5 Challenges in Employee Training and How to Overcome Them

One of the continued challenges that restaurant owners face is employee retention and staffing shortages–even long before the pandemic. With implications on the business’s reputation and customer experience, maintaining a steady workforce in a restaurant is a high achievement for owners and managers alike.

Getting employees invested in their roles and feeling valued by management has a lot to do with the training process that they received at the onset of their employment. However, there are many obstacles that management may face when trying to effectively train employees, which we will discuss in more detail below.  

Top 5 Issues When Training Employees in Restaurants–with Solutions

It’s clear that properly training employees can help restaurants maintain a positive reputation and provide a good customer experience for patrons. Even still, training restaurant employees isn’t always straightforward, and there are many roadblocks that can arise throughout this process that keep employees from reaching their full potential. 

Let’s take a look at some of these common issues, and how restaurants can remedy them for better and launch new employees to success. 

1. Finding the time for proper training

One of the main issues that gets in the way of employee training in a restaurant is finding the right time to complete the training. While it’s common for new hires to get started shadowing current employees during their first few days on the job, there isn’t always time set aside for management to meet with the newcomer to discuss company culture, expectations, and goal setting, among other things. 

Solution

With a learning management system (LMS) or other employee training software, management can take a hands-off approach to the training process while also still inserting their influence into the journey. Done this way, employees can complete other qualitative training tasks that are important to their long-term success on the job, without having to be one-on-one with a member of the management team. 

2. Upskilling and reskilling

Across industries, there is a growing need for employee upskilling. Put simply, upskilling is the effort that businesses put out to help employees learn new skills that help them do their jobs more effectively. Though upskilling is not limited to tech-focused learning, with the continued digitalization of our global economy, it’s becoming increasingly important for employees to stay educated on new technologies and softwares that restaurants are utilizing. 

Solution

When utilizing an employee training software like an LMS, restaurants are better able to train employees on new skills and information that are necessary for them to do their jobs. Between menu updates, an introduction to a new reservation system, or a re-fresh on customer service protocols, an LMS allows management to provide real-time training for employees that can keep operations running smoothly and employees prepared for the current and future needs of the restaurant. 

3. Outdated training methods

One of the biggest obstacles that restaurants and many other types of businesses face with employee training today is that they’re utilizing outdated methods. Paper employee manuals and guidelines and outdated employee training softwares can keep new employees unengaged from the training process and detract from the learning experience.

If an employee can only digest training materials by reading them from a handbook or going through a dated computer course on-site, they may rush through the training and not get much out of the process. 

Solution

Nowadays, restaurants should be utilizing new and engaging methods to administer employee training. Allowing employees to train on their own time, from their mobile device, will go a long way when it comes to how effective training efforts can be. So, a good LMS will allow the training course to be accessed from anywhere and can be more engaging than a physical copy of an employee handbook. 

4. Limited tracking capabilities

In order to ensure that new employees are on the right track with their training efforts and making good progress towards skill mastery and development, management needs a way to effectively track their training progression. When training is done in-person, it’s easy for manual progress tracking and reporting to become forgotten or ignored. So, it may be difficult for management to see where the new employee is at if they’re not the ones administering the training each day. 

Solution

A great benefit of using an employee training software like an LMS is that all managers and administrators in the system will be able to monitor and track employee progression through the training course. They’ll be able to see areas they’ve mastered, where they’re showing improvement, and maybe other areas where they need some extra help. This feature helps new hires get the help they need, and keep management informed on how far along on the learning curve new hires are–even if they’re not administering the training in person.

5. Training scalability 

Especially as a restaurant grows and maybe even franchises out, it can be challenging for management to scale their existing training efforts across multiple locations. If the restaurant is only offering in-person training, it may be difficult to translate the same experience across locations that have other trainers and management teams. 

The last thing a franchise wants to do is provide differing customer experiences at different locations, so keeping training efforts as uniform a possible for all employees is something that must be prioritized. 

