What is a Restaurant Checklist Standard Operating Procedure?
Restaurant checklists standard operating procedures are written rules on how each task is supposed to be accomplished. The procedures encompass everything from the preparation of the food to the customer service you provide the guests.
The checklist ensures that nothing is overlooked and that quality is maintained throughout. With an SOP in place, each employee knows what is expected of them. It is also easy to determine whose responsibility it is when something wrong happens.
In other words, a restaurant operation checklist is a glue that holds excellent food preparation, exceptional customer service, and asset management together.
In this article, we will talk about the following points:
6 Benefits of Having a Restaurant SOP
1. Simplifies Regulatory Compliance
Create a restaurant operation checklist that aligns with the local food and health regulations to ensure that you comply with all legal requirements. Completed standard operating procedures checklists show precautionary food preparation, customer service, facility maintenance, and cleanliness. Having an SOP also makes it easier to make improvements and perform a self-audit.
2. Streamlines Employee Onboarding
Having a restaurant operation checklist in place creates a smooth and enjoyable employee onboarding process. It is also easier to train and transition employees because everyone is aware of their expectations. It saves everyone time thinking about what to do next or what steps to fulfill a task.
Restaurant SOPs also leave no room for misinterpretation because everything is set on paper. Instead, management can use the information in the SOP checklist to train new hires. It also ensures that tactical knowledge is not lost when an employee leaves the company.
3. Enhances Employee Communication
It is vital to standardize real-time communication channels. When you combine digital restaurant checklists with the functionality of instant messaging, constant communication between employees and management is easy. It is also easier to inform management when confusion arises over updated protocols.
4. Improves Customer Service
Enforcing restaurant standard operating processes standardize services in every aspect of the business. No matter how big your establishment is, customers get to experience excellent service and food. More so, your patrons already know what to expect every time they go to your restaurant.
5. Optimize recurring Processes
With restaurant checklists standard operating procedures in place, management can recall various operating systems vital to running restaurants. By optimizing recurring processes, such as logging the calibration of thermometers and conducting safety audits, you are confident that they are completed in the same way all the time. It gives management peace of mind knowing that all essential details are completed to the dot.
6. Guarantees Cleanliness and Good Hygiene
Cleanliness and hygiene are two essential elements of a restaurant business. Food preparation should follow a strict sanitary process to reduce the risk of contamination. A restaurant operation checklist ensures that all staff is practicing excellent personal hygiene.
5 Types of Restaurant Operating Procedures
Restaurants or food services businesses have a specific set of standard operating procedures for each department.
1. Staff and Personal Hygiene
Restaurant staff must be looking their best. That means their uniforms should be immaculate looking — no stains, without creases. SOPs under this category ensure that all the staff maintains good personal hygiene and safety practices to keep the safety and quality of food in high condition. It includes:
- How to wash hands properly
- Health and personal hygiene of all employees
- How to use gloves and utensils
- What to do when an employee contacts blood
2. Food Flow
Your kitchen operations are one of the foundations of your food business. Making sure that everything goes well in your kitchen significantly impacts the overall operations of your restaurant.
The standard operating procedures under this ensures that food is consistently handled safely. It includes:
- Classic recipes and food preparation
- Food presentation
- Holding and reheating food
- Purchasing food from third party producers
- Food storage
- Food recycling and food waste handling
- Food donations
3. Customer Service
As much as food handling and preparation are essential, how you treat your customers is a vital aspect of the success of your restaurant. Having a guideline on how to serve your customers will impact your sales and customer retention. Some of the things included in this category are:
- Greeting and seating
- Order taking and serving
- Food delivery
- Billing and final settlement
- Managing customer complaint
4. Facility and Equipment
There should also be a separate guideline on how your staff should use kitchen equipment. Furthermore, it would help if you had different instruction modules on using personal equipment like ovens and microwaves. It also includes handling the restaurant’s physical assets like:
- Ice machine cleaning
- Laundry and linens
- Sanitation of the dining area
- Pest control
Safety is the most important aspect of your restaurant. It ensures that your people won’t be at risk while they are preparing and delivering food. Statistics show that 15 percent of work accidents in the restaurant happen because of carelessness and mismanagement.
The standard operating procedures under this category also include how to handle emergencies, such as fire.
Use a digital solution for your restaurant operating procedure
Running a restaurant involves a lot of work. Using standard operating procedures for restaurant checklists saves time and person-hours and improves reliability. Especially in a restaurant environment, paper documents are impractical because they can quickly get dirty and lost.
Use Lumiform’s mobile app and desktop software to ensure you achieve and maintain high quality and safety standards in your daily restaurant operations. Digital checklist templates from Lumiform have the advantage that they can be easily filled out via a smartphone or tablet. After the check is completed, all data is immediately stored in the cloud. So, they are safe and can be accessed at any time, regardless of location, by all employees.
- Download ready-to-use digital restaurant checklists from the Lumiform template library, or convert your existing paper checklist to our digital format.
- You can also create templates from scratch with our flexible form builder using drag-and-drop.
- Run restaurant inspections via the App on your cell phone or tablet anytime, anywhere, even when you’re offline.
- Send and receive notifications for scheduled restaurant inspections.
- Automatically generate comprehensive reports after each inspection and share them immediately with other employees.
- Use powerful data analytics to help you gain new insights into what’s going well in the restaurant and what areas need improvement.
- Unlimited cloud storage to ensure your inspection data is safe, organized, and protected.