MRM Restaurant Survival Guide, Part Three
By MRM Staff
For more resources, click COVID-19 Survival Guide for Restaurants and MRM Restaurant Survival Guide, Second Course.
To add resources to these guides, reach out to Modern Restaurant Management (MRM) magazine Executive Editor Barbara Castiglia at email@example.com with news.
ServSafe released two newly created training videos, ServSafe Takeout: COVID-19 Precautions and ServSafe Delivery: COVID-19 Precautions, to reinforce safe food handling during the coronavirus outbreak. In addition, to support restaurant workers on the front line, ServSafe is making its premier ServSafe Food Handler training program available without charge through April for workers to attain their certificate or refresh their knowledge.
"As restaurants are forced to change how they do business, we want to ensure safe customer experiences by extending best practices for safe food handling to takeout and delivery," said Sherman Brown, executive vice president of Training and Certification for the National Restaurant Association. "These new modules were developed to provide guidance for restaurant staff preparing the food, as well as delivery people who will deliver the packages from the restaurant to the customer."
ServSafe Takeout highlights food safety measures restaurant workers should be employing, including guidance for:
Knowing the symptoms to avoid working when sick,
How to handle food packaging, and
Delivery to guests.
ServSafe Delivery highlights food safety measures for delivery people who are out in public, including guidance on:
Safe package handling,
Good hygiene and sanitation for delivery transportation,
Transporting packaged food, and
Safe customer contact.
Both training videos and ServSafe Food Handler are offered online at ServSafe.com.
"We are proud to step up and support the industry with this needed training in a time of uncertainty," said Brown. "The ServSafe program has provided restaurants with comprehensive food safety and certification for more than 30 years and will continue to support their needs as this unprecedented national health crisis continues to challenge the industry."
Rom Krupp, founder of OneDine has been literally sleeping in his office and giving away his company’s technology for free to save as many restaurants as possible. Their technology allows a restaurant to enable curbside order, pay and delivery – with 24 hours. More than 1,500 have signed up. Watch the video above.
The company is offering Tap & Order and Tap & Pay technology free during the COVID-19 crisis. This means a restaurant can convert their parking lot into a touch free take out zone and also implement online ordering. The company can get stores up within 24 hours and they're already rolling out in:
- 350 stores in the next 72 hours from a multinational brand
- 59 locations of two brands
+ more than 1,200 requests in the past few days.
Bacardi Limited launched #RaiseYourSpirits, an initiative to support bars and restaurants debilitated by the COVID-19 shutdown by pledging $3 Million USD in financial aid and other support to help the people on the frontlines of our industry during this unimaginable time. This donation is in addition to the $1 Million USD pledged by our PATRÓN® tequila brand last week.
There are established non-profits that are providing aid quickly to those in our industry hard hit by this pandemic. Some of the organizations the company is working with include Another Round, Another Rally; CORE; the James Beard Foundation; Restaurant Workers’ Community Foundation; and Tales of the Cocktail®.
“Bacardi is a family company, and for us, business is personal. We always say that love for our brands is built in bars, and now it is our turn to show them our love,” said Mahesh Madhavan, CEO of Bacardi Limited. “We don’t have all the answers today on how best to help everywhere, but we are committed to do what we can to see our industry through this crisis. These may be the darkest of days for bars and restaurants, but I am certain that when we come out on the other side, people will emerge from isolation with a renewed zest to live life to the fullest and celebrate together with friends and family.”
In response to massive layoffs in the hospitality industry due to the COVID-19 outbreak nationwide, Chef Edward Lee, in partnership with The LEE Initiative and Maker's Mark, launched The Restaurant Workers Relief Program. This program started on Tuesday, March 17 out of the catering kitchen of Lee's restaurant, 610 Magnolia, and was able to serve over 400 individuals in the restaurant industry who had recently become unemployed.
The overwhelming response from the community inspired other chefs around the country to create similar programs, working directly with The LEE Initiative and Maker's Mark. Restaurant workers must bring in proof of recent employment (paystubs will suffice) and will receive hot meals, toiletries, cleaning supplies, diapers, formula, personal hygiene items, and more. Times, days and exact details vary between relief centers.
