How to Revive Your Restaurant After a Bad Year Part 2: Hot, Fresh Food

by | 24-Oct-2022

In Part 2 of How to Revive Your Restaurant After a Bad Year, we focus on the food you’re serving to customers. To achieve exceptional customer experiences, you need to consistently serve hot, fresh food at every location, every day.


Shifting Your Focus to Food

Last week, we focused on improving accountability when resetting your restaurant to succeed in a new year.

Achieving team accountability in your stores is the first step to getting back on track. If your employees are doing the work, you can shift your focus from the staff to the food you’re serving.

Just like employee accountability, you need to concentrate on mastering the fundamentals.

With team accountability, we concentrated on clean, consistent, and fast.

When it comes to food safety, we’re optimizing for hot food, and fresh ingredients.

Hot and fresh. It’s really that simple.

If you can guarantee that your food is hot and fresh at every location, you’ll see a clear increase in revenue per store.

It’s a direct result of delivering an exceptional customer experience.


Why Digital Food Safety Is Important

Every restaurant owner wants to ensure they’re serving hot, fresh food.

Sadly, many owners don’t see the direct correlation between the food they serve and their daily food safety procedures.

Your daily food safety processes have a direct effect on the food that you serve to the customer.

If you’re only completing temperature logs half of the time (or less), it’s likely contributing to the rough year you’ve experienced.

Colored dot systems may be failing you in a similar way when it comes to freshness.

To really focus on customer experience, you’ll need to achieve those same +90% completion rates on food safety that you’ve improved for cleaning, opening, and closing lists.

Here’s how.


What’s Not Working: Paper Logs and Checklists

You have processes to ensure hot food.

You have labeling to ensure fresh food.

Yet, somehow, things are falling between the cracks.

So what’s with the poor execution on food safety?

One word — paper.

Simply put, there’s no real way to track paper logs and checklists beyond a manager following up throughout the day.

Moving your food safety processes from paper to digital will give you an instantaneous advantage when it comes to removing human error and improving efficiency.

It’s not that your processes aren’t clearly outlined. It’s just that you can’t see them.

There’s no visibility.

Just like team accountability, you need visibility to improve execution.

By moving from paper to digital food safety, employees will feel more equipped to complete their daily food safety tasks with simple, digital solutions at their fingertips.


How to Guarantee You’re Delivering Hot Food

The 7 Pillars of Restaurant Success™ keeps things simple for a reason.

Making sure you serve hot food is the first step to becoming a top-performing restaurant.

Consistently hot food is a manifestation of success with your food safety processes.

If your employees are failing to complete temperature logs, it’s not necessarily a result of poor accountability.

Let’s say temp checks were completely up to you to each day. Could you get them done using the current processes?

The more equipped employees feel to complete a task the right way, the more likely they are to do it.

That’s why digital temperature logs are such a vast improvement over paper.

Using a DFS solution like Jolt, when you probe an item, the temperature instantly pushes to the temperature log checklist.

No writing. No fibbing.

If the temperature is not within the approved range, Jolt will prompt corrective action to ensure you’re not serving undercooked food to customers.

By automating the temperature check process, Jolt removes human error from the equation, and makes it easier for employees to get temp logs done.

By equipping employees with the right tools, and getting an instant, accurate picture of your temperature logs, you’ll see a vast improvement when it comes to execution.

Most importantly, you’ll reliably serve hot food at every location.


How to Ensure You’re Serving Fresh Food

When it comes to fresh food, few do it better than Chick-fil-A.

Most Chick-fil-A’s in America use Jolt every day to accurately label their food inventory.

The reason is simple: it improves efficiency and removes human error.

Unlike day dots, Jolt digital labeling can be customized to include exactly the information you need.

That means there’s no guessing as to which Tuesday the lettuce expires.

Instead of relying on employees to figure expiration dates on the fly, they can simply tap that label on the tablet, and the correct date will be there.

This is a vast improvement over employees hand-writing labels, or adding information to day dots with a sharpie.

But it’s not just the accuracy that makes the difference with digital labeling. It’s significantly faster.

Using Jolt, you can print customized labels at 6 labels per second.

(For reference, it takes 3 seconds to write the word “tomatoes” by hand.)

When it comes to labeling, restaurant operators often see cost savings through employee time saved each day.

“I’m easily paying for the investment through cost savings,” said Sam Class, a multi-location Chick-fil-A owner, “and that’s using a conservative estimate.”

“At an average wage of $12.50 an hour, saving two hours every day in wasted time, Jolt is well worth the monthly investment.”

By moving from manual labeling to digital labeling with Jolt, restaurant owners immediately have more visibility into the freshness of their food.

Fresh food drives customer experience, and when customers get a consistent and positive experience, they tend to bring friends.


Jolt Helps You Achieve Digital Food Safety

Unlike accountability, moving from manual food safety to Digital Food Safety is a fairly swift process.

Once you have the right tools (a probe, a printer, a tablet, etc.), you simply need to train your employees, and get rolling.

If you’re still using paper checklists and temperature logs to keep track of your store, consider taking the step of adopting Jolt’s Digital Food Safety solution in your restaurant.

You’ll join thousands of top-performing stores by using a more comprehensive, accurate, and efficient DFS system.

If you’d like to see exactly how Jolt would work in your store, request a demo of Jolt here.

We’ll walk you through the 7 Pillars of Restaurant Success to see exactly how we can improve revenue per store, return on investment, and long-term growth in your stores.