Category: Commentary

A website for food service directors has a feature on preparing paperwork correctly for a food safety program. The writer covers Virginia Tech, which recently hired a second person to handle its Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HAACP) program. One task is to make sure the food staff keeps detailed logs about when the food was delivered to when it was eaten. The VT group keeps this information for two months in case a student delays telling the school she got sick after eating at its facility.

Key Takeaways:

  • It is important to take note of all foods consumed over a time period in case of illness or outbreak.
  • Employees who work in food service need to take basic food safety classes so that they are prepared within their job.
  • The structures of food safety and handling are always changing and modifying to provide the best service experiences.

“It’s important to assess the structure of a food safety program—and to know what’s required, and what’s just good to have on hand.”

Read more: http://www.foodservicedirector.com/managing-your-business/ensuring-food-safety/articles/planning-food-safety-paperwork

Commentary

If you are having an event of some kind you may be wondering about baked goods. They are delicious and people really seem to like them a lot. But what kind should you offer? What will people like vs. what will they pass up? If you are looking to sell baked goods or just offering them at a party or gathering of some type then you should focus on indulgent ingredients. Thinks like fudge, dark chocolate, red velvet. Things that stand out.

Key Takeaways:

  • Nation’s Restaurant News has a feature, Ask The Artisan, sponsored by Dawn Foods, designed to answer baking questions.
  • One tip offered by Ask The Artisan was the fact that many baked good snacks are eaten on the go.
  • For this reason, it’s a good idea to create and sell baked goods that are highly portable.

“Research shows indulgence is the leading motivator for purchasing snacks so consider rich ingredients and flavors, such as a red velvet cupcake or fudge brownie”

Read more: http://www.nrn.com/ask-artisan/what-types-baked-snacks-should-we-offer

Commentary

A website for food service directors has a piece on performance reviews. The account records two opinions on this practice. One director feels the annual performance session is out of style. He prefers to have short meetings with employees on a regular basis. In addition, he will talk to the group on occasion. Another director feels the practice is still useful. He feels the review need not be one sided, and invites the employee to give his or her feedback.

Key Takeaways:

  • Most workers and supervisors consider yearly evaluations to be outdated
  • Regular performance evaluations add more value than once a year evaluations and can be useful to set achievable timelines for goals
  • The review should be a back-and-forth that allows both the employee to talk about their accomplishments and to critique the supervisor

“In the hectic pace of a dining environment, taking time to sit down one-on-one for a designated review requires real planning, but is still valuable, says Tom Driscoll, associate director for housing and director of food services for the University of Oregon in Eugene.”

Read more: http://www.foodservicedirector.com/managing-your-business/managing-staff/articles/reduce-performance-review-anxiety

Commentary

According to the National Restaurant Association, middle-class job growth in the restaurant industry has increased nearly four times stronger than the U.S. economy as a whole. Specifically, restaurant jobs grew 25 percent from March 2010 through February 2017. Currently, the restaurant industry is leading in both total job growth and middle class job growth.

Because of the need for scheduling flexibility in the restaurant world, the majority of restaurant employees are part-time. Only about 44 percent of restaurant employees work full-time/full-year schedules. Yet, from 2010 through 2015, restaurants added 5.4 percent of all middle class jobs in the U.S.

Key Takeaways:

  • The Bureau of Labor Statistics, which monitors US employment numbers, suggest that the most recent employment recovery of the US economy began around March 2010, proceeding until about February 2017.
  • In the half-decade between 2010 and 2015, it was noted that jobs, featuring total annual incomes between $45,000 and $74,999, in the restaurant sector, boomeranged by almost 50%.
  • Interestingly, due to the nature of the business, less than half of those employed in the restaurant sector, are full time employees.

“Not only are restaurants among the leaders in total job growth, they are also adding middle class jobs at a much stronger rate than the overall economy.”

Read more: https://www.restaurantnewsresource.com/article94029.html

Commentary

The restaurant industry is struggling first quarter in the economy. While March was a upswing in sales for the industry it still was quite lacking. Sales performances have been dropping year after year and they were down eleven of the last twelve months. This is a scary trend for many. There is so much competition out there and traffic has been down over 3% this quarter. Summer is a bit of a up tick so there is still hope but the trend overall continues.

Key Takeaways:

  • Restaurant sales are still down in march despite an increase in sales from the previous month
  • Staffing for restaurants proves to be a huge hurdle for all owners.
  • The economy in 2017 is improving and the restaurant business is following along that trend

“March did represent an improvement versus the prior month. Although still negative, sales improved by 2.5 percentage points compared to February.”

