The Park Bistro and Restaurant: Operations and Management

The Park Bistro and Restaurant: Operations and Management

History and Background

            The Park Bistro and Restaurant was launched on 8th June 2015. Before it was established, it used to be a farm for both animals and plants: cattle, sheep, oats, sugar beet, tatties, wheat, and barley. The farm had been under the ownership of the Waddell family since the nineteen twenties. Today, most of the ingredients used in the restaurant are obtained from the farms within its locality.

            The Park Bistro is today housed by a two hundred year old shed that was originally used for cattle shed before its conversion to a store for hay and straw in the 1950’s. The conversion of the cattle shed to the Park Bistro & Restaurant was motivated by the beautiful and calming location of the cattle shed; it lies beside the Union Canal. The owners saw that it was most suitable to turn it into a park and restaurant. The owner’s confidence in the potential for success of the venture was reassured by the rejuvenation of the Union Canal by the British Waterways, connecting it with Glasgow. Tourists, pedestrians, cyclists, and holidaymakers were the target market.

            Being a restaurant and a park, the business operates in the hospitality industry. The restaurant offers a wide range of food and beverages. The restaurant not only offers Scottish cuisines but also offers cuisines from different parts of the world. The park is a recreational facility. The facility is a place for people to stay away from home and work. People who visit the place for recreational purposes are served by the restaurant.  

            The park and restaurant does not have many competitors due to its strategic location and it targets the people who pass or travel by as its market.

The Strategy of the Restaurant

            The vision of the Park Bistro and Restaurant is to become a leading park and restaurant in Europe in the next fifteen years, providing exceptional cuisines while at the same time offering unrivaled recreational facilities.  

            The mission of the park bistro restaurant is to change people’s perception of fast food service. It aims to raise the bars for the hospitality industry in its provision of not only quality and variety of foods, but also the quality of service that is not less than that provided anywhere else. This is achieved by indulging its visitors in the bewitching atmosphere of the beautiful scenery amidst which it is located.

            Some of the core competencies of the hotel are its strategic location (it is located along the Union Canal, the beautiful sceneries around it and its closeness to the Palace of Scottish Kings and Queen which is a tourist attraction. Both travelers and tourists make up it customers) and its use of ingredients obtained directly from the farms around it.  

            The restaurant however acknowledges that there is a potential threat of another restaurant opening nearby and therefore realizes the importance of environmental scanning. It takes care of the situation by upgrading its facilities and improving its services to levels that would not be rivaled by new restaurants if any is set up in nearby.

            Other strategy measures implemented by the restaurant is making sure that the food served is of the highest quality as well as the services offered, and that everything is strictly done in time. It does this by employing competent people and training them intensely before they are officially employed. The restaurants strategy is based on differentiation.

            The Park Bistro and Restaurant finds it hard to quantify how effective it uses its resources (its productivity) because of the service side (table waiting, room service and the like). However, it attempts to estimate it by evaluating customer feedback. Customers have the option of giving their feedback at their will and anonymously if they like.        

Forecasting

            Business forecasting is an attempt to tell the future of the business in terms of the amount of sales the business expects to make, its future expenditure and the profits it expects to make (Stevenson, 2012).

            There are several methods a business can forecast it future. All these methods fall under either of the two major approaches: qualitative and quantitative. Qualitative forecasting is based on the market dynamics. In this method, the future of demand for a particular commodity or service is assessed by either polling a group of potential customers, or seeking the opinion of expertise. In the case of quantitative method, the approach relies on data that is relevant to the particular service or product.

The restaurant employs time-series forecasting. It finds that this is the most appropriate method because the number of its customers tend to vary seasonally-there is usually a higher number during tourist seasons and work holidays than other times. Also the, farm produce is always seasonal (the restaurant gets its ingredients directly from the farms). It keeps a record of the amount of sales it has made as well as the number of visitors it has had. The restaurant attempts to estimate the future values of its time series from the past values of its time series. The Park Bistro also used the feedback it gets from its customers to estimate how many more customers are likely to come, based on the assumption that customers are likely to recommend to other customers.

Product and Service Design

            The Park Bistro and Restaurant offers a wide range of restaurant products and hospitality services. The products are mainly food and beverage, as well as the park’s beautiful scenery. There is also a variety of wines from different parts of the world. There are also relaxation shades and service in terms of table waiting and tour guiding.

            The major factor considered in product and service design is customer satisfaction. The restaurant offers a wide range of food as well as a variety of services, considering that, besides the locals, it also serves tourists of various nationalities and cultures. Accordingly, the restaurant prepares a variety of cuisines. The amount prepared depends on the forecasted number or visitors and their food preference. Besides food, there is also a wide range of wine.

The restaurant also makes sure that the ingredients used for food and even the preparation of the food itself is of the highest quality, as well as the services offered. The ingredients for the restaurants come from the nearby farms. All the ingredients are inspected for quality before they are used and all the measures for efficient food preparation are taken. The restaurant has qualified chefs. Service delivery is also done professionally.

