A Head Above the Rest at Hopheads Bar
Words by Earnest Lim

Discover how Hopheads, one of Singapore’s most popular bars, continues to reinvent itself.

Hopheads Bar is a gem of a bar located at the basement of 178 Clemenceau Avenue in Haw Par Glass Tower. The nondescript building hides a spacious underground bar that is the perfect place to unwind after a long day’s work. Not only does Hopheads Bar serve excellent craft beer and food, but the venue is full of entertainment options: darts, pool, ping pong and even beer pong. It’s no wonder that Hopheads Bar claims to be ‘The Only Heaven Underground.’

Hopheads Burger (Image courtesy of Hopheads Bar)

Due to the increasing popularity of Hopheads Bar, they had to upgrade their operations to reduce time-consuming tasks for employees while improving their service quality. Hopheads Bar approached NTUC’s Employment and Employability Institute (e2i) to enhance its operations through the WorkPro Job Redesign Initiative. Before the initiative, servers had to take customer orders down manually. The servers then pass them over to the kitchen or bar for the items to be prepared. The staff also had to consolidate the customer orders in a simple Excel sheet for tracking and reporting. This process was prone to error as staff members faced issues in deciphering handwriting, which resulted in preparing the wrong order for the customer. These mistakes added up to lost time and revenue for the company. Billing was also an issue at Hopheads Bar; employees had to manually key in a customer’s bill into the credit card machine, which further resulted in human error. Settling these discrepancies took away time from staff members who could be performing more productive tasks such as customer service or order taking.

The Hopheads Bar interiors (Image courtesy of Hopheads Bar)

The WorkPro Job Redesign Initiative resulted in Hopheads Bar investing in a Point-of-Sale System, e-ordering, kitchen management system, customer relationship management system, and an inventory tracking system. With the technological upgrades, servers now make orders through the POS system and iPad, which get sent to the kitchen immediately for processing. Upon preparation, the system helps servers quickly identify the right table and serve the correct order to the respective customer. This new process flow resulted in a significant decrease in incorrect order preparation, shortened processing time, and increased customer satisfaction.

Additionally, inventory and customer details can be managed and updated automatically through the system. Before the upgrade, staff members had to perform a daily stock take to ensure inventory accuracy. Stock takes are now only necessary every four to seven days instead.  During the billing process, staff can easily access customer records by looking through the CRM system and pulling up the customer’s order from the POS, which shortens the time required and reduces discrepancies.

Hopheads Bar Staff using POS System (Image courtesy of Hopheads Bar)

To ensure accountability, staff members log into the system with an account tied to their name when taking orders, allowing for quicker clarifications when issues arise. Employees also clock-in and out digitally through the system; reducing the time required to track he pays of part-time employees.

All these improvements have allowed Hophead Bar‘s management to spend significantly less time tracking business performance to focus on more productive areas. Cost control management has improved dramatically for the operations team as the entire operation flow digitally tracked. Hopheads Bar was also able to halve the number of service staff during peak periods from 12pm to 6pm. Hopheads Bar shared the productivity gains with two of its older workers (aged 50 and above) via a wage increment.

If you’re looking for a hangout spot to have a blast of a time, Hopheads Bar is the place for you. Hopheads Bar is also available as an event space for birthdays & weddings with strict COVID-19 safety measures to ensure guests’ safety.

For more information on Hopheads Bar, visit www.hopheadsbar.com

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