Restaurant Facility Management in the Era of Millennials

Millennials form the largest generation in the U.S., reports QSR magazine. Their influence is the result of highly protective parenting movements and a determination to be the best at what they do and those with whom they interact. Millennials have pushed the boundaries of restaurant facility management. They demand more service, internet, personalized capabilities, online ordering and a commitment to quality over price. Restaurant Facility Managers need to understand the challenges of changing operations to meet millennials’ expectations, the value of the internet to millennials and a few best practices to managing such transformation.

Challenges of Meeting Millennials’ Expectations for Restaurant Facility Management

Major stereotypes surround millennials. Executives are doing all they can to fold in the characteristics of millennials. Millennials form the largest workforce and buying group in America. Their technology-driven childhood leads to the first challenge—they expect technology in the workplace and as an extension of service.

The next challenge of millennials facing restaurant facilities management is their indifference toward authority. They do not care whether you are the C-suite executive or a layperson, asserts QSR magazine. They expect to see a face and image that builds the brand, not just a worker behind a counter or serving a table.

Millennials are also apt to recognize when an employer is trying to buy loyalty through unnecessary perks. This carries over into the restaurant industry.

The Internet Is the Most Important Factor for Millennial Engagement

Digital transformation is the most influential factor for millennials considering a visit to your restaurant. They expect a digital experience that combines the nuances of the physical world with the endless capability for personalization within the virtual world. More importantly, the internet plays a vital role in managing millennials' decisions. Yelp, Google, Facebook, and other social media play a constant tune of whether a millennial should visit a place or not, says Focus POS Systems. Of course, digital transformation holds additional value for restaurant facility management as companies look to hire and retain facilities management talent.

How to Improve Restaurant Facility Management and Attract Millennials

Restaurant Facility Managers should follow these steps to attract more millennials to their facilities.

  1. Rotate menu offerings.
  2. Increase visibility of C-Suite executives, performing mundane activities and connecting with millennials.
  3. Follow sustainable practices. Cleaning, waste management, energy consumption, and even food sourcing.
  4. Ensure your facility has curb-appeal.
  5. Reduce disruption risk.
  6. Create a strong internet presence.

To attract and retain talent, restaurant Facility Managers should follow these additional steps:

  1. Use technology in making maintenance decisions.
  2. Deploy a CMMS to prioritize and schedule needs.
  3. Give team members a sense of authority and accountability.
  4. Make their contributions known with recognition.

Make Your Restaurant Millennial-Friendly With the Right Facilities Management Strategy

Creating a millennial-friendly restaurant can be challenging. It is possible when Facility Managers take steps to attract the right talent and customers from this enormous generation. More importantly, restaurants, which traditionally provide a service, have a higher level of expectation from millennial's for experiences over subsistence. Companies that figure this out today can craft the millennial-inclusive and in-demand restaurant facilities management strategy to succeed.
Eric Crabb

Eric Crabb