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10 Ways to Improve Service Industry Operations

StrategyDriven Tactical Execution Article | 10 Ways to Improve Service Industry OperationsRunning a restaurant, eatery, or any business in the service industry requires grit, determination, and intelligence, all rolled up into one. In any case, restaurateurs have to contend with a range of issues such as competition, the economy, and seasonality, to keep their businesses afloat and increase sales.

Nowadays, restaurants are no longer about cooking and serving meals alone, but also about consumer experience, ambiance, convenience, and good service.

If you want to see diners coming back to your restaurant every time, then you have no choice but to improve your operations. Here are a few tips on how to go about it.

1. Utilize Restaurant Technology

Any business in the service industry that is yet to embrace technology stands to lose a lot. Technology has improved operational efficiency by reducing workload, eliminating paperwork, streamlining services, and ultimately increasing sales.

With the emergence of digital menu boards and other restaurant digital signage, restaurants should expect up to 31.8% increase in sales. No. They do not work like magic. Research shows that 80% of consumers are likely to enter a restaurant after seeing attractive signage.

Moreover, these display systems allow you to incorporate full-motion videos into your menus so that you can reach and engage your customers easily.

2. Expand Menu Offerings

Expanding your menu offerings is another great way of improving operations and increasing sales. By giving your customers more options on the menu, they are likely to stream back and even invite their friends to your restaurant.

This brings us back to the use of digital menu boards. The benefits of using digital menu boards are almost endless. So dynamic are these digital boards that you can add more items to the menu display, include information about ingredients, or change the menu content at the touch of a button.

Nevertheless, you should be very careful when creating your menu and learn about the various digital menu board mistakes you should avoid if you want to attract more customers to your establishment.

3. Take Advantage of Social Media

Social media is a game-changer in almost every sector and the service industry is no exception. You can use social media to expand your reach and retain your current customers for free.

Social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram allow you to connect with your customers by liking or replying to their comments. You can also encourage your fans to share your posts, photos, and menus with their friends for a wider reach and increased brand awareness.

4. Create a Loyalty Program

Many restaurateurs make the mistake of focusing on attracting new customers rather than keeping their existing customers. This can leave a huge dent on your sales as your most loyal customers begin to feel disoriented and start thinking twice about returning to your restaurant.

One of the most effective ways of retaining customers is building a loyalty program. It doesn’t have to be complicated. You can start by issuing gift cards, free dessert, or special discounts to your most loyal customers. By doing so, it won’t be long before you notice an improvement in operations.

5. Offer Online Ordering

Although eating out in a physical establishment is still fun and exciting, things are changing and more people now prefer to order their food online. With this in mind, you should change with the times and offer online ordering. This will not only improve your operations and increase your sales but also retain your customers. Your clientele will have no reason to buy food elsewhere.

6. Adequately Train Employees

If you want to improve operations in your restaurant, it is imperative that you employ staff with the right training. Look for employees who have the right mix of skills and knowledge to avoid spending more money on cross-training. You can also consider providing custom training to your staff to ensure they are competent to handle your specific requirements.

7. Turn Your Customers into Promoters

Your loyal customers are certainly your biggest fans, and they would be more than willing to promote your restaurant to their family, friends, and workmates. However, for this to work, you have to make sure that you prepare tasty, lip-smacking meals every time to ensure your new and existing customers keep coming back for more!

8. Consider Outsourcing

In some cases, your current staff may not be able to handle some aspects of a restaurant business. This is the point where outsourcing comes into play. You should consider hiring experts to help set up the right structures and provide suggestions aimed at improving your operations.

9. Leverage Analytics and Trends

Utilize various reporting and analysis tools to monitor current market trends and know what is happening in your restaurant. Leveraging on analytics and trends will give you an idea of whether you are on the right path to success or not. You can then make the necessary adjustments like employing more staff or scheduling the right software to improve sales.

10. Cross-Train Employees

Cross-training your employees prepares them to be able to do more than one job. For instance, you can cross-train your waiters to be kitchen staff or vice versa. This means your operations will not stall in case one of your most reliable staff is sick or away on leave. However, you should only consider cross-training your most loyal staff to avoid disappointments when they decide to seek employment elsewhere.

