Learn How This Restaurant Chain Combats Pandemic

Despite prevailing circumstances, restaurateurs are not letting their boat sank; They are oaring in the sea storm strategically
  • BY Jaspreet Kaur

    Feature Writer, BusinessEx

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  • Jul 03,2020
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  • 13 Mins Read

The Unlocked phase is anticipated to have normalcy in the business landscape. Although things are far away from reality, many restaurants and food businesses are still grappling to survive. The epidemic has developed skepticism in the minds of the Indian demographic. The restaurants are not receiving as much customer footfall as they were receiving earlier in pre-pandemic. 

Despite prevailing circumstances, restaurateurs are not letting their boat sank. They are oaring in the sea storm strategically. The Vadodara-based restaurant chain, Messy Bowl is operating its business in a similar manner by combating the pandemic. The restaurant business is accepting the challenges posed by the contagion. 

Changing Customer Behaviour  

The restaurant chain has recently resumed its services across Vadodara. Initially, it has dealt with hesitation among people to come to the restaurants. There is predominant fear amongst people regarding the outside food, thereby, dining out is no more preferred by demographic.  

"Customers are essentially concerned whether the food is being prepared under hygienic conditions or not. They have grown skeptical and it is in their mentality. There are millennials from the entire demographic, who are preferring to have food outside. 50 per cent are not coming while the rest of the demographic, including millennials are ready to explore things in this situation also," Charmi Dave, Founder of Messy Bowl shared the customer insights. 

To serve this set (millennials) primarily, the restaurant has trained its staff for zero touch contact. The staff do not offer menu cards. Menu cards have been essentially framed and hung on the walls. Thus, they are not given to the customers. Further, the staff checks every customer’s body temperature. Then, they are properly sanitised and other additional measures are being taken.

The restaurant chain has other franchises also, which are shut right now, as they are wholly based in the southern region of India--Mumbai, Pune and Chennai, to name a few. 

Pandemic-led Problems 

As businesses were shut temporarily during the lockdown, every business faced its own share of problems. Coming to the restaurant industry, it has mainly faced problems in maintaining things in its premise as per the government protocol. 

"Whatever guidelines the government has framed, restaurants have to follow those mandates.  Therefore, shedding off a chunk of revenue that was a major repercussion," Dave told BusinessEx. 

Strict safety measures were also turning into a pain point for the restaurants who did not have adequate know-how and capital.

Combating Strategies 

Excluding franchises in southern India, the restaurant chain has 5 outlets in vadodara. Initially, its business owner started with three outlets observing the situation. She also adopted cost-reducing techniques to decrease expenditure.  

The restaurant company mainly uses stocks that include perishable items. To reduce losses, firstly, it ordered a minimum amount of food stock considering the customers' demand. It also had to lay off a few employees in order to lessen its cost. 

"The company started in-house delivery services apart from partnering with Swiggy and zomato. The restaurant’s staff is being used to deliver the food by taking proper shields," Charmi informed.  

For home delivery services, it has shared a telephone number with customers and is offering home delivery services through it. Seeing the customers' incline towards healthy food, the restaurant chain has also begun offering fresh juices to the customers. 

These small measures are helping the restaurant chain to handle pressure in the new business landscape. Looking at the F&B industry, it has severely battered during the pandemic. The newly emerged hygiene standards would not fade away easily in the industry. After the pandemic, it can be the top most priority for businesses and individuals, who are dining outside. People can be seen expecting these safety measures on a priority basis.

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