Is There A Place For eLearning In The Restaurant Industry?

Is There A Place For eLearning In The Restaurant Industry?
Summary: High staff turnover in restaurants negatively impacts service quality, with many establishments losing seven out of ten employees annually. To address training challenges and ensure consistent service, eLearning is emerging as a vital tool in the restaurant industry.

Navigating High Turnover: The eLearning Solution

Everyone enjoys a great meal out of the house from time to time, and while there are plenty of quality restaurants to choose from in most towns and cities, there are typically more which are subpar. Plenty of factors contribute to this: the work is demanding, with odd hours and tight schedules; customers can be unreasonable; wages are lower and hard to live on, and, usually, most people don't see themselves doing that type of work long term, but rather as a placeholder while working themselves through college.

Regardless, high turnover in staffing is a major negative contributing factor to the quality of a restaurant and its ability to serve customers a wonderful meal and experience. The restaurant industry is sadly synonymous with high turnover, as indicated by the Bureau of Labor statistics which shows that many restaurants lose seven out of ten staff members per year on average. Such a problem makes it difficult for owners and managers to ensure great service.

The near constant turnover rate takes a lot of time and effort in and of itself, but a major downside is also the amount of time that is required to train the constant flow of new employees. Though there are typically multiple solutions to any problem, one of the more effective tools that owners and employers can use to help with quality of service and high turnover rates is to implement quality training. A great way to help in this process is making a place for eLearning in the restaurant industry.

Benefits To eLearning In The Restaurant Industry

Many industries such as hospitals and colleges, which are now offering free courses, are becoming savvy to the many benefits which accompany the implementation of eLearning in staff training. There are some obvious factors to the success of these systems, one of which is the multidimensional engagement that accompanies the use of separate mediums for learning and engagement.

It is difficult to imagine the world without technology nowadays. Most people have a smartphone and a computer which means that the ways people interact with the world is increasingly in multimedia formats. More than that, it has been proven that the pairing of movement and audio messages does well to hold viewers’ attention. When combining factors like this with the need for and importance of efficient and effective staff training, eLearning becomes the obvious choice, but what are some of the more specific, individualized benefits which accompany eLearning, and how can those aid the restaurant industry?

Digital Enhancement

There is little question about the place and power of in-person training. The ability to read, judge, determine, and adjust mid-session for questions and observations are just a few reasons for this, but that does not mean that these means cannot be enhanced.

Traditional classrooms and institutions throughout the world have been testing and proving that blended learning techniques contain a series of benefits. Blended learning provides multiple ways and mediums by which people can engage with information, meaning that people of various learning preferences have the freedom to choose whatever best suits their learning styles. Recognizing and supporting this spectrum of learning styles means that more people can be properly engaged for more effective, long-term remembrance of procedures, guidelines, and laws that better serve the team and customers.

Time And Cost Effective

There is no need to say it any other way: eLearning is a great way to save time and money, all while supplementing in-person training. Managers will always have their hands full with more tasks that need their attention than they have time for in a week.

Adding training to that, with uncomfortably consistent turnover rates, just becomes another level of stress. eLearning tools are a great way to support managers by freeing up their time so that they can focus on all of the other tasks which already demand their attention. Not only does this apply to managers, but also to other current employees.

With eLearning you can bring new employees up to a basic learning level so that they are able to step in faster to the demands of the workplace. From there, regular interaction and checking in from managers and other employees supports what was already communicated in digital formats.

Training Consistency

Whether the restaurant is a single, family-owned diner or a chain of successful fast-food drive-throughs, employee training needs to be as uniform as possible at a foundational level. The various positions which maintain the quality customer service desired by employers and expected by customers can be difficult to attain if employees have started at different times over the life of the business.

A great way to see to the uniformity of quality care, with things like personal dress codes or industrial hygiene, is to create and utilize training curriculum which is accessible to employees in any position. eLearning systems maintain the availability of many different tools such as video instruction and multiple-choice tests that, because of their consistent information, ensures that all employees are being presented with the same information and techniques.

From this point, in-person training can take over to determine what individualized adjustments need to be made. If there is doubt as to the effectiveness of eLearning in the restaurant industry be encouraged. Many major brands like McDonald’s utilize eLearning as a way to maintain consistency across continents. If they can do it, then so can a small, local restaurant.