Due to coronavirus, 2020 was one of the toughest years yet for hospitality industry. Forced closures have heavily impacted on footfall and revenue – and 2021 still a year with plenty of restrictions, this challenging period isn’t over yet.
Despite this, the hospitality industry has shown a fighting spirit, proving that it can operate in a Covid-safe way. Restaurants, bars, cafés and pubs have all had to think on their feet and get creative with new ways of working. Many have quickly adapted to offer takeaway and delivery services, whilst in-door venues have worked hard to implement proper safety and social distancing measures for customers.
The good news is, the restrictions won’t last forever, and with the mass rollout of a vaccine still going strong, the signs are starting to become positive. When doors can open properly again, hospitality businesses need to be ready to make the most of the opportunity.
A host of companies are using the unwanted downtime to improve their processes, become more efficient and sustainable (e.g., by carbon offsetting). At the heart of many of these changes is a move towards digital. Now more than ever, people are going online to order food, pay, make bookings and to leave all-important reviews – so there’s never been a more advantageous time for businesses to step up their online functions.
Here Flogas Britain looks at some of the ways hospitality businesses are enhancing efficiencies and boosting profits.
Once open again, eateries will want to attract as many customers as possible. This is where online booking systems come into play. They look after every part of the reservation process, helping businesses maximise efficiency and revenue.
Using an online booking system means operators can manage enquiries in one place, and it allows quick and easy reservations for customers. Integrated booking systems can enhance efficiencies further, linking bookings to table management software so staff can optimise space in venues.
With high demand for tables and only a set amount of time allowed, kitchen management systems (KMS) are helping to streamline operations. Not only do they speed up service, but they improve accuracy and heighten efficiency across orders.
With the use of kitchen screens, chefs can also see which meals they should be preparing and how long is needed to cook each dish. This helps them serve whole tables at the same time, and at speed. Orders sent through by staff or through delivery platforms are sent to the KMS and alerts make sure that tickets don’t ever get lost. Changes to orders also get fed through, removing any room for error. They can even include recipe and preparation information to assist members of kitchen staff.
It’s not all about online tools though. By reducing energy costs, businesses can increase revenue without having to increase sales, so it pays to make sure establishments are running as efficiently as possible.
Lighting is an area where big savings can be made. Implementing lighting controls and more efficient bulbs can see lighting energy costs reduced by up to 50%.
According to the Carbon Trust, heating can use than 40% of energy in a commercial building, so efficiencies here are vital. In fact, it’s possible to save up to 20% on heating costs just through simple energy saving measures, such as setting thermostats to recommended ranges, servicing boilers and turning heat off in unused areas.
For off-grid businesses relying on more polluting fuels like oil, carbon footprints can be reduced by switching to a cleaner, greener fuel. Liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) has a 20% lower carbon intensity than oil and has delivered cost savings of up to 22% to some Flogas customers. It provides reliable heating and hot water, a controllable, easy-lighting flame for commercial kitchens and a portable option for mobile caterers. Auto-Ordering technology also means businesses never run out of gas, as it’s automatically topped up.