Arlene Kline elaborated on the unique challenges that restaurants are facing as they reopen following the shutdown caused by the COVID-19 pandemic in an article for Modern Restaurant Management.
“Most restaurants now are dealing with a fraction of their normal staff due to the reduction in operations, either because of state by state social distancing requirements and/or a diminished number of patrons who are willing to dine out these days. Also, take into consideration that though you only can seat 25 to 50 percent of your restaurant, you still must cover 100 percent of the hard costs, so it might not be economical for many restaurants to open for such a small amount of business. If you are one of the businesses that has been lucky enough to receive a small business loan through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act (or otherwise have been able to secure alternate financial backing), you may have been able to retain many of your employees and maintain business continuity in the interim.”
“So how do you maintain your reputation and brand under such conditions? There are a few key considerations that may assist with this endeavor. Essential to calming the storm is communication with your customers. They already know your restaurant and love what you have to offer. They come back because you are providing something of value to them.”