The fundamental prerequisite for creating a successful restaurant business is delivering a standard service to all your customers. You must have fixed the desired restaurant service standard of your restaurant in your head. However, unless you communicate your thoughts clearly to your restaurant staff, how will they know what you are expecting from them? Hence, you must explicitly specify your restaurant service standards regarding the plating, cleaning, and customer service to your employees, so that they strive hard to meet the requirements.
The best way to build a loyal customer base is to maintain the set restaurant service standards and have a restaurant operations manual that documents the service standards.
Customers love it when they know what they will receive when they walk into a restaurant. You must have set restaurant service standards which include the consistency in food quality, quantity and taste, and the expected customer service. Standard procedures would help you ensure consistency in service, which in turn would help you generate customer loyalty.
Now you may wonder, how should you fix the restaurant service standard and deliver it to all the employees to ensure that all your restaurant staff is on the same page? Read below, and you will understand how you can convey your restaurant service standards to your team in the best way possible.
Basic Restaurant Service Standards That Must Be Followed
While service standards at each restaurant differ based on the restaurant type, format, and theme, there are specific service standards and etiquettes that remain common throughout. For instance, in a self-serving fast food restaurant, you don’t need to especially greet the guests and seat them, while at a fine dining restaurant, it is a must. Some of the most common restaurant service standards are-
- Welcoming the guests with a hospitable gesture.
- Offering them the desired table or the bar or waiting area if there is a wait time.
- Presenting the guests with a menu and wait for a few minutes before going over for the order.
- Assisting the customer in placing an order by explaining the dishes (if asked), and repeating the order to ensure no mistakes in order taking.
- Ensuring that the order is served to the customer as soon as it is prepared and minimizing the delay between placing the order and serving it.
- Delivering the food at the table, and serving it to the customers, if needed as per your restaurant’s service standards.
- Checking to see if the food is alright or if the customers wish to order more at intervals.
- Clearing off the table only once the customers are done with their meal or drink.
- Reducing delay while billing.
- Asking for feedback about the service.
- Ensuring hospitality even after the customer has paid the bill and is about to leave.
Use this Customer Service Checklist to ensure that you maintain optimum restaurant service standards and deliver an exceptional guest experience to your customers.
How To Maintain Restaurant Service Standards That Will Help Your Business Grow
You must convey the expected restaurant service standards clearly to your restaurant staff. Doing so will ensure that all your employees are on the same page while delivering the services at your restaurant. The various ways by which you can ensure that the restaurant service standards are maintained are:
1. Document The Expected Restaurant Service Standards
Once you have a comprehensive report of what needs to be done, it becomes simple for all your restaurant staff. What they need to do is to just follow whatever is documented diligently. Make a list of how each item on your menu needs to be plated. If required, ask your executive chef to prepare the dishes and show how the plating needs to be done. You can even take a picture of the prepared dishes and put it up on the plating area, which will ensure that the staff never forget or confuse with the plating.
Similarly, when it comes to cleaning, create a checklist of staff both in the front and in the back end needs to do. All the team needs to do, is check off the tasks each day after performing them.
2. Train Your Staff At Regular Intervals
Training can make or break your restaurant. A band of well trained and efficient restaurant staff can play a significant role in paving the success of your restaurant. Unless you train your new staff and refresh the memory of your existing staff at regular intervals, then you can hardly expect to run your restaurant by adhering to all the standards specified by you.
When it comes to the new employees on board, you can organize training sessions and provide them with a manual that they can look back at in times of crisis.
In addition to this, you must also refresh the memory of all your existing staff at regular intervals. For this, you can organize training sessions every once a month, and it is imperative to review and update the restaurant manual quarterly. This will help you to keep the restaurant staff updated on the restaurant service standards.
3. Take A Follow Up At Regular Intervals
Both documenting the tasks and training at regular intervals will be useless unless you follow up with your staff and check if your restaurant staff religiously follows all the functions. Staff tends to skip work and take opportunities for the loopholes in the system. Checking to see that your management team and line employees are doing things the way you want them done for every aspect of the business is critical to your restaurant success.
4. Promote Accountability Among Your Employees
Unless you can hold your restaurant staff accountable for the activities that are performed in your restaurant, who will hold you if the tasks are not performed as per the set standards. In your absence, it is your restaurant manager who must take care of all the activities, and it is him whom you should hold accountable if anything in your absence happens at your restaurant. Once you hold your managers responsible for their actions, they too will be on their toes to assure that all your restaurant staff adheres to the expected restaurant service standards in the restaurant.
Maintaining restaurant service standards is fundamentally essential; this will help you to retain your customers. Unless you have a talented band who relentlessly works to live up to your restaurant service standards, you will not be able to experience the desired result out of your restaurant business.