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Most restaurants are contemplating the pros and cons of reopening for outdoor or even indoor dining as restrictions ease and figuring out what decisions are the best for their individual scenarios. The CDC has released lots of information about how to keep restaurant re-openings safe (some other helpful content can be found here), and so far success has varied. Today, Texas began the first state to pause its reopening plan. While the impact on restaurants directly isn’t quite defined yet on a state-by-state level, there’s no doubt that some risk is associated with opening a restaurant back up to customers.

In fact, in Houston, some of the restaurants that have already reopened had to close again over the last week as the number of cases in the state has spiked. Obviously, this is an unpredictable time, but as we see more and more municipalities reporting increases in outbreaks, it wouldn’t be surprising to hear that other restaurants across the country halt their operations again. But if a restaurant wants to continue ahead, safety still needs to be the first priority.

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Controlling diner flow is probably the most important thing to manage in a restaurant right now. Single way exit and entry are an easy step to implement to keep people safer. And if you continue with reopening plans, or choose to implement delivery & pick up options, you’ll have an even easier time.

Delivery & pick up options allow you to most easily control the number of people in your restaurant at any one time. Designating a particular area in the restaurant as a pick-up area is one safe option. By minimizing the area of the restaurant non-employees are allowed to wait, you have the most control possible.

While you could choose to try and test everyone who enters your restaurant, it’s easier to just designate a specific area where they are or are not allowed to be when waiting to pick up their food. This applies to both food delivery couriers and people picking up their own orders.

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Food delivery and carry out both continue to be the safest options for restaurants who want to remain open to the public, but are wary of potential on-premises dining. There is a cost associated with reopening for dine-in customers (personal protection equipment, changes to restaurant layouts, limit occupancy) and if closures are necessary again, the restaurants will incur these costs while still not allowing dine-in offerings.

While delivery services do cost restaurants a portion of the revenue, order direct delivery is a great alternative for restaurants who want to operate their delivery business completely in-house. If you have a POS system in place, it is likely easy to switch over and begin to order food directly using your own delivery drivers.

FoodBoss supports restaurants that opt to offer delivery with third-party delivery services, as well as restaurants that prefer to operate their own order direct delivery service. Both are great options that allow you to most safely generate more orders while keeping both employees and diners safe.

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