This year EP, together with WMT Chartered Accountants, are exploring the future of tipping in the UK with the aim of providing clarity on the views of the hospitality industry. Following a survey with over 200 senior players, it is clear that – whilst the amounts and forms of tipping and service charge are debatable – there is a desire for an accreditation scheme for those who follow best practice principles.
Cash is still the most common form of payment for gratuities. For gratuities paid by card, whilst there is debate over who receives a share, nearly 60% believe credit card charges should be deducted before they are shared.
Over Christmas and into 2019 two surveys were created to explore, separately, the views of the industry and those of the consumer. The following results are those of business owners, managers and others in managerial positions.
The UK may be in a time of uncertainty when it comes to Brexit but luckily consumers are still craving experiences that the hospitality world provides. However, when it comes to paying the bill it can become a little tricky as there seems to be no general consensus on what and how tipping works.
Last year on the eve of the Conservative party conference the Prime Minister announced an intention to introduce new measures to ensure restaurant staff receive all tips from customers. The announcement caused uncertainty over what it will mean for the industry.
With these potential changes, EP and WMT created a survey which was completed by over 200 senior players in the hospitality sector to find some clarity.
- Most common form of gratuity was cash tips (25%) followed by card payment (21%), discretionary service charge on some bills (19%) and a discretionary service on all bills (16%)
- 33% share more than 90% of tips and service charge with staff and 31% share 100%. 26 of those surveyed didn’t share any proportion of tips and service charge
- There is no real clarity on who should receive a share of the tips and service charge. Results show its closely fought between these top three:
- 25% – waiting and kitchen staff
- 23% – all staff including managers
- 21% – all non-management staff
- Over half (60%) believe businesses should be allowed to deduct costs such as credit card charges before paying 100% of the remaining funds to staff
What does change bring:
38% would see a significant amount of cost implication should administration charges be outlawed but 22% would see none. 11% would no longer accept or process tips or service charges should this happen
• Operators believe the most important information to share with customers is that tips and service charge are discretionary (25%), which groups of staff receive a share (22%), and what proportion of gratuities is retained by the business as an administration charge (20%)