The restaurant industry is one of the oldest businesses around. Just like all other businesses, its primary focus is profitability, delivering shareholder value, and sustainability. Production processes and employees are vital resources needed to achieve these objectives. Thus, a detailed look at them is well justified from a managerial standpoint. In the next sections, research on productivity and employee satisfaction within the industry are done, with the hope of getting invaluable insights into the restaurant business. Recommendations are then made on how restaurant businesses can go about optimizing productivity and boosting employee satisfaction.
Overview of the restaurant industry
As of 2017, the foodservice and restaurant market had a value of 3 trillion US dollars. The US market is the largest, standing at 872 billion US dollars. It is followed by China, which has a value of 624 billion US dollars. China, however, has a growth rate of about 10 percent annually, which will see it dominate the global industry in years to come. The European market has a value of 508 billion US dollars with the UK, France, and the Netherlands as the market leaders.
The productivity of the industry
Mhalanga (2018) notes that seasonal variations and other unpredictable factors impede the efficiency of the hotel industry. The author proceeded to investigate the factors the affect efficiency of restaurant industries in South Africa. He observes that the size, location, and revenues generated are not the main determiners of the efficiency of restaurants. On the contrary, cost-efficiency is the main determiner. Based on the findings, restaurant managers need to boost their revenues during peak seasons through appropriate pricing, while simultaneously cutting costs to increase efficiency. Mun & Jang (2018) conducted similar research on the impact of costs on the performance of restaurants. The research established that high food and salary costs affect the performance of full-service restaurants more than their limited service counterparts. The implication to managers of restaurants is that they need to need to focus on food quality instead of advertising to maximize profits. Tan &Netessine (2017) investigated the impact of technology on the performance of restaurants. The tabletop technology was used as the reference case study. The technology was promoted in a restaurant chain, and its impacts analyzed. It was noted that the tabletop technology could increase the sales by 2.91 percent and reduce the duration to serve meals by 9.74. This translates to a 10.77 percent increase in productivity. In summation, the three pieces of research note some of the most important factors to optimize restaurant productivity. They are cost efficiency, food quality, and technology.
Employee satisfaction in the industry
Nonaka et al. (2016) analyzed the levels of employee satisfaction in the Food Service industry. The researchers used questionnaires to get information from restaurant staff in the industry. They established that the industry has different levels of employee satisfaction that mostly depend on the working position of the staff. The research makes for a strong case to improve employee satisfaction uniformly throughout the industry. Amin et al. (2016) discuss some of the structural issues that could affect employee satisfaction. They look at the Total Quality Management system and its impacts on hotel performance and employee satisfaction. The researcher established that TQM principles boost employee satisfaction significantly. Specifically, the leadership and customer focus elements of TQM were seen to have a great effect.
Cheema et al. (2015) conducted similar research to investigate how employee engagement and visionary leadership affect the levels of employee and customer satisfaction. Questionnaires were used to gather information from 22 restaurants. Information was gathered from restaurant employees, managers, and customers. The research established that visionary leadership, emotional commitment, and employee engagement are key success factors in employee satisfaction. Employee engagement, in particular, was seen to have a much greater effect on satisfaction than all the other factors.
To sum up, the first research justifies interventions to boost employee satisfaction in restaurants by observing that the satisfaction levels are usually uneven. The second makes a strong case for the adoption of TQM to improve employee satisfaction. The final research points out the need for quality leadership and employee engagement to improve satisfaction.
How to manage employee productivity and employee satisfaction
From the literature, restaurants can pursue the following strategies to increase employee productivity and staff satisfaction. On productivity, first, restaurants need to be cost-conscious. They should strive to maximize sales while at the same time, try to cut costs. Here, companies need to set appropriate prices for products and engage in organization-wide cost-cutting initiatives to boost productivity. Secondly, companies need to check the quality of their food. This element of production has a huge impact on the overall revenues of firms in the industry. Thus, a quality management system should be put in place by restaurant businesses. Thirdly, they should adopt technology in a bid to woo more customers and to cut costs. Technologies such as the tabletop tech can increase productivity by over 9 percent, making the interventions worthwhile.
Regarding employee satisfaction, restaurants need to ensure that the levels of satisfaction are uniform throughout their enterprises. Nonaka et al. (2016) note disparities in satisfaction levels based on the job position, thereby creating the need for restaurants to strive for evenness. Additionally, concepts such as Total Quality management should be adopted by restaurants. Such concepts promote good leadership and business practices that have a profound impact on employee satisfaction. Visionary leadership in particular, needs to be emphasized as this was the main factor affecting both productivity and satisfaction. Lastly, restaurants need to strive to boost employee engagement. Here, interventions such as team building and involving staff in key decisions can go a long way in improving employee satisfaction.
This was an evaluation of how to increase productivity and employee satisfaction in the restaurant industry. The global industry has a value of about 3 trillion US dollars, with the US having the largest market. The evaluation began by reviewing the existing literature on productivity within the industry. It was established that cost efficiency, food quality, and technologies have an impact on productivity. On employee satisfaction, literature noted that the levels of employee satisfaction are uneven in the industry; this makes a strong case for being intentional about increase employee satisfaction. Total quality management principles, visionary leadership, and employee engagement were noted as vital for improving employee satisfaction. The research proceeded to offer a set of recommendations on how to optimize productivity and improve employee satisfaction based on the above research.
Amin, M., Aldakhil, A. M., Wu, C., Rezaei, S., &Cobanoglu, C. (2017). The structural relationship between TQM, employee satisfaction and hotel performance. International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, 29(4), 1256-1278. doi:10.1108/ijchm-11-2015-0659
Cheema, S., Javed, F., &Akram, S. (2015). Employee engagement and visionary leadership: Impact on customer and employee satisfaction. Journal of Business Studies Quarterly, 7(2), 139. Retrieved from https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/5442/88662afb23205e34cc345ad2d55b4545234e.pdf
Cravy. (2018, October 2). The Restaurant Industry: A Global Perspective. Retrieved from https://medium.com/@CravyHQ/the-restaurant-industry-a-global-perspective-26cea1b91701
Mhlanga, O. (2018). Factors impacting restaurant efficiency: a data envelopment analysis. Tourism Review, 73(1), 82-93. doi:10.1108/tr-07-2017-0109
Mun, S. G., & Jang, S. (2018). Restaurant operating expenses and their effects on profitability enhancement. International Journal of Hospitality Management, 71, 68-76. doi:10.1016/j.ijhm.2017.12.002
Nonaka, T., Kaihara, T., Fujii, N., Yu, F., Shimmura, T., Hisano, Y., & Asakawa, T. (2016). Employee Satisfaction Analysis in Food Service Industry – Resultant of Questionnaire to the Restaurant Staff. Serviceology for Designing the Future, 23-36. doi:10.1007/978-4-431-55861-3_2
Tan, T., &Netessine, S. (2017). At Your Service on the Table: Impact of Tabletop Technology on Restaurant Performance. SSRN Electronic Journal. doi:10.2139/ssrn.3037012