BUSINESS SPARKS – COVID-19 BUSINESS CASE STUDIES – Stumpy’s Roadhouse
In this series, the WBN highlights how members have adapted to changing business and consumer contexts by innovating within the business. By sharing their stories of change, we hope it gives confidence and insight to other Wheatbelt businesses.
Owned by Sean and Cathy Wood, Stumpy’s Roadhouse provides fuel, items for passenger and commercial vehicles, as well as a wide range of fresh, healthy, locally made, ready to eat foods and convenience items. Stumpy’s Roadhouse currently employs 17 locals and prior to COVID-19, 18 employees.
STRATEGIES YOU HAD IN PLACE BEFORE COVID19
Stumpy’s places a high value on employing, serving and supporting the local community and believes this value is central to its business model.
Stumpy’s also engage industry leaders and advisors when they see to develop an opportunity.
The owners and staff also try to improve internally as much as possible. Stumpy’s is also an active member of the WBN and other business groups.
STRATEGIES TO RETAIN YOUR STAFF DURING TOUGH BUSINESS PERIODS
As COVID19 restrictions set in, Stumpy’s split their workforce into two teams and changed the rosters, with a 4 on 3 off or 3 on 4 off model. This model was implemented in case a member of staff contradicted COVID19, it would only effect half the workforce. As a result of the roster change, staff also had to slightly reduce their hours but Stumpy’s consulted with them throughout.
Stumpy’s also redeployed staff within the business. One member of the team is currently studying at University. She was previously a kitchen hand but has now been redeployed to work in the administration and is currently:
- Updating all our processes and procedures
- Creating and implementing a new marketing plan
- Updating our website and ecommerce site
- Applying for grants
- Ensuring we have access to all the government assistance that we qualify for
- Creating a pictorial history of the COVID19 period to include in a book that they have been planning for their 25th business anniversary.
INNOVATIONS DURING COVID19
=> DELIVERY SERVICE Stumpy’s introduced a delivery service and a special menu (with reduced prices) to service the vulnerable members of the community.
=> PRICING Stumpy’s has also reduced their prices across a broad range of products to help the local community.
=>NEW PRODUCTS Stumpy’s has been finalising new product lines that includes easy to prepare food with long shelf life but still includes the nutritional value of 5 vegetables and 2 fruits
=> UPSKILLING STAFF Quiet time has been spent upskilling staff. For example staff have been trained in the kitchen for bulk orders which was previously only done by a few staff members. Additionally, Cathy is a trained pastry chef so she has been teaching staff new pastry cooking skills and donating the bakery goods to staff and those in the community they think may need them.
=> PROCUREMENT Stumpy’s is working with other businesses to procure resources to create new supply lines and product opportunities
=> WORKPLACE CULTURE Continually investing in the culture of the workplace and to ensure the business comes out stronger after COVID19
ADVICE TO WHEATBELT BUSINESSES
- Don’t try and be an expert in everything.
- Do what you do best, do the thing that got you involved in business in the first place and engage experts to do the rest.
- Be active in your community, the global economy is all very well but never forget your local community.
- Get involved with business groups where you can get your head out of the day to day running of your business and get an outsiders look at the big picture.