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5 Ways to Boost Restaurant Productivity


by Richard Saporito

Restaurants often play by their own rules. There’s not much by way of a uniform way of conducting operations; it’s all based on the night of the week, time of the year, and a bunch of other factors that determine how the night’s work will pan out. With that being said, restaurant productivity can be an issue, and it’s one that can drive owners up the wall. Below, we take a look at a few ways in which you can get your restaurant staff working to their full capacity.

Review Your Operations

The first thing you should do is to review your current productivity levels. It’s easy enough to do: from when a customer places an order, how long is it until they have their plate of food in front of them? If it’s a longer time than you’d like, then try to analyse where the hold up is. You might be making one simple mistake which, when removed, speeds up the process considerably. For a point of reference, the average wait time was shown in a study to be 23 minutes.

Extra Staff

More often than not, a slow kitchen is down to one simple fact: there are not enough hands on deck to adequately take care of all the orders that come through. While of course, unexpected rushes through the door can happen, especially if you get a large group coming in, you should more or less know how busy an evening is going to be before the restaurant even opens. Some restaurants like to cut costs by not having too many dining room service staff members on any one shift. But, if it improves waiting times and thus customer satisfaction, it’s worth exploring the option. Proper and creative scheduing is crucial for keeping payroll costs down.

Well-Stocked, Easy To Find

Talking about reviewing your operations, how is the kitchen organization? A chef losing a couple of minutes of work because they are looking for supplies, or waiting for an order to reach their ‘to make’ list might not seem like much, but it all adds up. Even if those two minutes don’t matter, spending time looking for kitchen equipment and the like can derail the rhythm of the chef’s routine. They need to have everything to hand so that they’re able to do their work, not spending time digging through drawers and cupboards.

Happy Staff

There is study after study that demonstrates that happy restaurant dining room customer service staff are productive staff. So let’s think about this: how happy are your staff? If you’re working them too hard or creating a culture that isn’t open and enjoyable to work in, then you might be costing yourself more than you think. If you treat your staff well, they’ll be happy in their job and reward you with increased productivity.

Striking the Balance

Once you’ve made any essential changes, it’s important to keep an eye on how it is affecting the overall quality of your establishment. Working faster (and earning more profits at the same time) will do more harm than good if the quality of your food begins to suffer!




About the Author:
Improve Restaurant Customer Service - Proper Floor Diagrams & Table Numbering
Richard Saporito is the Founder of Topserve Restaurant Consulting, author of “How To Improve Dining Room Service.” If you’d like to improve your restaurants’ service reputation and increase sales, contact Richard today for a Free Initial Consultation by calling (888) 276-4808 or visiting his
Contact Page.

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