Summer is a busy season for every service industry – especially restaurants. A steady stream of holidays, weddings, festivals, and other special events cause big increases in spending on travel, hotels, and eating out.
Bruce Grimby of the National Restaurant Association, said restaurants are expected to add 490,000 jobs this summer season, according to their 19th Annual Eating and Drinking Place Summer Employment Forecast.
This seasonal boost necessitates an uptick in seasonal jobs. Every summer, the restaurant industry sees a tremendous amount of turnover and labor fluctuations. When your beach location is only open 3 months a year, it can be challeng to retain the best employees. Few people are able to sustain unemployment for 75% of the year – and so when the season changes, your summer standbys will seek out more sustainable work.
Technology helps to level the playing field with a labor market in flux. With the right tools in your restaurant, even novice employees can offer personalized service that make diners feel welcome and important.
In her article “How Technology is Helping Restaurants Connect with Consumers,” journalist Natasha Stokes explains that the rising costs of labor is pushing QSRs to adopt affordable, automated processes to connect directly with guests. Full-service restaurants, on the other hand, will “evolve to focus more sharply on an experience: from highly trained waiter service to sleek apps and virtual reality technology, all designed to enhance the on- and offline richness of a meal.”
Recording as much information as possible not only helps restaurants plan ahead for future summers; it also helps streamline training for new employees. If you know which seasonal dishes are the most popular vs. the most profitable, how many guests heard about you on social media, and which servers had the most success upselling drinks, then you have all the ingredients you need for a fresh and effective marketing strategy.
The National Restaurant Association reports that roughly 1 in 6 eating and drinking establishments solely operate on a seasonal basis, because the profits just aren’t there during other seasons. If you’re getting ready to close down for the fall, now is a great time to review the data your Point of Sale recorded about this summer’s profits. If you operate all year long, take this opportunity to review your current strategy, and improve it for the autumn.