Happy staff means happy customers How to Train Restaurant Staff

7 mins read

Restaurant staff aren’t only the face of your business, they’re the nuts, bolts – and everything in between. 

But how can you ensure your restaurant staff deliver the best service possible?

It’s simple.

Effective restaurant training and ongoing employee development helps you retain employees, improve your team’s performance, and encourage your colleagues to love their roles. 

So, here’s a simple guide to help you train your restaurant staff in eight easy steps. And remember, the age-old customer service saying is as true as ever: happy staff means happy customers. 

1) Create Your Training Plan

Your business has its own way of doing things.  So, look at the values and systems that are distinct to your restaurant and use them as the basis for your restaurant staff training plan.

Creating training resources and unique, branded employee handbooks help you get your staff up to speed quickly. Build your own training inventory, courses, and quizzes using simple online training platforms like Tayl.

2) Orientation

This is your chance to make a great impression on your new start, and a great opportunity to kickstart your training process. Typical orientation shifts include a tour of the premises, a brief overview of the business history, and an introduction to key team members. Use this time to discuss any uniform requirements, clocking in and clocking out processes, and shift patterns. 

Start your restaurant staff training journey right, and the rest will follow. 

3) Shadow Shifts

Before you let your new restaurant staff loose to cause havoc, why not get them in for a few shadow shifts with experienced members of the team? This provides an opportunity for your new starts to learn the ropes without any major responsibility. Learning through doing is highly effective, and it’s also a chance for new staff to meet the rest of the team.

But remember, your new hires might feel pretty nervous during those very first shifts. Try not to overload them with too much information all at once. Ask any training staff to break systems down clearly and simply.

Finally, take this time to give your staff experience trying out other roles. Hired a new bartender? Chuck them on the floor for a few hours, so they get a sense of your process from start to finish. Training a new server? Let them try their hand at hosting, so they can understand the booking system. 

The better everyone understands the bigger picture, the better your service is likely to run.
 

4) Food & Drink Tasting

We all love a good wine tasting – and bringing in newbies is a great time to organise a team-wide menu tasting. Training restaurant staff includes ensuring they’re fully versed in your products, which allows them to make recommendations and upsell confidently. 

Plus, there’s no better team building exercise than sitting around a table with delicious food and great drinks! 

5) Health & Safety

There’s no getting away from just how vital restaurant health and safety training is. From allergens to hygiene, ensuring new restaurant staff are up to date with all current regulations is non-negotiable. Using an online training platform can offer a simple and affordable way to ensure your restaurant staff are following all healthy and safety guidelines. 

However, less than 3 out of 5 hospitality staff say they want more training. Thinking of interactive ways to deliver health and safety training is a great way to improve employee satisfaction. Gamification is a key learning and development trend, so why not use online training platforms to develop quizzes to test employee knowledge?
 

6) Onboarding

Onboarding and compliance is never fun. Paperwork, contract signatures, and documentation often prove time consuming. Creating a smooth, simple onboarding process can help your new staff hit the floor, bar, or kitchen as quickly as possible. 

We live in an increasingly digital world and considering the likely demographic of your staff, moving as much of your onboarding process online is important. Online training platforms can offer this feature – helping you to speed through the boring bits!
 

7) Ongoing Development

35% of hospitality staff cite a lack of career prospects as the reason they leave the industry. So,  once you have your restaurant staff trained in the basics, onboarded, and feeling at home, it’s important to establish learning and training paths, one to ones, and targets for staff looking to advance their skills. 

Not only will this result in superhero staff but promoting employees up to through managerial ranks is a great way to reduce turnover and foster that family feeling amongst your team. Curate quality online training courses and you’ll likely improve restaurant staff retention.
 

8) Team Communication

When assessing the desirability of job offers, most hospitality workers rank solid team communication highly. Restaurant work can be tiring and, at times, stressful. But having a team of friends alongside you is part of what makes the job sparkle. 

Plus, if you want your customers to enjoy that perfect buzzy atmosphere when they eat out at your restaurant, then fostering chemistry amongst your staff is the best way to get there!

Encourage team communication, chat and training amongst employees. Whether it’s to request shift swaps or have the chance to ask questions, social media tools and group chats can be the best way to keep up low-key training and create team spirit. Imagine these spaces as a place for business updates, training tips, social event planning and a whole heap of silly gifs. 

Build your own online courses and create training your team loves. Try Tayl’s simple, affordable online training today.

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