Deciding on the number of staff

  • Make sure you have sufficient people in your restaurant kitchen. Kitchen staff includes head chef, sous chef, line cooks, runners, servers, dishwashers and more. Given how stressful the kitchen environment is, you would need specific people to man each role.
  • If the kitchenstaff roles are clearly defined and each employee knows their respective work, the restaurant works without any friction. There is no confusion between employees and their job roles. 

Rotate your staff 
Hiring specialists in your kitchen is important however someone who is willing to learn can cook almost anything and everything. Instead of restricting employees to working in their respective job roles, let them explore and try out new things. You have to prepare each of you chefs and cooks for situations where they might have to fill in for one another. For example, a grill cook must be able to prepare a sauce. You will have to use extra hands in times of mad rush. 

Provide them with the latest technology and equipment

  • You must not only provide them with the best technological equipment but also give them fun incentives to reward them for their hard workand thereby reducing the attrition rate. 
  • Providing employee manuals that clearly lists down the restaurant guidelines and other details must be provided to each person who joins the restaurant. 

Struggling with the whos and hows of staff recruitment? Here’s how you can hire the best team to run your restaurant.

 Essential tips for Scheduling  

Scheduling plays a key role in restaurant kitchen management. Start a few hours prior. The initial processes of cooking in a restaurant kitchen are significant and time-consuming. 

  • It’s always better to plan and start well before the service in your restaurant begins.That’s the time when you can brief the head chef and sous chef who can further pass on the instructions to their team members and then start cooking. Based on customer reviews and past experiences, you can spend some time with the kitchen staff and decide mutually on new ways in which you can improve employee productivity. 
  • Run the prep sheet with all your employeesat the beginning of the day or towards the end of it. This is especially important for restaurant kitchens that make everything from scratch. Create elaborate prep sheets based on sales reports. This way you’ll know how much time will certain dishes take to make and who to assign those to.  If anyone of the kitchen staff members has a leave scheduled for the coming week, discuss who is going to fill in for them. 
  • You need staff in your restaurant kitchen according to the days. To put simply, you’d clearly need more people on weekends as compared to Mondays.And having regular updates and insights into individual employees, you’ll know exactly who to keep for longer hours and otherwise. Individual employee’s track sales on your POS system will also help in the same. The workflow needs to remain undisturbed. 
  • Before starting the services, make sure you have all the ingredients in place for your specials and regular menu items. Discuss the serving procedures with the wait-staff. Things they must keep in mind, about the seasonal dishes and the regular ones, while interacting with customers. 
  • Staff scheduling is a critical part of restaurant kitchen management.Keeping a track of their shifts, organizing and reorganizing their schedules on certain special days and occasions, comes under this arena of schedules. It also includes team outings and in-house events for the kitchen staff. 
  • Brace yourself for multitasking in your own restaurant kitchen. Even though your team is well capable of handling things on their own, you might have to step in and do many of the tasks yourself.For example, you might have to plate the dishes before they’re sent out to the customers. Or make a gin and tonic, if the bartender is busy with other customers on a Saturday night. This will encourage other members to work even harder.  

Tools and technology 

Using the right technology in your restaurant kitchen will help overcome any shortcomings of kitchen management. Restaurant kitchen technology includes a Kitchen Display System that comes integrated with a Point of Sale system. An efficient KDS digitizes Kitchen Order Tickets. As soon as the orders are punched in, they’re displayed on the KDS. Not just the current orders but your KDS also gives you all information regarding past orders daily performance updates, segregates orders according to priority and different cook time. It helps connect your restaurant kitchen with FOH. 

Here’s a complete guide to restaurant software. 

 Food safety and hygiene 

A very significant part of kitchen management is sanitation. Nobody likes to work in a place that is messy and unclean, let alone cook. Your restaurant’s kitchen staff will be more efficient if they cook in a kitchen that’s organized and all equipment washed or cleaned. Once they enter the kitchen, they wouldn’t have to spend time scrubbing the pans and cookers before they start cooking. Being a restaurant owner, one has plenty already on their plate. However, regular visits to the kitchen will make sure that the staff is helping in keeping the restaurant kitchen tidy. Regular cleanliness checks and sanitation audits are a regular affair in a restaurant kitchen. Here are certain things that are absolutely necessary for such situations. 

  • Make sure there is zero chance of contamination in the products you’re buying for your restaurant kitchen. Each member must be aware of the safety measures. 
  • Have a checklist made where the task of cleaning is assigned and maintained by the cleaning staff. 
  • Have your own audits and surprise checks to ensure attentiveness of kitchen staff.
  • Have some assigned specially to check on food preparation and how they handle things in the kitchen.