Business Tip – The Costs Not to Cut at Your Restaurant!
Regardless of what sort of business you’re in, everything comes down to the bottom line.
For most business owners, there are two things to think about: how to increase revenue and if spending can be reduced. The hospitality industry is no different to any other, and as a restauranteur, you may be wondering if there’s any more profit you can squeeze from your business.
But in an industry where success is reliant on a high-quality product, there are certain areas to avoid such frugality. Here’s a look at where you should absolutely avoid cutting the costs.
A huge part of a successful restaurant is creating an exceptional customer experience, and that is reliant in no small part on the quality of your staff. Staff salaries represent one of the biggest overheads for a restaurant, but you shouldn’t give in to the temptation of cutting into your staff budget.
In an industry where customer service is paramount, your patrons are just as likely to remember good or bad service as they are the food. Low-cost staff tends to be inexperienced, underqualified, under committed and demotivated, and that will show in the quality of your end product and leave a legacy of unhappy customers.
Portion Size & Ingredients
Your customer base is vigilant, savvy and demanding in equal measure, so you’d be mistaken if you thought a sneaky cut back on portion size or the quality of ingredients would go unnoticed.
The quantity and quality of ingredients per dish is one of the first areas a lot of restaurants look to cut back on when attempting to reduce spending, but you should avoid following the same path.
Do not underestimate your customer’s ability to note changes, regardless of how creative or shrewd those changes are. Your regular clientele will notice, new customers won’t be impressed, and neither are likely to come again in a hyper-competitive market.
If you feel like you’ve got the right catering equipment in place and a well fitted-out dining room, you might decide you can get away with skimping on maintenance, but again; you’d be wrong.
Whether it’s dodgy equipment in the back producing suspect food, or chipped tables, worn carpets and poorly maintained toilets creating an air of disrepair out front, it all contributes to your customers being royally unimpressed with your operation.
As we all know, time equals money, and the cliché reigns truer than ever in the restaurant business.
Closing your doors an hour earlier on the evening might seem a good way to save on staff costs and utilities, but you’ll miss out on a chunk of custom annoy your late arrivals who remembered you used to shut later.
Likewise, don’t try and create a production line in the restaurant by rushing your diners in busy periods. You might think you’re being subtle and potentially freeing up a table for another group of spenders, but attempts to get rid of customers rarely go unnoticed.
It all comes back to customer experience, which you’ll be damaging by tightening time on your diners.
So, if you’re thinking about where to cut corners on your restaurant spending, just remember that the final product is everything. That product is your service, your food and the overall atmosphere of your establishment. If your cuts potentially affect any of these areas, it’s almost certainly best to leave things well alone.