Fintech startup All Gravy is aiming to help hospitality businesses amidst a growing labour shortage with better, more employee-centric payroll solutions. The Danish innovators have just raised €3.2 million and plan to ride the gravy train to the UK.
Across Europe, the hospitality and retail industries have been dealing with a sustained labour crisis. It’s come as the result of the pandemic, a rising cost of living crisis, and in the case of the UK, the fallout of Brexit shouldn’t be understated. Staff turnover in hospitality has hit an all-time high, and it’s putting pressure on businesses that are simply unable to find staff to cover shifts.
It’s reported that in the UK alone, hospitality faces a 7.9% vacancy rate. At the same time, the cost of living crisis has put added pressure on hourly paid workers facing unpredictable salaries and the uncertainty of shift work. There are as many as 90 million people in Europe who are either hourly paid or gig workers.
Hospitality businesses need a simple way to reduce staff turnover, incentive new employees, and, support their employees during these uncertain times. A fintech startup, founded in 2020 by Jonatan Rasmussen, CEO and Kristian Lundager, CTO, in Copenhagen, is aiming to make it All Gravy, offering an operating system for hourly paid workers in the hospitality and retail sectors.
CEO Jonatan Rasmussen: “The All Gravy people operating system works like a workforce optimisation tool. It provides a mix of qualitative and quantitative insights, allowing the HR or ops team to make strategic decisions rather than just putting out fires.”
“We believe that hourly paid workers have more options than ever over where they work. Restaurants and shops urgently need to retain employees for longer and they need to understand their employees better. Our customers tell us that what’s in the best interest of employees is in the best interest of the employer – everyone can win.”
All Gravy has just raised a seed round of €3.2 million to help restaurants and shops understand, motivate and retain their hourly-paid employees.
The seed round was led by Moonfire, Founders, Upfin and The Nordic Web Ventures and a syndicate of angels including Bradley Horowitz (Global VP Product, Google) and Phil Chambers (CEO, Peakon).
Other angels include Terese Hougaard (Partner, Atomico), Dan Winn (CTO, Deliveroo), Caroline Hjelm (Head of Marketing, Voi) and Dorte Bregnhøj (Global VP & Head of Talent, Bain & Co).
With this fresh funding, the startup plans to expand to the UK as well as to build out the suite of products and accelerate growth in Denmark and Sweden.
Help for hospitality
The restaurant industry traditionally has a huge turnover of staff, with an average annual churn of 75% – a percentage that has been rising since the pandemic. This costs the industry 100s of millions of pounds due to recruitment and selection, training and education, productivity loss and exit costs.
All Gravy’s people operating system includes an integrated financial wellness app on iOS and Android which helps increase employee motivation, flexibility and retention. It helps hourly paid employees understand their earnings, plan their savings and even get paid as soon as the shift ends, free of charge. This motivates them to take more shifts and stay with their employer.
CTO Kristian Lundager: “The leading hospitality and retail companies are looking for the tools that will give them an edge in creating the best work environment – that is what All Gravy provides. Just like in the tech industry where Google, Apple and others set the bar for attracting and retaining staff, now the hospitality chains we speak to want to do the same thing.”
The suite of tools also includes a “shift marketplace” to help managers fill vacant shifts across multiple locations and to give employees greater choice.
“Employers in the sector generally lack the tools to understand churn rate, sentiment and support employee engagement. They don’t know when or why people are quitting. That’s one of the things All Gravy analytics solves.”
The company has signed deals with some of the largest hospitality chains in Denmark, including McDonald’s, and has signed up over 150 restaurants as customers. Companies choosing All Gravy are seeing the difference: reporting 20% more shifts taken per employee, 15% increased retention and the increased ability to attract talent with instant access to wages earned.
Bradley Horowitz, VP Product at Google: “I was impressed with All Gravy’s user-centric way of thinking, and this closeness to their users really shows up in the feel of the product. I’m happy to be investing in a company that is a force for good for a group of people that’s often overlooked in the tech world.”
Mattias Ljungman, Founding Partner at Moonfire: “All Gravy can revolutionise how millions of hourly paid workers operate. With the labour shortages we’re seeing in hospitality and retail, attracting, retaining and understanding data on your employees is business critical. We’re excited to be partnering with All Gravy.”