All thanks to Mark Wingett; editor of M&C Report, and his outlook for 2013. In his article in The Restaurant Magazine this month Mark has laid out his thoughts; 2013 is another year to take stock, to consolidate and regroup, a year where “the battle for a share of the consumer Pound has never been more fierce”.
Certainly a bold statement, but coming off the back of an eventful 2012, which included the Olympics and the Jubilee and wasn’t as fruitful for businesses as we hoped, should we be surprised? The average consumer is becoming more aware of food quality and value for money when dining out, they are looking for more than just a meal, they are looking for a commercially viable evening out, comfortable in the knowledge that the money they are parting with is worth every penny.
With so much competition when it comes to dining out, how do businesses then increase their footfall? Mark believes that a shift is taking place; customers are more attracted to loyalty rewards than discounting. If this is the case then one has to ensure that the customer is happy with not only the food but also the service, ambiance and the commercial gains from spending time in one specific restaurant in order to keep coming back. It’s the whole package that will ensure loyalty and we all know it’s not just the food but more importantly the people that can make a good evening out into an excellent evening out and ultimately a destination venue.
With population figures in London being on the rise and your competitors upping their game, the chances that you will find the perfect person for your business begin to grow smaller every day. Retention should be a key priority and recruitment just as important. As someone who has not only worked in the industry, but recruited in it for a number of years, I can tell you that the quality of candidates coming through is not what it used to be. If you can’t retain or retrain then recruitment is your next priority. With such an important function which will ultimately decide the success of your business who better than to do it than the professionals. But don’t just go for the cheapest option. The cost of re-recruiting is often more damaging and time consuming than the initial cost of getting it right the first time. Go with someone you trust, a proven track record, viable credentials and a history in the industry. Much like a restaurant scene, you get what you pay for if you go down the discounted route, but take the loyalty path and the benefits will be that much greater in the long run.