Most of these relief centers are funded for the next two weeks but are hoping to be able to stay open longer with donations via www.leeinitiative.org. These relief centers include:
Chef Edward Lee at 610 Magnolia
Chef Edward Lee at Succotash
Chef Jose Salazar at Mita's
Chef Nancy Silverton at Chi Spacca
Chef Paul Kahan at Big Star
Chef Edouardo Jordan at Salare
Chef Alon Shaya at Safta
Chef Greg Braxtrom at Olmsted and Nate Adler at Gertie's
Chefs Ouita Michel and Samantha Fore at Great Bagel Bakery
Chef Donald Link at Cochon
Chef Linton Hopkins at Restaurant Eugene
MustHaveMenus has taken a front-line role by providing a Coronavirus Response Kit to put real solutions in restaurants' hands.
"I've had to layoff the majority of my staff. We had upwards of 13 employees. Now it's just me," says Sean Hagler, co-owner of Smoke Berkeley BBQ in Berkeley, California. "I'm at the most-trafficked area in the city. I look down the street, and where there used to be thirty restaurants open, now there are only eight. And they're offering takeout-only. I'd be closed if I didn't have takeout."
As more stay-at-home warnings reach the public, takeout and delivery programs have become essential revenue streams for restaurants. Until now, takeout was merely an add-on business for most restaurants. Now, with only days of warning, restaurants need to make everything for takeout, complete with pickup and delivery, and promote it heavily to survive.
"MustHaveMenus has done a ton to help us out," says Hagler. "They're the only vendor — and I'm talking partners, food suppliers, marketing people — who has put out a Coronavirus Kit. All I had to do was to edit the templates they provided."
The Kit contains everything restaurants need to make the transition to a takeout business model, from detailed step-by-step guides to fully-customizable templates for takeout menus.
"We've switched our model to do curbside and delivery. Anything we can do to keep the business alive." says Mike Werlinger, co-owner of Ama's Mexican Restaurant, in Hearne, Texas. "Since we have no dining, takeout is the lifeline."
The Coronavirus Response Kit includes templates to help restaurants communicate these rapid changes. There are flyers and social posts to promote takeout offerings, and signage to instruct customers on food pick-up policies. There's also an ever-expanding collection of safety templates promoting sanitary and health-conscious practices.
"We share the pain of the restaurant industry," says Jim Williams, President of MustHaveMenus. "We'll do anything in our power to help them survive this crisis. We believe our Response Kit is making a difference by giving restaurants the tools to make the critical changes in their business practices and reassure their customers as quickly as possible."
"Now we have the opportunity to really do takeout right," says Gwen Holtsclaw, a partner at ScrubOaks Restaurant in Fayetteville, North Carolina. "We can think about presentation, add instructions. I was so thrilled when I sat down at my computer and found that MustHaveMenus had everything I needed. Right now we're beating last years' numbers thanks to takeout and gift cards. Customers have been really generous."
Fitsmallbusiness.com launched a series of articles detailing what the restaurant industry can do to stay ahead of the curve as the U.S. looks to flatten the curve.
The article titles and links can be found below:
Delivery Software Options in the Wake of COVID 19
How to Bolster Your Online Presence during the Pandemic
The Upton Group, LLC launched a new website for restaurants and small businesses impacted by government orders to shut down or go to delivery only service.
Restaurant owners and franchisees can visit www.mydeliveryinsurance.com for more information.
There are two program options available for restaurants and small businesses who are negatively impacted by government actions that requires businesses to close or limit service to delivery.
Qualified Businesses Include but not Limited to:
- Restaurants Independent or Franchise
- Grocery Stores
- Liquor Stores
- And Others
These restaurants and businesses need a specialized insurance policy.
Hired and Non-Owned Auto insurance provides third party liability coverage for the business when an employee uses their personal vehicle for business purposes such as delivering products (food, grocery etc…). The coverage sits excess of the driver's own insurance.
Multiple Program Highlights:
- Hired and Non-Owned Auto Coverage
- Short Term Policies of 3 Month or 6 Month
- Multiple Limits Available from $100,000 up to $1,500,000
- Very Low Monthly Premiums Starting as low as $1,500
- Options in all 50 States
Jason Upton, President, said: "Today restaurants and small businesses all over the country are being forced to close or limit service to pick-up and and/or delivery. The number of restaurants/businesses being impacted is growing almost daily. Our new insurance programs will bring these small business owners an option to remain open by offering delivery service.
As these restaurants/businesses do not currently offer delivery service, it is important that they partner with an insurance agency that knows the challenges and pitfalls adding this service creates to their business. The Upton Group, LLC has the experience to help businesses get a program up and running in a safe manner while proving the due diligence that is needed to only have safe delivery drivers on the roads in their community."
Upton continued: "With these services combined with the right insurance coverage restaurant owners can focus on their operations and together we will get through these challenging days.
