you know what you're actually creating (and can easily search for it when adding it to a recipe)
  2. The labor cost
  3. Categorize this as "Labor"
  4. Set the Purchase Quantity as "1"
  5. Leave the Purchase Weight and Purchase Volume blank.

After saving an ingredient like this, you could search for your "Caesar Salad" recipe, and add this ingredient ("Labor Cost for Caesar Salad") to your Caesar Salad recipe.

Labor cost per hour

One of the most common food business types to use labor cost per hour are catering companies. They will often have different staff for cooking / prepping meals as well as serving staff for serving meals. In cases like this, you could set up as many different Labor ingredients as you like with either average hourly wages or even naming your labor ingredient on a per-employee basis (E.g. "Jim's hourly wage", "Emily's hourly wage", etc.). 

If you're quoting an event and you know that you require 35 hours of junior kitchen staff, 16 hours of senior kitchen staff and 24 hours of serving staff - you could add all of these separate labor costs to your recipe in order to calculate the final cost for an event.

See two screenshots below for examples on how to use hourly wage as a labor ingredient.

Example labor ingredient showing average hourly kitchen staff wage

Example labor ingredient showing specific staff member's hourly wage

Labor cost per shift

Lastly, you may want to add labor costs to your recipes by adding a labor cost per shift. This is particularly useful for small scale food processors of manufacturing facilities where you know how much product you make in a shift, and you know what your approximate staffing costs for the shift are. In this case you could create a labor ingredient something like the following:

Using an ingredient like the above would be done in a master-recipe that has several sub-recipes. For example the master recipe might be called "Daily Chocolate Chip Cookie Production" - and it would have several sub-recipes added to it that might include:

  1. The number of chocolate chip cookie recipes you created during that day
  2. The daily labor cost as indicated in the sample screenshot above
  3. Maybe even packaging or utility costs as you see fit.

Hopefully the above examples have given you some ideas on how to incorporate labor costs into your recipes. If you need more help - just click to chat below and we'll do whatever we can to get you sorted!

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