Free Management Essays - You are considering opening a food and beverage outlet in a busy city centre, explain in detail the following, giving clear justifications for the choices you make:
What type of food and beverage establishment do you intend to open; therefore what type of establishment would be most successful in a city centre. (Consider the following in your answer; competition, consumer trends and expectations, size of establishment, opening hours, customers you are likely to attract)
Following on from the above, explain the type of menu you intend to serve and considerations given before planning the menu. Give examples of the type of dishes you intend to serve. (Consider the following in your answer; will the menu be a la Carte or table d'hotel, external and internal factors affecting menu planning)
Explain the type of food production you intend to use giving reasons for the choice you have made.
Explain the style of food service you intend to use incorporating in your answer factors that need to be considered before deciding on your chosen style of service.
How will you ensure that every customer experiences a good 'meal experience' in your establishment.
(Include in your answer the factors that make up a good meal experience)
After careful consideration I have decided that the best type of food establishment to open in a busy city centre would be that of a take away establishment. I think this is the best type of establishment to open in a busy city centre for a number of reasons. The first reason is that of successfulness of other types of establishments. From my studies I have discovered that many restaurants fail within its first two years of opening. This is partly due to the large financial outlay needed for this particular type of establishment. Ernst (2002) supports this view.
Another reason why I have decided against this type of establishment is because of the specialised staff required and also the number of staff required. If I decided to open a restaurant I would need to employ a trained chef and a full kitchen staff. These people would require a high pay package. Also, if they needed to be replaced then their highly specialised skills would be hard to come by. Staff in a take away would not need such skills, so recruiting would be quicker and cheaper.
Another, main, reason why I have decided upon a take away establishment is this will attract a large proportion of the city’s population. One reason for this is because a busy city centre will have a busy night life scene. This will mean that there will be a large number of ‘drunks’ in need of food after a night out. They will require fast, convenient and cheap food at the end of their night. My establishment will cater for their needs a lot better than any restaurant could. From studies, and personal experience, I know that there will be a large number of competitors in this field. This can be overcome by offering a better meal experience (discussed later in the essay). Also, there will be a large number of customers, so a new take away will not need to fight too much for customers. The take away just needs to open close to the pubs and clubs and the customers will come.
Another reason why a take away will be the best establishment to open is due the changing nature of society. Society is becoming a much faster pace of life more many people. This is due to better faster communication networks and businesses becoming more demanding and competitive. This will mean that a lot more people will opt for the fast food take away option rather go to a restaurant or cook for themselves. My establishment will also provide a delivery service for this type of customer. Advertisement for this type of business can be done via leaflet drops into nearby housing estates. This will be relatively cheap and simple to do. Also, an advertisement in the local business directories would be placed.
The type of menu I will have will be very simple. This will be a set menu and will be placed very visually above the serving counter. Also, there will be printed set menus that customers can either pick up and take away with them or be sent to houses as part of the advertisement of the establishment. The menu will be simple, as many of the customers that come into the establishment will not be in the most sober of states. The clientele I will be targeting will be the individual who has been enjoying the city’s nightlife scene. After this enjoyment they will require quick, simple and cheap food. Therefore the menu will consist of cheap simple dishes. Examples of dishes will include burgers, pizzas and chips.
The menu choice is based on several factors. The first factor is the type of customers I will be targeting. As I am targeting the night life scene customers I will require cheap simple food. This is due to the fact that after a night out most of the customers I will be attracting will have very little money left. This will mean that they will not want to spend very much. Also, as they have been enjoying the night life they will want quick food as most will be tired and will want to get home to bed as soon as possible. Also, connected to the type of customer is the fact that most will be students or non-students of the age of 18-25. This will mean that they will not have very much disposable income.
Another factor I have considered when deciding upon the menu is that of the personal tastes of the individuals. There are many people who like Italian food, many that like Indian food and many who like Chinese food. However I decided upon the simple burger and chips menu as I think this will appeal to all tastes. Also, this type of menu will be simpler to supply. A report from Leatherhead Food International found that the frozen convenience food sector is the largest sector in the food industry.
An internal factor I have considered is the skill level of the employee. A major cost will be the pay level of the employee. A more complex menu would require a more highly skilled chef. This would mean a higher wage bill. The simple menu I have decided upon will mean that the staff employed to cook the food will not need that much skill and not much training.