Delivery service is not easy. I myself spent 24 years with the largest pizza delivery company in the world, with 17 of those years as a franchisee. We leverage that experience to offer exceptional risk management consulting and risk transfer practices with leading carriers in the county."
Upton concluded: "Our focus and commitment is to help impacted businesses get open or remain open by entering the delivery business and to protect everything they have worked for, which will ultimately save jobs and secure their families' futures."
Chicago-based foodservice innovation hub, Relish Works, launched a new restaurant industry support website, EAT.NEWS, dedicated to aggregating information and resources to help restaurant owners, operators and workers across North America during the COVID-19 crisis. The EAT.NEWS website provides recommendations, insights and resource guides for those in the foodservice industry, including actionable steps that restaurant owners, operators and industry workers can take in order to respond to the effects of the COVID-19 crisis. Tools from how restaurants can quickly launch new services, to finding financial support for their organizations and staff during this time can be found on the website. EAT.NEWS is updated daily.
Relish Works Managing Director, Mandy Tahvonen, said, “Our team is focused on supporting restaurants as they navigate the crisis of COVID 19. With the launch of this new site, we hope that restaurant owners and operators will be better equipped to weather the storm during this unprecedented time of change for our industry.” Also included on the website is an Inspiring Stories section where restaurateurs can find information on how other organizations in the foodservice industry are tackling issues faced from statewide mandated restaurant and bar closures. “It has been incredible to see the foodservice community come together during this time to support one another,” stated Tahvonen.
Menufy, a restaurant e-commerce provider, announced customers can now place online and mobile food orders with Google Search, Maps, and Google Assistant.
Restaurant menus will be integrated on Google platforms, enabling customers to discover local restaurants and to place pickup or delivery orders at participating locations. Customers pay through Google Pay, which accepts all major debit and credit cards in the US.
With voice-assisted ordering through Google Assistant, Android and iOS mobile users can search for local restaurants or re-order their go-to meal.
Restaurant operators can receive Google food order notifications on the Menufy console, on a personal device, by phone, or through a partner Point of Sale (POS). The Google-ready Menufy app runs on Android tablets and the following POS systems: Lightspeed, Harbortouch, Restaurant Manager, POSitouch, and Future POS.
All client restaurants have a direct relationship with Menufy and online ordering is only activated with their permission. "We respect the restaurateur's choice in deciding whether Menufy's solution is the best fit for their off-premise business," said Andy Lowder, Director of Business Development at Menufy.
Lowder added that on the customer side, "Google's food ordering platform is a helpful, easy-to-use way for people to place food orders. The unified discovery and purchase phase is a win for eaters and eateries alike."
Revention® is working to maximize operations and protect revenue for restaurateurs affected by dine-in closures due to COVID-19.
To make it fast and easy to implement, Revention is offering an Online Ordering and Delivery Starter Bundle for a reduced price of $199 per month. This includes HungerRush® online ordering that works on any device, one Revention point-of-sale terminal, optional DoorDash® on-demand delivery services, 24/7/365 US-based customer support, and remote training and installation.
“This is a pivotal time for restaurant owners, and we want to do everything we can to help them survive so they can thrive in the future,” said Dan Wallin, Vice President of Products. “The new no-contact feature available for store owners, customers and delivery drivers is in high-demand right now.”
In addition, existing Revention customers who may not have online ordering can add it today with no set up fees and deferred payments until June
Revention has implemented a new no-contact process of remote training and installation so restaurateurs can get up and running quickly with this limited-time online ordering and delivery starter bundle for only $199 per month.
For more details, click here.
VoucherCart, rallies to the aid of businesses during the COVID-19 crisis by offering cost savings for use of their automated gift card and voucher technology platform and by adding more onboarding team members to cope with demand.
The platform allows businesses to take payment in full and in advance on all sales of their voucher, gift card, and memberships, as well as issuing complimentary and free vouchers with any values they choose to their customers in cases of refund requests.
This assists businesses to generate revenue, avoid costly refunds by issuing complimentary vouchers and otherwise stem the tide of losses they are facing through mandatory lock-downs.
See examples of what they offer here.
"We understand the plight of businesses globally at this time and are doing what we can to support them through this period of lock-downs and uncertainty," Head of Channel Sales at VoucherCart Dawn Galmiche said. "Businesses are still able to sell vouchers, gift cards and discounted and value-added offers online, allowing them to drive cash directly and immediately into their bank for products and services they can deliver later down the line. We've reduced our monthly subscription fees across the board and are waiving our first month's fees entirely. We've leveraged fast onboarding and expanded our onboarding team to cope with demand, so businesses can get their vouchers live and can now start selling same-day."
