Your Restaurant’s Trash is Telling You Something

— How to Discover Insights and Implement Comprehensive Recycling Programs —

Nobody likes to take out the trash, especially in restaurants.

A restaurant manager’s role is to ensure smooth operations throughout all facets of the restaurant, from the food served to the trash in the dumpster. Restaurant managers need to be aware of all potential issues before they become noticeable to customers or even other staff.

Out of all the responsibilities restaurant managers have, dealing with waste may be one of the most frustrating. They may not have transparency into where their waste is coming from, and they may not feel confident in how many trash pickups are needed, what size waste container is needed or how to implement a recycling program that will actually be followed by employees. A waste services provider can alleviate some of this stress by providing needed clarity into waste management and recycling programs while also being cost-effective for restaurant managers.

Impactful Insights

There are plenty of opportunities for mishandled trash to become a bigger problem. It could be too heavy for an employee, causing back pain or injury, or the bag could spill or break creating a slippery spot on the floor. Too many trips to the dumpster can invite unwanted critters or insects into the kitchen and dining areas, leading to health and safety issues for employees or customers. Perhaps the waste container has a loading height of five feet, but your employees can’t lift the garbage that high, causing some trash to spill outside of the dumpster, an unsightly image for restaurant-goers to see. Not to mention the health code violations and fines that could result from an overflowing dumpster.

These pain points may seem like the norm at this point, but a waste services provider can help. Through the data from waste technology, they can provide insights to restaurant managers that not only identify their waste problems but offer valuable solutions, including cost savings and operational efficiencies. They can assist managers with how to handle materials properly, how to reduce spillage, slips and falls, and how to make trips to the dumpster more efficient.

Your waste services provider uncovers these critical insights by evaluating and understanding what the waste streams are, what materials are coming into your restaurant and how are those materials being utilized by employees. For example, is waste being generated mostly from the dining room cleaning staff, packaging waste from suppliers or scrapings from customers’ plates? Once you and your services provider learn exactly where the waste is coming from, you can implement best practices to eliminate excess waste from being created at all.

Recycling Realizations

Another common issue restaurant managers and employees face is confusion and lack of clarity in implementing a recycling program. Most people are aware of the need to recycle, but when each state, county and city may have different rules for recycling, it’s hard for employees and managers to keep up with regulations. Finding and understanding the needed information takes necessary time away from other important managerial tasks, and when staff need to make quick decisions in this fast-paced industry, an ill-defined recycling program will likely result in inconsistency.

Studies also show that employees find value in company programs that make them feel like they’re making a difference and contributing to something bigger than themselves. Restaurant employees who follow a well-defined recycling program can feel more confident in their job, more pride in their environmental impact and more in alignment with management expectations.

By simply implementing a clear and comprehensive recycling program, employee satisfaction and retention can increase. A waste services provider can assist management by laying out a recycling program that makes the most sense for their restaurant, ensuring that it is both well-defined for staff and cost-effective for operations. By using waste and recycling container sensors, their provider will also continuously monitor whether these programs are being followed and can alert them if an issue arises or if more employee training is needed.

Trash is inherently messy, but by partnering with a waste services provider, it’s possible to make a positive impact on restaurant operations. Waste services can impact employee engagement through a clearly defined and executed recycling program, discover insights to create more efficient health and safety operations and reduce overall waste management costs for restaurants. Taking out the trash just became more interesting.