“Peace of mind” has become very important these days, especially when it comes to public establishments such as restaurants and bars. Everyone is desperate for a sense of normalcy. Eating at a favourite restaurant is a step towards that.
We may not ever get back to the way things were before COVID, but with hard work and determination, we may be able to reintroduce some of the things we love back into our lives.
Behind the scenes, people are working very hard to make sure that restaurants and bars are as safe as possible. A whole set of new regulations and protocols have been put in place for staff to work and patrons to have a safe environment to eat and socialize.
Part of these new protocols include contact tracing, which involves tracking people’s information as they enter a public space. Contact tracing is done so that in the event of an infection of COVID-19, the establishment can work with the local health authorities to contact anyone who may have been in the space at the same time as the infected person.
According to Public Health Ontario, “Contact tracing can help individuals who have been in contact with a case of COVID-19 understand their risk and limit further spread of the virus.”
Because there is still so much we don’t know about this virus, and how long we’re going to need to live with it, it’s important for us to consider the importance of safety measures like contact tracing. If by implementing contact tracing in public establishments we are able to protect and save even one life, then it is certainly worth it.
As a result of the contact tracing mandate, full service restaurants have had to factor contact tracing into their greeting process. For some restaurants, the process has not caused too many problems, but for others, it’s an additional strain on staff having to deal with customers who aren’t comfortable with sharing their personal information.
Many full service restaurants have had to use a manual method to implement contact tracing—meaning they have staff write down people’s names and contact numbers upon arrival. This can be problematic for front-end staff that are already under a lot of stress.
There’s also the additional challenge of where and how to store the sensitive hard copy customer information, which needs to be kept on hand for 30 days. The information then needs to be properly destroyed. Some full service restaurants have an effective solution for this, but not all.
As we accept the “new normal”, safety remains a top priority. Many regulations are still being fine-tuned as the pandemic becomes more of a reality that we all have to live with. The more important point here is that we are all working together to define a new normal in the best way we can.
At Recipe, our franchises conduct contact tracking digitally. We support Public Health Initiatives in their contract tracing efforts. We do not share our guest contact information or use it for any reason other than Public Health requests. All guest contact information is destroyed within 14-30 days based on provincial guidelines.
We have also implemented our safety protocol program called Social Safely, to give our restaurant patrons and staff additional peace of mind.
Let’s face it, we all want to get back to normal. The reality is, we may be dealing with some of these protocols for a while, quite possibly forever. Regardless, it’s never been clearer that we all need to work together to get through this.
If you are interested in opening a full service restaurant, you can rest assured that we at Recipe have put rigorous measures in place to provide a safe, clean, healthy workplace. We will continue to adapt and improve as changes in safety protocols are made. Our digital contact tracing solution is just one of the many ways we stay dedicated to our number one priority: keeping you safe. That will always be what’s most important.
Despite the massive challenges that the restaurant community is currently facing, the Recipe Franchising Team would like to extend our message of reassurance. Having been in business for over 137 years, we are confident we can get through this challenging time just like many others in the past. We take pride and ownership in the well being, health and safety of our franchisees, associates and customers. Recipe Franchising is looking towards the future with hope and continuous growth. With the challenges at hand, The Recipe Franchising Team has adopted a new process that we like to call "Frictionless Franchising", a way for you to meet, research, investigate and explore new franchising opportunities with us from the comfort of your home. We want to make sure that we are always here to answer your questions, inquiries, and help anyway we can. Please do not hesitate to contact us.
Stay healthy and stay safe.
The Recipe Franchising Team