Fourth is the culmination of decades of hard work and a greater vision for workforce management. The joint businesses of HotSchedules and Fourth, which now make up Fourth Enterprises, are dedicated to improving the productivity and efficiency of businesses operating in the hospitality and retail space.
We specialise in providing hospitality and retail businesses with the means to streamline their HR and payment processes, optimize staffing, decrease supply chain costs and also provide intuitive streams of data that ensure cost-effectiveness and employee wellness go hand in hand.
To our clients, we offer a comprehensive array of services, all implemented under the Fourth umbrella, which means they can have a single source of truth to improve their entire workforce and human capital management in one place. This means payroll, T&A, compliance and analytics, to name only a few, are all available from one trusted source.
Where did the idea for the company come from?
Back in 1999, two start-ups (HotSchedules and Fourth) on two separate continents had a startlingly similar mission: to build a comprehensive technology platform to remove some of the time-consuming, manual, spreadsheet-based processes that bogged down those in restaurants and hospitality.
Both businesses grew exponentially and in July 2019, HotSchedules and Fourth merged to bring the best of both products under one roof and provide truly great services to our clients and their employees. With our single, unified platform of best-in-class technology solutions and services, we are delivering disruptive solutions that improve the lives of everyone working for and in retail and hospitality.
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How has the company evolved during the pandemic?
Naturally working with thousands of hospitality businesses during this time has been an eye-opener to the struggles and often uncertainty of the sector. The pandemic has been the biggest challenge this industry has faced during any of our lives. We’ve been in a privileged position to be able to help our clients and their employees manage their business throughout this tumultuous period.
The uncertainty that accompanied the COVID-19 pandemic has been the greatest challenge. As a technology partner to our customers, we have been able to provide solutions to many of the challenges the industry has faced since we first went into lockdown over a year ago. Whether that is helping businesses to implement a furlough system via our software or keeping track of earned wages and giving employees access to that money as and when they need it, we have worked closer than ever with our clients to guarantee that employee security and wellness is at the forefront and remained strong throughout the pandemic.
We have also seen that our clients need to be able to speak with their employees quickly and effectively as regulations change. Our Employee Engagement and Mobile platforms, for example, provide our clients with the ability to clearly communicate with employees by providing consistent information and updates to workers regarding what to expect with reopenings.
We have also been able to help restaurants and retailers begin to re-open in a restricted operating environment, allowing restaurants, hotels and retailers to design easily accessible “quick start guides” as employees return to work, and utilise a Covid symptom checker pre-shift to maintain high levels of safety within the work environment. We are grateful that we have been able to support so many of our customers through these difficult times and we are all excited about the better days that seem not so far away.
What can we hope to see from Fourth in the future?
Never stop growing! We’re always open to welcoming industries into our portfolio that will benefit and evolve by using our unique and powerful solution set. Fourth’s goal is to help create a seamless connection between the employee, the employer and the business and with each passing day, comes new opportunities for new and disruptive tech to help further the in-house processes of hospitality and retail industries.
With the reopening of the retail and hospitality industries upon us, new demands and expectations from the customer and the employee are undoubtedly going to emerge in the months to come. At Fourth, it’s our responsibility to be ready for those new expectations and to be able to provide solutions and technology for employers and employees to solve these problems and optimise supply chain and staff operations.