The restrictions for on-premise dining is starting to lighten up, do you have a plan in place for recovery? Having a plan is essential to get a business running again.

What do your current operations look like? Take the time to look at your situation and decide on the essential steps to get your doors open. Unfortunately, due to the outbreak of COVID-19, some restaurants have closed doors completely. Still, in business or not, it’s time to start having an eye towards recovery.

Every restaurant is in a different situation. Some may have to look at this almost like a re-opening and we want to be able to help. In this blog post, we’re going to cover the best practices for your current operations and the necessary steps to get you on the road to recovery.

Maintaining Current Operations The Right Way

The shift to takeout and delivery only pivoted business as we know it. But, work at the moment looks a little different for everybody. There are lots of factors to consider while maintaining your current operations.

We have to continue to focus on what’s necessary to move towards recovery. This includes a healthy work environment and proper communication with your guests.

Both of these go hand in hand to maintain current operations. Your guests need to know about the extra measure you are taking as a business to ensure their safety. Doing this will be helpful as the time comes for restrictions to be lifted.

Now is the time to double down on your cleaning efforts to ensure the safety of your guests and staff. Also, maintaining social distance is key. This is going to be continually enforced as restaurants begin to reopen.

You also want to make sure you are suitably scheduling your employees. Smart scheduling involves avoiding overstaffing and extra communication between management and employees.

As you take these factors into consideration, begin to create a plan for your restaurant to get back up on its feet.

The Plan Itself

The road to recovery might be sooner than you think. The National Restaurant Association recently released the Restaurant Reopening Guidance. This gives restaurants the guidance needed on some of the most important practices.

The four main topics are:

  1. Food Safety
  2. Cleaning and Sanitizing
  3. Monitoring Employee Health and Personal Hygiene
  4. Social Distancing

When restrictions begin to lift, these are going to be the important areas to always focus on. ServSafe and the Food and Drug Administration created this guide to cover protocols to help you reopen safely.

On top of this guide and as we phase into reopening, here are three more things to consider:

1. Operations

Do you currently still have staff employed or will you need to go through a hiring period? It’s important to prepare yourself to roll with new regulations whatever they may be.

As for social distancing, that max occupancy in your restaurant may change. This can alter your floor plan and it could determine the size of your staff needed.

Technology is going to be helpful in your daily operations. It can help you reduce face-to-face interaction, keeping your guests and staff safe.

To also help with this, consider offering reservation-only seating. You can better space people out and maintain social distancing for all.

With a restaurant management system, such as Guest Manager, you can text your guests upon arrival and help reduce interaction time. We have to do our best to help reduce the spread of COVID-19 with what we can.

2. Safety

Before reopening, you need to have proper NSF certified equipment and cleaning supplies. If your restaurant has closed down, you must thoroughly clean and sanitize everything.

Take the time to figure out how you can make your restaurant safer. This can include and not be limited to the reusable items that are frequently used. Menus, silverware, and linens need to be cleaned and sanitized after every use.

Monitor the health of your employees as they come into work for each shift. If anybody presents signs of illness, follow the CDC’s guidelines, and send them home.

Put extra safety measures in place if needed. Each restaurant will be different but, regardless, the safety of your guests and staff is key. Check out these safety recommendations for reopening and delivery and takeout.

3. Inventory

What’s your daily inventory currently looking like? As restaurants have been offering takeout only, menu items may have changed.

You should track items that have been selling well and use this time to get rid of inventory that wasn’t. Put some of it to use by donating meals to your community and frontline workers.

We can’t predict how the business will be as it comes time to reopen. So, slowly stock up on your inventory and be aware not to overbuy items.

For the best practices on restaurant inventory, download our free eBook. But, if you’re starting from scratch, here is an opening a restaurant checklist to help you out.

Be Prepared and Remain Optimistic

When it’s time to reopen, don’t discourage yourself if things take a while to get back to normal.  It’s going to take time for everybody, some more than others, to be comfortable dining in again. Hence why it’s necessary to go the extra mile in your safety efforts.

Takeout and delivery are still going to be on the rise. Make sure you’re equipped for it if you aren’t yet. Learn how to get set up with online ordering and a restaurant management system here.

With the help from the Restaurant Reopening Guidance and tips above, do you have an idea of what your plan to recovery will be?

We’re all in this together. Get set up with Guest Manager and online ordering today. Both of these can help you manage your business in a safe and efficient way.

Set small actionable goals when you create your plan and be on the road to recovery in no time.