5 Essential Items to Have in a Restaurant Checklist

A checklist of what needs to be found in any start-up restaurant to ensure success.

Any seasoned restaurateur will say it is not easy to open up a food business, and that it is a learning process in order to become a success. While there is no cookie-cutter approach for each establishment, especially when it comes to cuisine and presentation, there are some basics that should be on any restaurant checklist. These are important things to keep in mind in order to make sure that everything is in place even before it opens its doors.     

In the excitement of putting up a new food concept, there may be some nitty-gritty things that can be overlooked, and often, they are the ones that matter the most. Here is a restaurant checklist that covers what needs to be present in any dining establishment which will help budding restaurateurs be on their way towards achieving their dreams.   

1. Good Ventilation 

Installing the right restaurant ventilation system is an essential restaurant checklist item because it is needed for the safe preparation and storage of food, along with the comfort of employees and customers. It is important to have good ventilation in the restaurant kitchen area not only for the reduction of odors but also for overall improved air quality and temperature reduction in what is bound to be a very hot and busy kitchen.      

2. Safety Measures

It goes without saying that the kitchen can be a hazardous place with sharp knives, hot cooking equipment, and wet floors that are a big risk for falls. It is important to invest in quality safety equipment, starting with smoke alarms and fire extinguishers, along with a first aid kit for cuts and burns. Part of the restaurant checklist should also be training staff on what to do in case of accidents and emergencies, as this will go a long way in keeping them calm and prepared when an untoward situation arises. It is also very important that the kitchen layout be streamlined to avoid accidents.  

3. Restaurant Software

One of the most overlooked aspects of opening a restaurant establishment is investing in technology that can help busy business owners simplify day-to-day operations. For example, a good POS system is as important as a reliable grill in a busy restaurant. Choosing the right restaurant POS system will cut down on kitchen errors, manage inventory, control costs, prevent theft, track the popularity of your menu items, reconcile tips, keep accounting books accurate, among other things. In overall, it helps monitor the end-to-end restaurant management system. 

4. Attentive Staff

Waitress serves dishes.
Good service is an integral part of business success and should be on any restaurant checklist. (Photo: Shutterstock)

Good service is crucial when it comes to the restaurant experience, which is why this is included as a vital part of the restaurant checklist. Staff training on the level of customer service that is expected of the frontliners is important to ensure the restaurant’s success. More than looking at the skills, start by hiring staff that have pleasing personality and attentive to customer’s needs. Employ a protocol on professional behaviour that staff should adhere to.       

5. Thoughtful Ambience Design

Tables and chairs in a restaurant.
A good ambience makes customers more comfortable, which is why it should be part of an essential restaurant checklist. (Photo: Shutterstock)

Ambience gives a restaurant its own distinct character. There are several factors that create ambience, from the interior design, to the music, and even the spaces between seats and tables. It is important to include this in the restaurant checklist because there are studies that have shown ambiance can affect everything from customers’ initial perceptions on the establishment, how much time and money they spend in the restaurant, and if they decide to returnA good ambience is one that sets a comfortable atmosphere where diners feel relaxed as they take their meals.  

High levels of customer satisfaction translate to repeat customers, word-of-mouth marketing, and in the end, generate higher revenue for the restaurant.  


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