Solution

With an LMS, restaurants are able to administer the same training course across multiple locations. This ensures that employees at all individual locations are set at the same standards, and won’t miss out on valuable training information if they’re not at the principal location. Again, this has positive implications on the overall customer experience and reputation of the restaurant, and is a major benefit of utilizing an employee training software. 

Final Thoughts: Overcoming the Challenges of Employee Training with an LMS

Considering the setbacks and challenges that restaurant management teams face when it comes to employee training, it’s no surprise that the industry is set for a game-changing platform that makes employee training simple, engaging, and useful.

With Retention 360’s Retention360 HQ platform, restaurants can easily administer training courses to employees. With their mobile and desktop-friendly platform, an easily customizable layout, and easy-to-use interface, there’s no excuse to skimp on training efforts.

Especially in today’s business environment, good employee training can make a big difference on a restaurant’s reputation and customer experience, so try out Retention360 HQ today to help your team reach its full potential. 

Upskilling Current Employees with an LMS

There are many factors that modern-day restauranteurs must take into consideration, but staff turnover and falling retention rates continue to be core issues across the industry. Even though these problems have not been unique to the restaurant and hospitality space in recent years, the nature of the industry means that it’s particularly reliant on its staff.

The last thing restaurant owners want is to end up in an endless cycle of recruiting, hiring, and training. So, how can these businesses keep employees engaged in the mission of the business, continue learning new skills, and stay satisfied enough to remain with the restaurant?

One solution for restaurant owners as the business landscape continues to be transformed and face unprecedented challenges is to upskill current employees. 

So what does it mean to upskill employees, and how can this help solve the turnover problem restaurants are facing today?

What is Upskilling?

Let’s begin by providing a quick definition of what upskilling means. In simple terms, upskilling is when a company takes efforts to expand their current workers’ skill sets. 

Among other benefits, giving employees new and additional skills can help them feel more engaged and productive in their positions, and less inclined to search for new roles with better opportunities. Therefore, helping employees feel like they’re learning and growing in their role is a key aspect to retention today, especially in a job market where the job seekers and employees hold all the power.

In a recent study published by Gartner, 58% of the workforce now require new skill sets in order to do their jobs successfully, so this is a widespread issue today that spans across industries. 

Why is Upskilling Important in Today’s Business Environment?

The World Economic Forum has stated that a reskilling of the global workforce could bring about trillions of dollars worth of value into the economy. Thus, early movers who upskill their employees before competitors can gain an edge in their industry. 

In restaurants specifically, upskilling current employees can play a key role in how they are able to retain staff and keep their day-to-day operations running smoothly. Otherwise, they could continue to spend their valuable resources attracting and training new hires without end. But why is employee turnover so costly for restaurants? 

An unstable workforce can easily become a distraction for management and other employees, bringing them to focus on recruitment and training rather than improving strategy. High retention rates can also create a customer experience that ranges widely from day to day, and can cause the restaurant to lose long-standing institutional knowledge that comes from tenured workers. 

On the other hand, having a steady and stable workforce that is knowledgeable about the business, the menu, and the mission of the restaurant can provide a positive customer experience and promote a better reputation.  

Thus, upskilling current employees not only helps restaurants keep staff trained for the needs of today–but also for the needs of tomorrow. Especially with the disruptions caused by the pandemic, many frontline workers like restaurant employees had to learn new processes and skills very quickly. From integrating and managing third-party food delivery apps, to QR menus and more, a massive wave of upskilling was required to help restaurants and workers adapt to the changing times, and continue making money despite the overall economic conditions.  

Upskilling Employees with an LMS

With all this in mind, it’s clear to see that continued on-the-job training can be very beneficial for restaurants and their employees. Of course, getting employees well-trained from the start is a major element here, though this isn’t all the training and attention that employees should receive throughout their tenure. 

A simple and straightforward way that restaurants can re-train and upskill current employees is to use an online learning management system (LMS). These are software applications that give organizations the structure and ability to execute training plans from start to finish, including progress tracking, reporting, and analysis.

