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July 1st, 2021 – Birmingham, Michigan – CitySide Ventures and Birmingham Angels announces adding Shifty to its portfolio of companies.

Birmingham Angels, a CitySide’s Capital Network, just joined a partial seed round investment in Shifty.

Shifty is a fun and engaging training program that is designed specifically for servers and bartenders.  This software solution is derived from a tried and true “Paper Training System” that has been developed over the past twenty five years and has been used to train thousands of service industry people that come face to face with guests every day. In the restaurant world, every shift matters, especially the first shifts. 

Most server or bartender training programs in restaurants consist of the manager simply pairing the new employee with whomever happens to be their most experienced server working that night.  The trainer reluctantly agrees, only because he/she doesn’t really have a choice and they are expected to “show them the ropes”.   In most cases there are no training materials at all, but if anything does exist, it is likely outdated and does not have the current menu items, product offerings or policies that have been implemented.  

The places that are known to have a GREAT training program are typically places that have created a gigantic 3-ring binder, that includes pages-upon-pages of antiquated, dry and technical information, that the employee is expected to read and retain.  Their food training consists of extremely detailed recipes, with lists of ingredients, measurements and methods that in reality would only be useful to the prep cook or possibly a line cook, who ironically are never expected to read the same materials.  

Then comes time for the test that the manager has been threatening since the start of their training.  The test typically consists of several pages of multiple choice questions and questions where the employee is expected to regurgitate every ingredient, measurement and method in full detail for every single item.  Research shows that studying for a test like this creates a great deal of stress and anxiety. The majority of students feverishly study the night before the exam, and cram all the information into their brain and then pour it all out on the paper at test time and it’s gone for good.  

It’s no wonder that the average job tenure for a restaurant employee in the US is just one month and 26 days.

We believe that the company couldn’t have a better starting point as the industry is coming out of the pandemic. The hospitality industry is experiencing a tough time recruiting new workers and more difficult to train the workforce. Shifty offers a new and unique way by taking the training and development of new staff to a whole new level. Started and is driven by a founder that has been active in restaurants for 20 years and gives the company a distinct competitive advantage. We are delighted to be a part of it and they are right here in Birmingham.”  – David Weaver – Chief Investment Officer at CitySide Ventures

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