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Guide to Stress-Free Restaurant Management

Why Employee Turnover Matters

A constant stream of new hires means more training and less time for the other employees to work through their daily tasks. Not only does high employee turnover cause more of a headache for you and your other employees, but it also makes it difficult for a restaurant to run smoothly. Here’s why. 


Portrait of young waitress in white blouse holding a tray


You Spend More Money 

Having to continuously hire new employees means you have to spend time and money grooming and training them. Ensuring th

at they are comfortable with the standards and expectations that you set forth in your establishment, paying either their hourly wages or their salaries, investing in them as individuals. By having a high employee turnover rate, you are losing money. 


Teamwork Makes the Dream Wor

Your restaurant is a lot like a ship. You are the captain, your assistant manager or, if you’re the owner of the establishment, your manager, is the first mate. You and your first mate along with your crew members (your employees) are working together to ensure the ship is sailing smoothly. When crew members leave there is a void that needs to be filled. Hiring new crew members takes time as the hiring process isn’t always easy. When you finally settle on a new crew member you have to train them so that they are able to carry out their duties as intended. 

However, the constant influx of new crew members makes it difficult to keep ship sailing as smoothly as it once had. Veteran crew members end up picking up the slack until the new members become more accustomed to how the ship operates. This can easily snowball into chaos if one’s not careful. 

You Waste Time 

The hiring process isn’t easy. In fact, it can be time consuming and stressful on you and your other staff members. The time that you spend searching for new employees can be better used elsewhere. 


Learn more about how to decrease employee turnover in our article, “5 Tips to Reduce Employee Turnover,”

Reduce Employee Turnover

Should You Clean, Disinfect, or Sanitize?

What’s more important to do in a restaurant, clean, sanitize or disinfect?  Well, you will not be surprised to find out that it is equally important to do all three. These are words that we have been hearing a lot about recently, especially during the pandemic. There is a ton of information out there from the CDC and the Environment Protection Agency that gives you guidelines on how to keep your restaurants up to date on running safely.  It is important for your staff to know the difference between them so let’s give a quick breakdown.



Cleaning is the removal of food and soil from the surface. Any unwanted material should be cleaned before you sanitize and/or disinfect. A few examples of cleaning would be wiping down tables, seats and menus to get rid of food particles, spills, dust etc.  Dusting light fixtures or pictures on the wall  in the restaurant. Scrubbing pots and pans with soap and water. Sweeping floors. It is important to note that “cleaning” does not kill pathogens. 



Sanitizing comes after cleaning and will reduce the number of pathogens and microorganisms such as bacteria and germs on surfaces to below levels the CDC deems safe. Sanitizing also inhibits the growth of bacteria and reduces the number of germs on a surface. You should note that sanitizing is extremely important but does not kill all viruses. You will need to check the label of the sanitizers. There are sanitizers that are safe to use around food, but make sure you read the labels so you know how long to allow the sanitizer to air dry on the surface. Food prep surfaces should be sanitized continually throughout the day. Examples of food prep surfaces would be countertops and work spaces, food equipment and cutting boards. 



Disinfectants will kill bacteria and viruses on hard, non-porous surfaces. It is the most effective way to kill viruses so it is important that you regularly disinfect high-touch items after you clean them. Keys areas to disinfect would be door handles, light switches, bathroom surfaces, menus keyboards, etc.  You must remember that disinfectants should never come in direct contact with foods. Ask your supplier to provide proper training in the use of disinfectants. The EPA has released a list of approved disinfectants for use against the coronavirus. The list goes into detail but always read the label of all products. 

I know that we’ve unpacked a lot of information here, but in our next article, 5 Steps to Clean and Sanitize Your Restaurant, we will be giving you a 5-step process on how you and your employees should clean and sanitize your restaurant to maximize both customer and employee health and safety. 

Gamification: You're Crazy Not to Do It

Struggling with employee motivation and accountability? Finding it difficult to engage your employees while they’re at work? If you answered yes to either of these questions, then it sounds like gamification is right for you! 

Gamification is a hot topic in the workplace. With 70% of the U.S. workforce currently labeling themselves as actively disengaged from work. Imagine forcing yourself to go to work at a place where you don’t really enjoy yourself. It’s a chore just getting yourself dressed for the day. Now imagine that compounded by an indefinite amount of days which will eventually roll over to months only to then become years. This sounds excruciating. 

Now, what if you had the power to change all of that for your employees? What if you were able to make work more enjoyable, so much so that they actually want to come to work? Gamification can help you help your employees. Let’s dive into the specifics of how. 

 Data shows that 65% of American adults play video games, 79% of American adults feel that games provide mental stimulation, and lastly, 78% feel that games provide relaxation and stress relief. What if you had the ability to tap into this amazing power that video games seem to hold over adults? Well, gamification allows you to do just that! 

By using gamification, you are able to help improve employee engagement through regular recognition, competition, and rewards. Not only will your employee engagement skyrocket, but you will boost morale. This makes the work environment more positive, productive, and enjoyable. 

It increases productivity because you are integrating the use of technology with the workplace. Whereas previously, technology was considered taboo. Banned even. Because using technology while at work can decrease productivity, right? Wrong! Not when used the right way! Younger employees have likely grown up around technology. They have been exposed a lot longer than the more seasoned employees. Therefore, their familiarity with it becomes second-nature to them. Use this to your advantage! 

Through recognition and praise for being consistent with log and checklist taking, combined with some sort of reward system, you’ll have a motivated, confident crew of employees! To read more about gamification, check out our other article! 

The Stress-Free Restaurant Solution

Do you find yourself struggling with managing a restaurant? Worrying about the daily operations and whether they’re being completed to your expectations? What if I told you that there was a solution to all of your problems? 

