Are you in the food industry and navigating how to respond to the COVID-19 crisis? We’ve had quite the year of upheavals and restrictions, and it can be difficult to know how to re-enter the food industry while still staying safe and up-to-date. Here are some helpful responses to inspire and educate you as you work in the food industry during these uncertain times.
1. Cite your sources, and be consistent. You may remember this saying from your college days, but it still rings true in the food industry. Let your patrons know how you’re making your decisions; this will allow customers to feel informed and confident in their choices of your dining establishment. For example, on Chili’s website they have an entire page dedicated to their COVID-19 response. Part of this page explains, “We are actively monitoring COVID-19 by staying close to the official guidance provided by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO) and all government guidelines and mandates….” By letting customers know that they are following CDC and WHO guidelines, Chili’s is building trust and proving that they are doing all they can to maintain a safe environment. Look at credible sources for your guidelines, and then let customers know where you got your information! This will alleviate confusion while building positive rapport. Additionally, be consistent. Use the same sources throughout all of your establishments, so that customers can know what to expect. One clear way to do this is to incorporate a waitlist app like Kyobee. By using the same system, customers will appreciate your consistency and feel comfortable since they know what to expect.
2. Touch-free payment is the new normal. Located in Waco, TX, Magnolia is a popular brand started by TV stars Chip and Joanna Gaines. On their Magnolia website , they explain that they have “contactless payment available for [their] guests” at locations including their coffee shop and bakery. Waitlist apps such as Kyobee allow for a contactless pay-at-table option, allowing guests to safely and comfortably pay from their own tables whenever they are ready to leave. This promotes safety and keeps guests distanced from one another and adhering to safety recommendations while simultaneously giving guests a seamless payment experience.
3. Seat a reduced amount of guests inside the dining room. When restaurants do open, they are opening at a limited capacity. Olive Garden’s website encapsulates this trend well: “We seat at limited capacity and follow local guidelines for table spacing.” While limited seating is necessary to keep everyone comfortable and safe, it can make customers even more confused about how long their wait times will be to get a table inside. Thankfully, waitlist apps like Kyobee can help by clearly showing customers the amount of wait time they have left and the number of parties in front of them. This allows customers to be in-the-loop while keeping the number of people in your restaurant at a safe number and eliminating crowds. By keeping your store fronts consistent, incorporating touch-free payment options, and reducing the capacity of guests allowed inside, you will be staying up-to-date on restaurant trends while still building your business. Incorporate Kyobee into your system, and watch how all of these elements run smoothly and well!
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