Restaurant Reopening: How to Increase Trust so Consumers Return

Bob Gibson Bob Gibson Jolt Chief Revenue Officer

Restaurants are reopening or will be reopening their doors soon. Restaurant owners and management are doing their best to prepare dining spaces to comply with new laws and regulations. But how do you reassure customers that your restaurant space is safe and gain their trust so they keep coming back? This is done through trust, transparency, and technology. 

Trust, Transparency, and Technology

The best way for restaurants to build consumer trust is by being transparent and showing that they are taking steps to make the dining experience safe. The most effective way to demonstrate that transparency and safety is through technology. Don’t believe us? Here’s what the experts are saying. 

Al Paris, restaurant innovator and restaurateur, stated that, “Safety is the new hospitality. We are experts in creating memorable guest experiences; now we’ll need to demonstrate that we can create a safe experience for guests as well as a safe working environment for team members.” 

Robert Irvine, talk show host and chef for Food Network, put it simply, “Trust, transparency, and technology will be required to get customers back.”

How technology can help 

Technology has the ability to showcase what you are doing in real time to your customers and provide accountability to create safer environments. There are many ways technology can help, but here are 4 that we recommend. 

1. Digital Checklists

Digital checklists help to increase accountability with your team. Have you ever seen a paper checklist that was clearly pencil whipped and marked as complete with an illegible signature next to each task? With digital checklists, you know the exact what, when, who, and how behind every task because each task is verified with logins and timestamps. Digital also provides: 

  • QR-codes for location verification like a code on the dumpster so your employees have to physically visit the dumpster to mark off the task.
  • Photo-verification of each task’s completion proving, for example, that the bathroom has been cleaned and sanitized. 
  • Text or email notifications sent directly to managers when tasks aren’t completed within a defined timeframe.

2. Digital Dashboards

Digital dashboards prominently displayed on your restaurant floor or to your drive-thru line can clearly indicate the exact time high-touch surfaces were last sanitized and cleaned in real-time. Monitors or tablets can also display back-of-house operations and safe food preparations. You can even indicate new cleaning procedures and protocols at your restaurant. 

Screen Shot 2020-06-24 at 3.08.09 PMJolt’s digital dashboard (shown here) can be customized to display what you want customers to know about your store. 

One of the biggest advantages of digital dashboards is that you can set limits to always be putting your best foot forward. For instance, if a counter area isn’t sanitized on time you can display other information in its place until the task is completed. Meanwhile, notifications are being sent to staff and management so they can address the issue. 

 

3. Wellness Checks

Digital can also reassure customers that all employees are healthy. You can display wellness checks on digital dashboards and even on social media. Here is a quick list of of things to review with your employees at the start of every shift:

  • Wearing Mask
  • Wearing Gloves
  • Symptom Free
  • No Contact With COVID-19 Positive Individuals in Last 30 Days
  • Temperature Check

4. Menu Changes

Our last recommendation is to go contactless with digital menus. Consider using scannable QR codes at each table or make QR codes accessible while waiting in line to give customers access to your current menu offerings. If you decide to use physical menus, laminate them and set up a checklist reminder to sanitize them after each table turnover. 

Moving Forward

Reopening your restaurant can seem like a daunting task with all of the new rules, regulations, and procedures. On top of that restaurant owners have to worry about creating a safe experience that will leave customers and employees wanting to come back. Technology can play a big role in helping stores be flexible to meet the new demands, showcase your efforts, and put your best foot forward. 

Want to learn more about technology solutions?  Talk with a Jolt restaurant expert. 

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