What have been the biggest challenges since re-opening?
We have experienced a shortage of recruits for back of house roles and losing team members to self isolation, even though testing negative.
What are your biggest priorities for the rest of 2021?
It's about getting sales back to 2019 levels.
How important has home delivery become for your business?
It's incredibly difficult to make profit from delivery especially after commission therefore other areas take priority.
How have you adapted to life after Covid regulations?
Our teams have embraced the new normal and adapted well. The bigger challenge we face is what safety areas we will need to maintain - especially with Covid levels rising.
Many of our younger team members do not wish to take the vaccine so this throws up a different set of challenges. One of the successes in operating with Covid has been the introduction of our Order & Pay app called TAMU which has delivered significant benefits to our business in terms of operational efficiency.
What do you see as the biggest opportunities for restaurants and pubs for 2021 and going into 2022?
It is too early to tell as recovering from lockdown will take us at least 12 months to rebuild our balance sheets.
It seems clear that for the vast majority of hospitality speeding up recovery and getting back to 2019 level of sales takes priority. As a result of the prior restaurant restrictions; new practices and new ways of working for restaurants came into play with the use of technology to manage ordering, digital queuing & pre-ordering. Other knock on effects post covid that will remain to the benefit of hospitality are maximizing outdoor seating and promoting reservations digitally; all helping speed up recovery quicker. Last but not least home delivery is here to stay with more consumers adopting it to become habit, the challenge on how to make this area more profitable remains and is a topic we will continue to cover to provide insight. As a foodservice industry the rules on eating out could change at any time so we also need to remain ready to adapt in the face of this.
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