Especially for franchises, an LMS can ensure that employees at all locations are on the same page when it comes to workplace duties, menu updates, corporate values, and more. So what are some of the benefits of using a learning management systems for restaurants?

Custom Learning Plans

Restaurants utilizing an LMS can easily deliver different training courses simultaneously based on an employee’s role. Bartenders, servers, line cooks, and front of house staff will all require customized training and skills that are relevant to their positions, so you’ll want to provide them with specialized courses that will keep them engaged and can help them sharpen their skills. Plus, employees who have been at the restaurant for six months may need trained on different skills than someone who’s been there for six years.

Whether management wants to focus on customer service, training for a new technology, introducing a new menu item, or a number of other training items, an LMS makes it possible to assign the relevant training courses to the right people for maximum impact. 

Time Efficiency

As we mentioned before, restaurant management teams have too much on their plate to take on one more task–and re-training and upskilling current employees isn’t something that should be done in a rushed manner.

Therefore, management can remove themselves from the upskilling process when utilizing a good LMS in their organization. With a digital LMS that employees can access from anywhere, management can set learning goals and deadlines and allow employees to complete the training on their own time.

In-person instruction and training is a thing of the past. In today’s digital age, an online LMS can help restaurant management be more efficient with their time, while still providing consistent and valuable knowledge and training to their employees. 

Final Thoughts on Upskilling Employees

While the initial training for restaurant employees is highly valuable and necessary, the continued upskilling and re-training of current employees is also a crucial aspect of workforce management that should not be overlooked.

Employee retention rates are something that restaurants of all sizes struggle with, though keeping employees engaged in their roles through upskilling efforts can help restaurants retain their talent and improve their productivity. With an LMS, management can easily administer continued training courses that are relevant to their employees, and promote a more cohesive work environment. 

Retention360’s Retention360 HQ platform is a leading learning management system for restaurants, helping management become more efficient with their time and impactful with their training.

Launching New Hires to Success 

It’s no secret that staffing and employee retention continue to be among the top challenges for restaurants today, even as the effects of the pandemic ease.

When a restaurant does hire new employees, how can they make sure they are trained sufficiently for the job, feel engrained in the mission of the business, and able to carry out the duties of the job successfully?

Each of these elements is important in keeping new employees engaged and feeling like they have the resources to succeed, all of which can help keep turnover rates down and retention high. Continue reading below as we discuss what restaurants need to do to effectively train new hires–quickly–and what benefits this brings to the business. 

Importance of Training for New Hires in Restaurants

There are a lot of elements that contribute to the strength of a restaurant and its overall reputation. Yes, it can have an amazing menu, great ambiance, and an enviable location, but any restauranteur knows that there’s more that contributes to the customer experience than just these elements alone.

At the end of the day, a restaurant’s staff is the frontward facing part of the business. Their interactions with customers each day shape the customer experience in a significant way–and can even be more important than the elements described above.

Thus, you’ll want to make sure new hires have been thoroughly trained and have all the tools necessary to do their job to the best of their abilities. Not only will it help patrons to have a positive experience that could turn them into repeat customers, but it also leads to a more satisfied workforce that feels empowered to do their jobs properly.

The button line is, well-trained workers will be less likely to seek out new opportunities elsewhere. This is because they have the feeling that management was invested in their development and wanted them to succeed from the start. 

Areas of New Hire Training in Restaurants

With a better understanding of why training for new hires is so important, we also can’t overlook the fact that new restaurant hires face quite a steep learning curve when it comes to all the information and procedures they’re introduced to during their first few days and weeks on the job.

So let’s take a look at some of the main elements that management should familiarize newcomers with so they can be more successful in their role.

Restaurant Specifics

Every restaurant has its own unique elements that set it apart from the rest. This means that new hires will quickly need to become familiar with the menu, the dress code, and expected staff behavior. This will help them provide the customer experience that patrons are expecting from the restaurant, and to feel more assimilated with the rest of the staff. 

Customer Service

Study after study has proven just how important customer service is in any industry. Poor customer service experiences can turn away even the most loyal customers, so restaurant management needs to make sure that all staff, down to the new hires, are well-equipped to deal with customer issues and concerns.

