The COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on all industries globally, not least the hospitality industry. However, while it is important to recognise the damage done to the industry, it is also the time to look forward and begin to drive faster recovery. It is the period beyond lockdown, which will shape the hospitality industry of the future.
The post-COVID world will demand many changes in the hospitality industry. In this article, we look at how you can prepare for Hospitality 2.0.
Updated health and safety techniques, policies and procedures
Cleaning and hygiene have become an essential part of running a hospitality business post-COVID-19. Now that lockdown restrictions have eased, customers and staff have health at the forefront of their minds, even before you consider new regulations around cleaning in non-healthcare settings.
You will need to review your business' cleaning and hygiene procedures and ensure that all of your staff are familiar with new processes.
New health and safety measures to think about when reopening include:
Self-service pay systems.
Orders through mobile apps.
Non-contact service and order deliveries.
Complimentary hand-sanitiser stationed at the entrances and exits.
Suspension of unnecessary work-place gatherings.
Readiness to deal with staffing reductions.
You should also closely monitor employees' health and take reasonable precautions to ensure that illness does not spread.
Optimise space for social distancing
Social distancing looks set to be around for the foreseeable future, which means that you will need to take some time to analyse your staff's operational workflows and the movement of customers and staff around your venue.
This analysis will allow you to optimise the available space and keep track of your capacity to ensure that everyone can function and spend time in the venue without breaching government social distancing guidelines.
Information for customers
Following weeks of lockdown, this is the first time many of your customers will be out in a social setting. Anxiety and nerves are possible emotions to consider. There may also be a small few customers who haven't mastered social distancing yet! For all of these reasons, it will be essential to have adequate signage and leaflets to ensure you keep them informed of how to behave inside and around your venue to comply with social distancing and hygiene regulations. It is vital to ensure that staff are well aware and can inform customers where needed.
While many businesses are looking to re-evaluate their business model, it is worth considering how you will ensure you have the right number of staff with the required skills. You may find you need more team than usual to cover the move away from counter service to table service or to cover additional cleaning duties. On the other hand, you may find that new regulations mean you need less staff than usual. It will take a while to find the right balance that works for you and your team. A flexible workforce can be hugely beneficial to hospitality businesses as you reopen. Using a bank of flexible staff can give you access to more staff when you need them and less when you don't, and ensure you have the right skill sets for your business.
If you are interested in building a flexible workforce, contact us today to see how we can support you.