Streamline Your Business to Make it More Efficient

StrategyDriven Managing Your Business ArticleNo matter how well you set up your business, there are always opportunities for you to improve the way you do things. After a little while, as your business starts to grow, and you begin to add more staff, you may need to think about changing the way your business works. To do this, you need to think about streamlining the processes and the way that you will deal with customers and clients. Here are some ideas to get started.

Review Your Procedures

Before you start embarking on any type of streamlining mission, you need to think about what you need to do, and the areas in particular that require work. To do this, you need to look at your procedures and the way you are dealing with customers and staff. Set up a team to review everything within your company, and see if there is any way that they can make the procedures more efficient. It is important that this team looks at all areas of your company. That way, they will be able to help you save more time and money in the long run.

Involve the Staff

Whenever there is the talk of streamlining within a business, staff always start to become very upset and worried about their future. To allay their fears, it is essential that you involve them from the beginning. Set out in detail what you want to achieve and include them in the process as well. Ask them if there’s anything about the role that they can do more efficiently. If there is, perhaps you could also give them an incentive to come up with a better solution. You can even make it a competition with the winner receiving a prize.

Dealing with Customers

Customers are the life force of your company; without them, you would not be able to run your business. It means that any way which you can make the processing of your products easier will be better for your customers and will encourage them to shop more often with you. To achieve this, why not think about adding an online store to your website and making customer service easier to contact.

Dealing with Clients

In the past, you may have dealt with clients by visiting them in person. This used to be the best and most effective way of dealing with clients and encouraging new contracts. However, there are now many other ways to do this efficiently. For example, you can find the best free conference call online that can allow you to speak face to face with your clients or via a telephone link. Doing so will save you a lot of time traveling and will also reduce your expenses by quite a substantial amount.
By looking at what you are already doing and by involving your workers, you can achieve a more streamlined and efficient company. This will enable you to compete against your competitors and build a company that will grow into the future.

How You Can Save Your Business Money by Cutting Down on Paper

StrategyDriven Tactical Execution ArticleIt may have escaped your notice, but UK businesses are gradually changing how they deal with the paper trail. Offices around the nation are looking at ways to reduce the need for paper mills to order pulp (which makes paper) that comes from the cutting of small trees and the remnants of harvesting larger ones. This way, forestry across the UK stays where it is, which looks more appealing and helps clean the air across the country too.

Here are a few ways that your business can reconsider how it manages its paper use and what options there might be.

Intentionally Going Thinner and Lighter

Just like with our waistlines, aiming for a lighter, thinner version is a good choice when it comes to paper usage in the office. It needs the cooperation of the office manager who handles paper orders from the photocopier right down to the little notepads to pull it off. Cutting down the environmental impact from your business’ paper use is as easy as cutting down the paper stock thickness to use less volume.

It’s also worth noting that paper which comes with a special coating over it, or has been treated to be reflective, also uses different types of thicker paper to achieve this result. The greater use of this kind of paper product is impactful too.

Lower Storage Costs for Paper Files

With the use of thinner paper stock, paper files that are necessary for businesses to keep on-hand are thinner. With each page being a lower GSM stock (as recommended above), files get thinner overall. Fewer metal storage cabinets are needed, and you need less space to store them and access them too. A filing clerk is no longer needed either when there’s fewer files to manage.

Think Before Printing Out

Pausing to consider whether a printout really needs to be produced is a great way to reduce paper usage. The mindless printing of multiple copies of a seldom accessed paper version is not helpful to reduce paper usage or the costs of it. Where copies are needed, consider printing on both sides and train staff on how to set up their software and printer to achieve this result. Alternatively, the company could look at tablets for teams to use and access digital versions of reports for reference purposes.

Paper copies fade over time and are a poor way to keep records in the wake of the complete digitisation of software. Set standards for employees where staff are rewarded for reducing paper usage, which cuts the environmental impact and office costs.

Fewer Photocopies

Taking fewer photocopies is another way to reduce costs both in paper usage and maintenance expenses for the photocopier machine. Distracting staff by having to monitor repair staff when they have to attend to fix a copier machine is a time suck. The greater the use of the photocopier, the more often it’s likely to run into trouble too.

There are always more ways to cut down on paper usage to save money. You can a look at the GoCanvas.com website to learn more about how much paper usage is costing your company and how you can set up your business to operate more efficiently and less expensively.

Going digital saves businesses money in many areas. They are no longer reliant on a paper trail for most activities and the company operates more smoothly as a result. It’s also easier to look up key information online when necessary because putting hands on the paper file is no longer needed.