With a large focus on customer service during initial training for new hires, restaurants can maintain their good reputation and provide guidelines for how to treat customers. 

Technology

Our world is becoming increasingly more digital, and the hospitality industry has grown even more accustomed to using technology after the pandemic. Therefore, new hires need to be trained properly on how to utilize the technology that the restaurant employs such as third-party ordering apps, reservation platforms, QR menus, and more. 

Otherwise, new hires could be overwhelmed by the number of apps and platforms they must manage, which could lead to poor customer experience and a negative impact to the restaurant’s reputation. 

Tips for New Hire Training in a Restaurant

It can be costly to continually be recruiting, hiring, and training new employees in a restaurant. Therefore, training new hires well from the start is the best way for management to show they’re invested in the employee and give them the tools they need to be successful in their role. In doing so, they’ll feel more engrained in the business and more likely to stay working for the restaurant.

Take a look at some of our final tips that can help restaurants successfully execute new hire training and boost employee retention rates. 

Host an Orientation

Especially for franchises or restaurants that are doing a lot of hiring, setting up an orientation for new hires to attend during their first few days on the job can help kick-start the training process. 

At this time, they can meet other new employees, be introduced to the management team, and get set up with other training materials or courses that the restaurant will utilize. The orientation doesn’t have to be overly sophisticated, but it could show the new hires that the restaurant is invested in their development and is devoted to their success. 

Set up a Retention360ship Program

One way that management can take a hands-off role in new hire training is to set up new hires with a seasoned vet in the restaurant who can help show the the ropes. While this will help the new hires get good hands-on experience and be trained by one of their peers, this doesn’t allow management to set up a uniform training process for all new hires or track their progress. 

Utilize an LMS for New Hire Training

New hire training doesn’t have to be overly complicated, especially in today’s world when using a digital learning management system (LMS). Not only does an LMS help restaurant management be more efficient with their time by cutting out in-person instruction, but it can also allow them to set up a comprehensive training course that all new hires can access.

With a good LMS, management can track their progress, run reports, and overall train new hires quickly with the confidence that no vital information is being omitted or glossed over. An LMS can be particularly useful for larger restaurants or franchises, as it can help ensure that employees at all locations are providing a uniform customer experience that is consistent and reliable. 


Not to mention, management can use an LMS beyond initial training for new hires. Many restaurants have been upskilling existing employees using an LMS, which has additional positive implications on employee retention and turnover rates.

For the best LMS available for restaurants today, look no further than Retention 360’s Retention360 HQ platform. You can train new employees quickly and effectively with this digital LMS, and feel confident that employees at all locations are aligned with the mission of your restaurant and helping to maintain your positive brand reputation. 

Learning Management Systems for Restaurants–What Makes a Good LMS?

Restaurant owners have a lot on their plates at all times. Between coordinating with food suppliers to managing day-to-day operations, employee training can oftentimes become an afterthought and take the backseat.

Plus, as the pandemic eases, one of the main issues still plaguing many restaurant management teams across the country is employee retention and a worker shortage throughout the industry. 

However, many restaurants are turning towards a streamlined and outsourced training platform to help keep employee skills sharp and efficiently train new hires. So, what exactly are learning management systems, and why are they so beneficial for restaurants?

What are Learning Management Systems?

Let’s begin by taking a deeper look at learning management systems. 

A learning management system (LMS) is a software or web-based platform that helps organizations plan, implement, and review various learning and training processes. They can either be digital-only platforms, or a hybrid of in-person instruction and online learning.

These systems are designed to help organizers create and deliver learning content, and assess performance among participants. Although an LMS is highly effective when utilized in restaurant employee training, many other types of organizations like government agencies and educational institutions will frequently use them to train their employees.

Additionally, employee training through an LMS can be very impactful, helping the business to showcase their corporate culture and engrain the values of their organization into employees. 

