Is your kitchen in crisis?
Are you feeling a strain on your foodservice operations?
- Food substitutions
- Product shortages
- High cost of food
You're not alone. Foodservice operators have been reporting record staffing shortages as well as a number of other compounding issues that create a bit of a sticky situation. While there is no magic wand (or whisk), there are several strategies you can consider for your operation. Consider these 4 ideas:
Modify the Menu
Consider simplifying the overall menu. Perhaps move from a selective menu to a menu with easy to serve alternative items such as sandwiches, soups, salads, etc. Within the menu, you might also change the days or meals in the menu based on staffing. Lastly, if you are experiencing a product shortage be sure to keep a pulse on your inventory to make menu changes based on food that is on hand. Most importantly, document your changes on a Substitution Form. Click here to access more information about Making Menu Substitutions.
Buy vs. Make
Convenience foods offer just that... convenience! But more than the convenience, often prepared foods can save considerable amounts of time and money. Not to mention, prepared foods offer a standard quality that your residents come to expect. How do you know if buying convenience is right for you? Do the math! Evaluate products for their overall cost compared to the cost, labor, and quality that would yield from a scratch recipe. Buying prepared convenience foods is not a "one size fits all" - there are many factors to consider to ensure it's right for your operation.
Empower and Train the Team
Cross-training can be the single greatest strength for many operators. For employees, it's an opportunity to diversify their skills and feel more invested in the organization. At the very least, consider implementing cross-training in your department; cooks learn the dining room and dining room staff learn to cook. Be sure to consider an incentive for additional training or skills that team members bring to the table. Incentivizing skills is a great way to build employee retention and job satisfaction.
Lean on Technology
At DiningRD, we strive to create software solutions that enable foodservice managers to work smarter, not harder. The Dining Manager suite of menu programs is intended to optimize productivity, improve efficiency, reduce errors, and maintain budget restrictions. Here are 3 services to consider for your operation:
- MealCard for Dining Manager - streamline communications and ensure resident safety. MealCard is a tray card system that integrates resident information such as diet order, allergies, and dislikes to the menus and recipes. Using MealCard ensures that even when you are short staffed, resident orders will be communicated clearly and effectively.
- Electronic Medical Record (EMR) integration - DiningRD is proud to offer EMR integration to PointClickCare as well as other EMR systems. The integration offers automation of information such as admissions, room changes, and allergies while reducing human error. Click here to learn more.
- TableSide for Dining Manager - ready for something really progressive? TableSide enables digital menu selection from a mobile device. Reduce food waste, improve your resident satisfaction, and streamline production all from a tablet or smart phone. TableSide allows for resident order tracking and simplified order taking.
Ready to take the next step with your technology? Schedule a time to talk to our team about solutions for your foodservice department.
Looking for additional resources?
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DiningRD - Health Technologies is committed to improving dining and nutrition services in healthcare communities through expert clinical consulting, innovative menu solutions, and training support for foodservice teams. We nurture joy through food with long term care dining programs. Call us today!