Another factor I considered was that of supply of the food ingredients. For a take away I would require bulk buying of chips, frozen burgers, pizza bases and toppings for the pizzas. These ingredients could be bought at the local cash and carry for a relatively cheap price. If I opened a restaurant ingredients would need to be fresh. This would be more expensive and the suppliers of these ingredients would probably be harder to come by.
After consideration of various factors I have decided upon the type of food production I will undertake. The type I have decided upon is that of cook from frozen and on mass. The first reason for this choice is the number of clientele that will need to be catered for on any specific night. Due to the customers I am targeting (nightlife goers) I will need to produce lots of food and quickly. The clientele will not wait around too long for their food. If there is going to be a lengthy wait then the customers will go to the competition, which there is plenty of.
I am cooking from frozen due a number of reasons. One reason is that, as I have already mentioned in previous sections, frozen food can be bought cheaply and conveniently. Also, if extra was needed quite urgently then there are plenty of suppliers that could accommodate the extra supply at a moment’s notice. Buying food in fresh would not have this convenience. Another reason for buying pre-prepared frozen food is the speed of which it can be served. Once the frozen food is defrosted all it needs is cooking and then it can be served. This fits in with the nature of the business. If frozen food were not used then food preparation would take longer. One example would be pizzas. Buying pre-prepared pizza bases would mean that all that is needed is the toppings and then the whole pizza to be cooked. If the pizza base were to be prepared as well then the customer would need to wait longer for their food. This would mean that customers would go elsewhere. Also, a larger food preparation area would be needed. This would cost extra money.
Another reason why I have decided upon cooking from frozen is that it would not require too much space so the size of the establishment would be kept to a minimum. This would reduce rental cost of the location of the take away. Also, if the design of the establishment were as efficient as it possibly could be then size, and therefore cost, would be reduced even further.
After careful consideration I have decided upon the style of service I intend to provide. The service I intend to provide is that of over the counter service. This is the service used by all the competition and by the likes of successful multinational fast food establishments such as McDonalds and Burger King. I will also incorporate delivery service in as well.
One factor I considered was the type of clientele I would be attracting. Over the counter service is the most effective type of service to use when dealing with the type of customer I will be targeting. This is due to the fact that the customer will come, know what they want and want it straight away. I also decided upon delivery, as the other type of clientele I am targeting is that of the person who does not have time to cook for himself or herself. Delivery would suit their style of life. Also, delivery will attract the type of customer who is watching a sporting event. If a person has friends over to watch a sporting event, say the recent Carling Cup final, then this individual will probably order in pizzas or burgers.
Another reason for the decision to go for over the counter service is due to the large menu that would be offered. I will be offering burgers at various different weights and with different dressings. Also, the customer’s decision to have chips or not will not be known. Over the counter service would mean that the customer will decide what he/she wants and then this can be prepared for them in a relatively quick time period.
Over the counter service also allows the presence of tables and chairs to be kept to a minimum. Most customers will want to take their food away with them. Hence the name ‘take away’. This will mean that they will not want to sit down and order. They will want to be in, order and pay as quickly as possible.
There are many factors that are required to provide a good meal experience. I will ensure that my clientele receive a good meal experience by ensuring that I meet these factors. The first factor is to give the customer what they request. If a customer comes in and orders something on the menu and is told that this item is out of stock then this customer might not return (I know this from personal experience). I will make sure that all food on the menu is available.
Another factor of a good meal experience is that of friendly service. I will make sure that the staff are friendly and polite to all customers no matter how the customer acts. Also, delivery times will be as quick as possible and deliveries will be made as promised over the phone as arranged on a customer to customer basis.
A big, important factor of a good meal experience is that of the quality of the food. I will make sure that this is achieved by buying good quality ingredients and making sure that the food is prepared to a high standard. This will be achieved by researching into the best supplier of the ingredients and by high quality training of the employee who will be preparing the food.
Another factor of a good meal experience is that of the price of the product. I will ensure that the customer is satisfied by the price by researching competition prices and keeping expenses, such as cost of buying ingredients and the wage bill, to a minimum.
Another important factor of the good meal experience is the appearance of the premises. I will make sure that the décor of the shop will be bright and friendly. I will also make sure that the shop is, at all times, kept to a high state of cleanliness. Also, background music will be played to make the customer more relaxed.
Ernst S. (2002) Market analysis, financial plan improve restaurants’ success. Hotel & Motel Management, Vol 217, Issue 8, p10
Packaging Magazine (2003) Consumers reach for chilled prepared food. Packaging Magazine, Vol. 6 Issue 15, p18