This solution consists of a digital platform. Using a digital platform will not only save you time, but it will ensure that all of your employees are held accountable for their work. It also gives you peace of mind, that visibility into your store(s) that you need. 

With a digital reporting solution such as FreshCheq, no longer will you have to spend time worrying about whether things are getting done. If there was a failed item or log, no need to worry about whether a corrective action was done. You will be able to track when and if a corrective action was taken, to ensure that it doesn’t happen again. 

Accountability is important, especially when in charge of preparing and serving food. No one wants to end up in the news as that restaurant that gave people some sort of foodborne illness. By using a digital solution, not only will you have the ability to ensure the highest of food safety compliance standards, but you will find comfort in knowing that your employees are doing what they’re supposed to be doing. 

Handsome manager posing with some chefs and waitress in a kitchen

Visibility is just as important as accountability. Are your store processes getting done? Even if you’re not physically present? If you’re not using some sort of digital reporting application, you can’t really give a confident, resounding yes to that question. Digital reporting applications such as FreshCheq give you the ability to be in two places at once. Even if you’re not scheduled to work on a Friday night, you can log into the application and monitor your employees’ productivity on log and checklist completion. Giving you that peace of mind you needed in order to relax and enjoy your night off. 


In short, a digital safety and reporting platform is the only stress-free restaurant management solution that you need in order to ensure food safety compliance. 

What You Need to Know About Health Inspections

You just survived your rush hour. Business was booming. Your customers were happy and employees were having fun while they worked. You consider it a great success. Although you just had a successful shift, the place is a disaster. The bathrooms are a wreck, the make table is a mess, and both the walk-in refrigerator and freezer have been open more than closed to keep up with the demand, raising the core temperatures of both. Just when you start to catch your breath and begin to pick up after the rush, the health inspector strolls through your front door. Now what?


It’s no secret that the health inspector is the most feared person by those in the restaurant industry. This person possesses the power to either bolster your reputation or decimate it. A health inspection can be stressful, but they are a necessary part of ensuring a safe environment for employees and customers. Let’s talk about what is involved in a health inspection and a few of the things they are looking for.


  • Pests: Don’t fall behind in scheduling preventive maintenance of pests. This accounts for 20% of your overall health inspection score!
  • Cross Contamination: bacteria from raw meat can be left on surfaces and utensils if they are not properly cleaned and sanitized. Also, make sure that food is properly stored and labeled. Meat should also be thawed properly so that it is safe to prepare and serve. 
  • Handwashing: Ensure that employees are washing their hands before and after preparing food, using the bathroom, etc. Also, keeping the bathrooms fully stocked with soap and paper towels is important. 
  1. Temperature: Make sure that your thermometers are working properly and ensure that your foods are not in the danger zone, preventing bacteria growth. 

Luckily, if you get bad marks for minor violations you will get a chance to fix them. Hopefully, next time the health inspector won’t show up right after rush hour. But, if they do, make sure what you can control is perfect! 

Pests and Health Inspections Gone Wrong

Creepy crawlies, rats, mice, and ants are all things that would deter potential customers from your restaurant. No one wants to walk into a restaurant and see bugs crawling or flying around, especially when they are trying to relax and enjoy their meals. Not only do these pests contaminate food and food surfaces, but they can ruin your reputation and cost you money all at the same time.  

Mid section of waiter cleaning bar counter

Pest control should always be at the top of mind as they are a year round threat. It’s best to do pest prevention then have to deal with pest invasion. It won’t cost you nearly as much money to prevent an infestation as you might end up spending if dealing with an actual infestation. Not only does pest prevention save you time and money, but it can also set you up for success when it comes to your health inspection.

Approximately 20% of your health inspection score derives from the pest control portion, which is a large portion of your entire score. Failing your health inspection could cause a loss of business, fines, and possible illnesses to your customers. 

Not only are pests disgusting, but once customers find out about them, it is unlikely that they will return to your establishment. They are also likely to spread the news about your pest infestation, which will scare off potential customers. This loss of business could ultimately affect your business’ livelihood. 

Pest control is vital to the success of your business and should be taken seriously. It is a year long threat, therefore, it should always be at the forefront of your mind when it comes to restaurant cleanliness -- especially when preparing for an upcoming health inspection. To learn more about pest control, check out our article, 5 Top Spots that Attract Pests in Restaurants”.

Digital Logs: The Hype Behind Them

You switch on the light in your office, revealing a desk overflowing with unorganized stacks of papers. Some are grease-stained from the previous work day. You slump into your seat, wishing you could do something about this mess that looms in front of you. 


Then an idea pops into your head. 


Why continue working with paper when you can take your business digital? Not only will it help clear away some of the clutter on your desk, but it will save you time and money in the long run. 

We are finding that many restaurant owners and managers across the country are discovering that the practice of using pen and paper just isn’t working out for them anymore. It causes too much of a mess and takes up too much time and space. Time that can be focused elsewhere, like on growing your business. Not only that, but it gives you peace of mind. Gone are the days where you have to worry about whether your store processes are getting done to your expectations. 

Go digital and eliminate all of the additional stress that comes with running a business. Not only will you gain much needed visibility into your business, but you will make your employees’ lives easier. Working in your business will be easier because your employees won’t have to go searching through that dirty binder for food logs and daily checklists. It’ll be available at the touch of a button. 

Feeling generous? Add incentives to log and checklist completion. Gamification encourages employees, by giving them the confidence to get the job done the way you want them to. With gamification employees are able to compete with each other for the longest log or checklist streak. Not only that, but by using gamification, you are instituting clear policies and procedures in a fun and more responsive way. So, your employees will know exactly what’s expected of them and have the confidence to execute it.

This allows you to relax, not spending another second worrying about whether or not your daily processes are being completed the way you want them to be.

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