Businesses wishing to take advantage of the VoucherCart COVID-19 support offer can register here and will automatically receive the first month's fee waiver: https://vouchercart.com/ and free accelerated onboarding.
RizePoint is now offering complimentary access to COVID-19-related forms, reports, and auditing tools to all food, retail and hospitality organizations.
RizePoint understands that food service organizations are facing unprecedented challenges in responding to COVID-19. The top priorities are to ensure employees and customers stay healthy, and to help stop the spread of this deadly virus. Therefore, food service professionals need to implement enhanced Cleaning, Sanitization, and Safety Protocols. But they might not know the appropriate protocols for COVID-19 (e.g., what cleaning and sanitization chemicals have been registered with the EPA with a coronavirus claim.)
Another major issue: How can food businesses rapidly deploy and train all retail locations/employees and track progress, responses and other mission-critical information?
RizePoint’s free COVID-19 Response Solution, available now through March 2021, can help. It includes:
Access to mobile auditor for COVID-19 response, with no limit to the number of audits or locations.
Forms and virus feedback reports unique to coronavirus.
Information on cleaning, sanitization, safety and training protocols, as they relate to this pandemic.
A RizePoint COVID-19 Resource Center, where information is regularly updated.
Food service professionals are currently in “rapid response” mode to address the COVID-19 outbreak. RizePoint’s resources are applicable now as we navigate the crisis and will see us all into full recovery. RizePoint’s solutions will help food organizations restore consumer confidence and get back to business.
There are no obligations, limits, subscriptions or sales quotas needed to access these free solutions.
"In times like these, it's important to help the restaurant owners that have been the backbone of our communities," said Robert Marhamat, CEO of Paytouch. "It's time to forget about our revenues, forget about profits and focus on helping others in need. We are all in this together. As an organization, we believe it's time to take action and do what we can to support our local restaurants and communities."
If online ordering, takeout, and delivery are not currently part of a restaurant's business model, Paytouch would like to help your business build them out quickly and at no cost.
To show ongoing support, all restaurants will receive:
Three months of POS service: $79/month is now Free
Online ordering platform : $49/month is now Free indefinitely
Free Delivery Integration Module (Integration with third-party Takeout and Delivery Apps): $89/month is now Free indefinitely
To learn more, click here.
Qwick launched their digital orientations to help onboard new Professionals and a certification training program for hospitality Professionals currently enrolled on their platform. Qwick is also taking action to help the 82K+ Professionals on their platform respond to COVID-19 by waiving all cancellation penalties.
Due to the increased demand for freelance work, Qwick will be rolling out virtual orientations to Professionals, starting today. Qwick's Orientation process, which has historically been in-person, is the first step in vetting Professionals for quality. The new digital experience will include a remote interview piece as well as a "Qwiz" that tests for work experience. Each step of the process carries an element of the weighted scoring system, determining whether a Professional is eligible to receive shifts from Businesses.
The company is simultaneously launching the Qwick COVID-19 Certification Program in partnership with 360training to provide a free training program for those on their platform. The goal of the program is to educate hospitality workers on how to prevent acquiring and/or transmitting COVID-19. Once Professionals have completed the online course, they will take a comprehension quiz to educate on developments related to the Coronavirus and how to prepare restaurants for virus prevention. Upon completion of the program, Professionals will receive the certification on their profile and have access to more shifts.
“The health and safety of Qwick’s community is our priority. With recent news around COVID-19, we want to make sure Professionals know the best ways to protect themselves and others when filling shifts,” says Jamie Baxter, CEO of Qwick. “The COVID-19 pandemic is undeniably affecting the hospitality industry and it’s important now more than ever for Professionals to continue offering excellent service while maintaining the best practices for safe food preparation.”
Additionally, Qwick will be waiving all cancellation penalties to encourage Social Distancing as well as supporting those who need to take sick leave. These measures are being implemented to protect the Qwick community and ensure Professionals are taking the right precautions to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Qwick provides a platform for food and beverage Professionals to connect directly with hotels, caterers, event venues and restaurants with the freedom and flexibility to work on their own schedules. Qwick currently operates in 7 total markets around the nation: Phoenix, San Diego, Dallas, Houston, New York, Miami, and Atlanta.
For more information on Qwick’s initiatives during this time, click here.