Read more: http://www.nrn.com/sales-trends/q1-restaurant-sales-performance-disappoints-despite-march-improvements

Commentary

An on site bakery faces unique challenges in operations management. Complicated equipment, recipe management, and inventory spoilage make it hard for bakeries to control costs. There are several things bakeries can do to make operations management less of a headache. Consistency is the key to maintaining recipes and inventory. Teamwork is also critical between teams as bakeries do not require all staff to be present during the entire production process. Lastly, controlling the environment is extremely important and proper investment in heating and cooling systems is necessary.

Key Takeaways:

  • One bakery found that products intended for a specific customer, a school, was attracting outside interest and needed to find a way to fill these needs.
  • Oftentimes recipes and procedures may need to be adjusted due to climate changes, or customer preferences.
  • Team workers should be prepared to handle all functions, including cooking, prepping and delivery work.

“Though kitchens in general can be a minefield of issues, bakeries present some unique challenges thanks in part to the finicky nature of yeast.”

Read more: http://www.foodservicedirector.com/managing-your-business/generating-revenue/articles/challenges-of-opening-site-bakery

Commentary

This is a guide to help executives who are looking to hire an administrative assistant. The role is comiplex and important, so great care must be taken to select the best candidate. An administrative assistant should be able to multi-task and handle various sources of stress. An ideal candidate is also someone with a passion for the organization and someone you can count on. Conversely, poor people skills, too much socializing and inability to handle stress are all warning signs.

Key Takeaways:

  • A good administrative assistant should be able to multitask and to organize and prioritize assignments.
  • You want assistants who can be gracious and sociable, who are good observers, but not over-sharers.
  • A great administrative assistant will have a barrage of problems and a host of people to deal with daily and must be able to be cool under pressure.

“When it comes to staffing, no one person can make or break your day more than the administrative assistant.”

Read more: http://www.foodservicedirector.com/managing-your-business/managing-staff/articles/3-qualities-red-flags-look-in-administrative

Commentary

A website covering the hospitality industry has a feature about sugar art. Sugar art consists of decorative centerpieces made entirely of sugar. The feature included an interview with a pastry chef who was a judge in a 2017 sugar art competition. The chef made the statement that one has to know sugar art to be a true pastry chef. He said that sugar and/or chocolate artwork is needed at buffets or large events in order to show off a theme.

Key Takeaways:

  • Martin Chiffers, pastry chef and formerly president of the International Pastry Team Uk, recently judged the UK Sugar Championships.
  • Strong contenders in the competition showed shiny, reflective sugar, with good color and style.
  • Creating sugar and chocolate sculptures is less about creating edible items than it is about making art.

“I don’t think you can call yourself a pastry chef if you can’t do at least some sugar and some chocolate work.”

Read more: http://www.bighospitality.co.uk/Business/Martin-Chiffers-on-why-pastry-chefs-must-do-sugar-art-championships

Commentary

A website for food service directors has a feature on how to make it easier for employees when a food service operation undergoes changes. The feature focused on Western Michigan University, which opened a new facility for dining. The account showed what the director did to make the staff comfortable. First, he showed computer simulations to the staff so they could see what was going to happen. He worked with the union to rewrite job descriptions. And he invited the staff to cook a meal for themselves and the family to increase morale.

Key Takeaways:

  • Help staff to adjust to new features, buildings, by showing videos, models of the proposed changes before they occur.
  • Bring in small groups of staff to watch the ongoing construction, to acclimate them further, in anticipation of the new feature, building.
  • Keep staff posted via emails, regarding the new project’s progress and also what their new duties could include.

“Some people gravitate toward change, some are slow to come around and others do whatever they can to completely avoid it.”

Read more: http://www.foodservicedirector.com/managing-your-business/managing-staff/articles/5-tips-retaining-staff-during-transition

Commentary

The days of fast food and on the go meals is still evolving. While many prefer a hot meal they may also crave the flavors of a meal that is home cooked. More and more companies are starting to listen to consumers with very busy lives and are stepping up to the task. Fresh not frozen meals on the go are fast becoming a meal of choice for these busy millennials and others living in the 21st century.

Key Takeaways:

  • A cooking class for diabetics at Abrazo Community Health Network in Phoenix instructed members about solid supper prep, as well as prodded the dispatch of a readied nourishment program called Meals To
  • They needed crisp, not solidified. What’s more, they needed suppers to fulfill the yearning for good antiquated home-cooked dinners.”
  • Regardless of whether it’s a requirement for sound choices for clinic patients and guests, or an advantageous route for occupied workers to get supper at their organization bistro, arranged to-go dinn

“Whether it’s a need for healthy options for hospital patients and visitors, or a convenient way for busy employees to grab dinner at their company cafe, prepared to-go meals are a growing segment.”

Read more: http://www.foodservicedirector.com/menu-development/menu-strategies/articles/prepared-meals-start-new-era-of-grab-go

Commentary