5 ways to combat the impact of Novel Coronavirus Outbreak on Restaurant Franchise
The World Health Organization declared the COVID-19 outbreak a pandemic. In this situation of Public health emergency across the nations, the grounds of the business world are shaken to roots. Leaving the deepest impact on the Hospitality sector and hampering the business for Restaurants specifically.
Restaurant franchises around the world have encountered drop-offs in patrons, whereas Chinese food-joints are bearing the brunt of losses. Additionally, there have been major interruptions in the food supply chain as factories temporarily close amidst the outbreak and concerns grow surrounding the importing and exporting of goods.
This fundamental human crisis is not just impacting the business owners but also the franchise market. The outbreak has put restaurant franchisors and franchisees into the dilemmatic situation whether to keep the outlets functioning or close the shutters down.
Though the restaurateur nonetheless believes this is temporary and sooner the things ought to get back to a normal pace, it definitely has notable financial implications. The National Restaurant Association of India also suggested to shut-down the dining-in operations until 31st March. But, the owners are still reluctant and want to give this suggestion a second thought.
Meanwhile, Arvind Kejriwal, Chief Minister of Delhi, has announced that any kind of gatherings, including family, religious, social, cultural and political, will be restricted to 20 people until 31st March. He further asked restaurants in Delhi to keep the dine-in operation closed whereas the takeaway and food delivery services will be functional as of now.
After observing the present situation, here we present 5 ways that can help restaurant franchises to combat the impact of Novel Coronavirus Outbreak:
Online is the new trend
People are refraining much of outdoor exposure in current scenarios. Some restaurateur claimed that their dine-in sales have drastically crashed since February end. The patrons are rather preferring the delivery option much convenient in order to limit their exposure while savoring the same great flavors from their food. Franchisors can use online mode for increasing the sales of their franchised outlets; this will support franchisees to recover certain losses incurred at this time.
It is important to realize that COVID-19 gets spread only because of unhygienic/contaminated environment. As a precautionary measure, the entire staff of a restaurant must be trained on how the virus spreads & the right way to control/minimize the same. The restaurant staff must try to maintain the utmost hygiene by following the basics right.
Simple things like servers washing their hands regularly, cleaning the tables with disinfectant, cleaning all areas touched by guests like doorknobs, chairs, tables, etc. It is the responsibility of the franchisor to supervise that same hygienic practices are followed by the staff in all outlets across the globe. The staff has to understand that they are a part of the hospitality industry and should not get panic or fall in traps of myths around the disease.
Certain reputed market names like Domino’s, McDonald’s, Foodpanda and Zomato tend to adopt contact-less delivery in order to combat coronavirus. This new delivery model aims at ensuring safety for both the patrons and their delivery staff. This allows their customers to receive the orders without coming in contact with any delivery staff. The customers can avail this service of “Zero contact delivery” by ordering through their official apps.
Talking about the contactless delivery option to a leading media house, Pratik Pota, Chief Executive Officer & Whole Time Director, Domino’s, said, "Customers can place an online order through the Domino's app, ask for Zero Contact Delivery and pay digitally. We will then deliver the Domino's pizzas to customers without any physical contact with our guests. Customer and Employee safety is our number 1 priority and we are taking all measures towards that."
Workshops and Training Sessions
Now with the onset of this virus, the staff must be trained/instructed specially to wash their hands after every half an hour, cleaning of kitchen area several times in a day, regularly cleaning the restaurant with disinfectant. The franchisor with help of franchisees must create more awareness about the disease among their staff members at each outlet.
Suddenly inculcating any habit certainly is difficult. It is important to keep on training the staff and stress on the importance of hygiene practices in this situation of the pandemic. The franchisor must schedule the workshops and training sessions for all staff members starting from housekeeping to the kitchens to the washrooms, restaurants bars, etc and make it a compulsion for all franchisees to follow the instructions and keep a close eye on their staff for maintaining a hygienic environment.
Delivering Healthy Food
Food is not only for the stomach, but also plays a vital role in one’s health. Safe and healthy food is the core of any disease and to ensure the same restaurants are doing their best to deliver health in terms of the food they serve. They are taking the utmost care and precautions to ensure safety and hygiene in all possible ways. From the entire staff wearing masks to usage of hand sanitizers and alcohol wipes.
The financial implications incurred by the industry are irreversible, but taking the above-mentioned precautionary steps can help in improving the current situation of the market.