Republic runs a really varied group of outlets, how do you make that work?
Yeah, we do have a wide ranging group of outlets from really mainstream pubs, through to late night party bars, high volume restaurants and then throw in a full Ice Bar for good measure. We let each of our venue managers create a plan for how they want to run their venues best and then make sure they use a core group of technology products to make sure we have that core consistency in how things are done across the group.
We like to think we’ve got this balance right, but we’re always working on it and tweaking it.
At the heart of the group is the iconic Winnies Pizza bar, what makes people love Winnies so much?
Well it hasn’t changed a lot since it opened and there is just something about the way that Winnies was put together that makes it feel like a great bar and restaurant to be in.
Obviously the opening roof, which opens up in the middle of winter and lets the snow in, is pretty memorable and Winnies was doing gourmet pizza before people knew what gourmet pizza was. I suppose it just had a lot of great things for people to tell their friends about and that’s how it became a national icon.
My job now is just to make sure that the team keep the energy high and people come in and have a great time.
Tell us a little more about the idea of creating operations consistency across your group?
With a number of really busy venues in a transient town, we know that if we don’t have our key operations systems dialled in and easy to use, then we spend our whole time chasing our tail rather than being able to constantly improve the businesses. That’s how we initially started looking at Loaded, as we really wanted to dial in our reporting and labour management and streamline things between the site and the admin team, and i’m pretty stoked with how well we have this all operating across the group now.
How has Loaded made your role as CEO easier?
I’m a bit embarrassed to admit it, but Loaded is the first thing I look at in the morning and the last thing I look at at night. I just take a lot of confidence that I know exactly how all the venues are performing and that i’m not going to get any nasty surprises.
Because each of the venue managers has the information they need to manage their team in real time, my job has become a lot more straight forward as i’m a lot more confident that they are making good decisions and doing this based on accurate information.