COVID still looms over the restaurant industry and diner safety is a huge priority. But many employees are still nervous about the resurgence in COVID numbers. Employers that are conscious of these concerns have already begun to take such drastic measures as requiring vaccination of patrons and employees. However, this might not a feasible option for your restaurant. What else can you do to ease your restaurant staff’s fears and make them feel safe?
Keep Providing PPE
Whether restaurants require employees to wear it or let it be a choice, they should continue to provide PPE like quality masks and face shields. Even if your region has no mask mandates, make it an easily accessible resource to encourage safe practices.
Capitalize on Outdoor Spaces
If you have outdoor space available but did not winterize it last year, now is a good time to do so. Invest in outdoor heat sources and create windbreaks to make a cozy al fresco dining experience year-round. Also, consider moving side work like napkin rolling to outdoor stations when possible.
Keep Up with Guest Safety
As more people get vaccinated, many diners are letting their guard down. Continue any guest safety protocols, such as encouraging masks, adding space between tables, and eliminating physical menus. By keeping your guests safe, you reduce the amount of COVID risk facing your employees.
Don’t Neglect Back of House
With so much focus on diner and server safety in front of house, the back of house is often forgotten about. Make sure your kitchen staff has the best quality air possible by properly maintaining your HVAC system and opening windows if you can. Also, consider running exhaust hood fans pre and post-operating hours.
Rethink Your Sick Policies
While the goal is to avoid having staff call in sick altogether, employees will inevitably get the sniffles this winter. If you can, offer paid sick leave and increase the number of days. Encourage employees to stay home and get tested for COVID as a precaution if they are feeling unwell. While being short-staffed may be stressful, it’s better than being the center of a COVID outbreak.
Recruit the Best Restaurant Management
Make sure your team feels supported and management promotes a safe working environment. These protective measures, as well as the top management talent, will make your restaurant an employer of choice. Partner with the restaurant recruitersat Horizon Hospitality to build the finest restaurant team. Contact usContact Us to learn how.