How important is post-closure maintenance?

Earlier this month, pubs, bars, cafes and restaurants across the UK began welcoming customers for the first time since the lockdown began in March. However, restrictions such as limited capacities, mandatory contactless payments and protection screens make going out to eat or meeting your friends for a quick pint a very different experience. 

As lockdown continues to ease across the country, anxiety levels of the public remain relatively high. It is for this reason that you should maintain equipment and ensure hygiene remains at the forefront of your processes. Ensuring your hygiene levels remain high is more than just wiping down surfaces, it’s important that you carry out frequent deep cleans, replace or install kitchen extraction units and ensure that high levels of cleanliness are constantly met.  

In doing so, you will: 

Protect your employees

When the government stated that restaurants could begin to open again, they were clear that workers should not be forced into an unsafe workplace and that their health and safety should not be put at risk. 

As a business owner, you have a duty of care to ensure as far as reasonably practicable that your employees are not exposed to risks to their health and safety. The guidance around working safely provided by the government is that workers should receive the same level of protection to their health and safety as your customers. 

Every business within the hospitality sector, especially restaurants and pubs, will need to translate the government guidance into specific, well-managed and regulated actions in order to protect their employees. 

By carrying out post-closure cleaning and maintenance, you are providing peace of mind whilst doing everything you can to protect your employees. 

Protect your customers 

The general public’s attitude appeared split to pubs and restaurants opening again. Many people were happy, while others remained apprehensive. Some argued that these changes to the lockdown came too early, and that it would be difficult to stay safe as the hospitality industry opened up. 

It is important that you do everything you can to reassure your customers that you have their health and safety in mind always. Similarly to supporting your employees, ensuring that your customers have a good experience will allow even those who were apprehensive to rest assured that you are looking after them. 

Boost business 

Not only will having health and safety strategies in place support the health of both your employees and customers, but happy employees and customers, who feel that you are taking their health seriously, will also help your newly re-opened restaurant to flourish. 

If both customers and employees remain happy, they act as brand ambassadors, letting people know that your business is following the guidance and that you are doing everything in your power to protect anyone that enters your restaurant.

So how can you do it? 

There is a range of different ways that you can encourage customers and employees that you are taking the necessary precautions when reopening your restaurant. You may consider: 

  • Implementing a one-way system 
  • Single-use menus 
  • Offering sanitation points
  • Limiting capacity 
  • Having thorough and regular deep cleans 
  • Replacing or installing extraction units in your commercial kitchen 
  • Having a full cleaning and maintenance service 

Submitted by CK Direct

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