Why Your Restaurant Needs a Digital Learning Management System

It’s imperative for restaurants to invest in their people. Between training new hires and keeping current employees educated on the latest menu updates, new procedures, and policy changes, there is a lot of information that needs to be disseminated across the organization. 

Even still–restaurant management does not have the time to manually deliver these trainings and track employee progress day-to-day. 

This is especially true when it comes to franchises. Owners will want to make sure that employees at all locations are up-to-date on the latest developments of the business, and can provide a uniform experience for patrons at any location. But why is this so important? 

Negative Consequences of Poor Training

Imagine a patron who visits one of your locations, enjoys amazing service, an incredible meal, and leaves feeling very satisfied. Later on, they visit another one of your locations, but the experience is the exact opposite. The food didn’t taste the same, the service was lackluster, and the patron left disgruntled and with a different sentiment towards your business. 


Not only could poor training cause higher levels of churn and lower employee buy-in from a lack of cohesiveness, but it can also spell disaster for your restaurant’s reputation. Overall, learning management systems can help restaurants achieve consistent knowledge management across the organization and ensure that everyone is on the same page, while also promoting customer retention. 

How to Tell if an LMS is Good

So when it comes to learning management systems for restaurants, you can see how valuable they can be both for the internal and external operations of the business. 

However, it goes without saying that not all learning management systems are the same, or can provide similar benefits and results. So, there are some specific elements that restaurant owners should be aware of in order to ensure their LMS is effective. 

Let’s take a look at some of these features here:

Customization Capabilities

Restaurant owners should seek out a learning management system that has customization features to match the branding, language, and color schemes of the business. This helps the employees become more indoctrinated into the restaurant’s operations, and makes the program feel more authentic to the company. 

Restaurant owners should avoid digital learning management platforms that are rigid and not flexible, as this could work against the effectiveness of the program and how well employees respond to it. 

Mobile Functionality

Let’s face it–we are living in a mobile-dominated world with most of us doing many of our online activities from our phones. So, completing training programs for work will largely happen on mobile devices as well. Therefore, a good digital LMS is one that has mobile functionality without compromising the quality of the platform. 

Variety of Features

With a range of features from quizzes to open discussions and more, participants in the training course will be more engaged than when presented with more than just reading materials alone. Thus, digital learning management systems that allow course administrators to record videos, host live webinars, and other interactive elements help make the courses more effective. 

Simple-to-Use Interfaces

Adopting new technologies and platforms isn’t always greeted positively by employees, so finding an LMS that is easy to use and has an intuitive interface can be very beneficial. Plus, this will keep employees from becoming frustrated with the program, and more focused on the learning materials at hand. 

Timely Reporting

Another element that defines a good learning management system is that reports of progress and participation are quickly accessible. Depending on the amount of users who will be taking the online training course, some LMS platforms would take hours to run a simple report, becoming bogged down by the wealth of data and information that it holds. Thus, restaurant owners should look for a system that can provide them with real-time reporting. 

Customer Support

At the end of the day, learning management systems are software programs, so you want to make sure you can access the proper back-end support should you come across any bugs or issues with the platform. Finding an LMS that has a good reputation and a quality customer service department can ensure that your platform remains running smoothly and functional at all times. 

Final Thoughts on Learning Management Systems

Finding an LMS that checks all your boxes and makes employee training simple cannot be understated. Therefore, restaurants should consider only the best and most flexible learning management system that can be curated exactly to fit the needs of the organization.

For the standard in learning management systems, look no further than Retention360’s Retention360 HQ platform. 

Why You Need to Invest in Employee Training

As the effects of the pandemic ease, restaurant management teams continue to seek out ways to attract and retain employees and keep them engaged in their positions. Among the many tactics restaurant owners take to maintain a steady workforce, like offering bonuses or benefits, there is another avenue they can take to keep their employees happy and productive. 

Investing in employee training programs is a key way for restaurants to ensure their employee base is operating at the best of their abilities and feel well-equipped to engage their full potential.

Not only does good employee training have direct implications on the restaurant’s workforce, but it can also contribute to the business’s reputation and the customer experience they provide to patrons. With a well-trained workforce, restaurants are better able to retain their talent, stay ahead of the competition, and retain valuable trade information that tenured employees hold. 

It goes without saying that the employment market to attract and keep restaurant employees remains highly competitive. With many businesses in the industry suffering from a seemingly endless cycle of recruit, hire, train, repeat, many restaurants are seeking the edge that will make them appear more attractive than competitors and help them retain talent.

So aside from the reasons listed above, there are many tangible benefits that restaurants can enjoy by investing in employee training. Continue reading below as we dive deeper into what these advantages are, and then provide some tips on how restaurants can effectively train employees. 

It Helps Restaurants Attract and Retain Talent

A good training program can really make a difference for these businesses. Showing employees that you care about them and are devoted to their career development can go a long way. Plus, providing comprehensive training upfront will make sure to address any hurdles or challenges they’ll face while on the job, keeping them from getting frustrated and feeling unprepared by management.

With a good reputation for treating employees well, you’ll have a better chance of attracting new talent through word of mouth from current employees. 

It Keeps Employees More Engaged

In addition to being great for employee retention and talent recruitment, a good training program can help restaurants keep their employees more engaged on the job. 

Throughout the training process, restaurants have the opportunity to share the mission and goals of the business with new hires, helping them feel more ingrained in the restaurant and devoted to doing good work.

Plus, with a strong understanding of how the business operates and feeling prepared to take on the roles of the job to the best of their abilities, they will stay engaged on the job and understand the importance of their role.

With other opportunities for continued learning and upskilling down the road, employees will feel valued and loyal to their employer and be less likely to search for employment elsewhere. 

It’s a Good ROI for the Restaurant

Another reason that restaurants should be investing in their employee training and development efforts is that it’s simply a good business decision. It’s costly to continually be recruiting, hiring, and training new employees, so restaurants that can nail the training process and boost their employee retention rates will be able to save money over the long run.

Plus, other invaluable elements of doing business as a restaurant like their reputation and customer loyalty may suffer from being short-staffed or having an untrained workforce. Therefore, there is a tangible benefit to training employees well and showing interest in their development on the job. 

Tips for Restaurant Employee Training

Now with a better understanding of why it’s so important for restaurant owners to invest in employee training and prioritize the development of new hires, let’s discuss some tips that management can employ for effective training. 

Make Expectations Clear

Let new hires know exactly what their job duties are, and be clear about other on-the-job expectations like workplace etiquette, dress code, and other elements. New employees can’t read your mind, so be upfront with your expectations to give them a fair chance to impress you with their performance. 

Otherwise, they could end up frustrated and disgruntled if you express disappointment over a behavior or missed task that they weren’t aware of. 

Provide Feedback

An important part of good training is to provide new hires with timely feedback. This allows them to grow and improve based on the mistakes they’re making on the job or other areas for improvement. As we mentioned above, new hires can’t read your mind, so if you’re not providing them with clear ways to improve, you can’t be disappointed if they continue to make the same mistakes.

It doesn’t take long to form habits on the job, so correcting and guiding employees early on will ensure that they come up the learning curve quickly and can meet your expectations. 

Personalize Training for the Employee

No two employees are alike, even if they’re in the same position. So, how you train one new server may differ from how you trained the last. While some will learn better from shadowing current employees, others may prefer to read their job duties in an employee handbook instead.

So don’t be devoted to a one-size-fits-all training method, and allow new hires to shape their training program as it’s permitted. 

Utilize an LMS for Restuarant Employee Training

At the end of the day, a good learning management system (LMS) comes with all the features that restaurant management teams need to effectively administer training efforts to employees, even across multiple locations.

And for the best LMS available to restaurants today, check out Retention 360’s Retention360 HQ platform. Not only does it allow businesses to custom-create training courses to the needs of their operations, but it also provides plan administrators with real-time reporting on employee progress and performance within the course. 


Never settle for a low-quality training program. Invest in the future of your restaurant by investing in your employees–and request a free demo with Retention360 HQ today.