By making sure that the customer is satisfied in terms of variety and quality of food and service, the restaurant becomes competitive and operational costs are also reduced by the rise in number of customers because of the satisfaction they get from the restaurant.

Very little goes to waste. The restaurant donates food that is left but is suitable for human or animal consumption to food banks. The rest of food waste is used to generate biogas which is used for cooking more food. This strategy saves and economizes on the use of energy. The restaurant can for that reason be positioned under maturity.

Capacity Planning

            As with any other business, the Park Bistro and Restaurant faces the challenge of managing the capacity. The number of visitors to the restaurant varies from season to season. This is because the restaurant does not only serve regular people; it also serves tourists and people who are on holiday. Hence, the number of customers tends to vary seasonally.

            The challenge is that during low seasons, many resources are underused, while during high seasons, there is a shortage of capacity to accommodate all the visitors. Currently, the Park Bistro and Restaurant’s capacity cushion is less than zero. It has to turn away customers during high seasons. To take care of the problem, it has been expanding its capacity. The expansion includes not only the facilities and the amount of food prepared but also the size of the work force. During the high seasons, the Park Bistro and Restaurant employs college students on part time and temporary basis. It has been realized that many facilities remain unused during the low seasons. The Park Bistro and Restaurant lowers it prices to attract customers from nearby.

            The restaurant has adequate number of table and front of house waiting shade in addition to a mobile application. These helps avoid turning away of customers. If customers come when tables are full, they can wait at the front of the restaurant. There is an electronic display form of communication that determines who came before the others. This helps to avoid queuing. The restaurant also has a mobile application that potential customers can use to see if there are tables available, and if there are, they can reserve them through the Smartphone application.

            The Park Bistro and Restaurant has no bottlenecks in its operations since every stage depends on the next stage. The capacity can only rise or fall proportionally across all stages.

Process Design

The restaurant used a fixed position layout. Only employees, food and food ingredients move around. That is the only factor relevant to the designing of a restaurant layout. The design of Park Bistro and Restaurant is different to that of most other restaurant. Contrary to the look of modern restaurants in the city, the design takes the visitors on a journey to the countryside. The general outlook of the building and facilities resemble those of countryside houses in the years before the war. Most of the visitors to the restaurant are usually city workers. A visit at the place to the place is like a visit to the country-a break from the city. Additionally, the place is surrounded by beautiful sceneries, creating a relaxing atmosphere.

            The process design used in the restaurant is that of batch shops. The quantity of food prepared and the availability of service varies with demand. Furthermore, food is prepared and served intermittently according to whether a customer places and order.

Food preparation begins with the obtaining of ingredients fro the farms and ends with the serving of the food to the customers. The quality of the ingredients is verified before the chefs prepare the food. Chefs in the kitchen are required to observe all the protocols of the kitchen. Food preparation is organized. The quality of the ingredients before use is always checked and all stale ingredients are thrown away.

The waiters have polite language skills and good anger management. They also have excellent social skills. The waiters know that waiting tables is more than just taking the orders and delivering the food; the process by which the food is delivered and the conversations between the waiter  and the customers is also an aspect they have taken into account.

Location

The Park Bistro and Restaurant is located in Scotland, in the United Kingdom, just outside the Linlithgow. Linlithgrow is fifteen miles away from Edinburgh. A tourist attraction, the royal palace of Scottish Kings and Queens, is located in Linlithgrow. The tourists visiting the site always stop by to enjoy a meal in the restaurant.

In addition to the palace, the restaurant is located along the Union Canal. Transportation means is by boat taking place in the canal, between Linlithgrow basin and Falkirk Wheel. Transportation along the canal is most cases done for pleasure. For that reason, it is easy for visitors to stop by and enjoy food in the restaurant. In addition to the canal and the tourist attraction feature, the place has beautiful scenery.

Apart from the tourists, there are cyclists and pedestrians in the area. The pedestrians and cyclists stop by to take meals and fast foods at the restraint.

The restaurant is also accessible by road and water. There are paths for pedestrians, lanes for cyclists and motorists, roads for vehicles and the canal provides transport by water. The Park Bistro and Restaurant is accessible by all these means. The restaurant also has a large ample parking lot for cars, bicycles, and motorcycles.

The location is suited for the restaurant, given that its target market is not the same as the market targeted by other restaurants. The restaurants only targets passersby and tourists who come to visit the area. People pass by or visit the area for their own reason and find themselves making use of the park and restaurant. Besides facing competition, owing to its strategic location the restaurant enjoy a customer base.

Quality and Quality Control

All employees of the restaurant are expected to take part in the improvement of the restaurant’s quality of goods and services. The ingredients for use in the kitchens are expected to be of quality and also the staff employed is also expected to be efficient and professional.

The restaurant’s fast measure is to make sure that the quality of ingredients is unquestionable. The ingredients are obtained fresh from the farms around the restaurant and inspected for defects before being approved for use in the kitchens. There are also proper storage facilities for ingredients to stop them going bad. Wines and other beverages are also bought from trusted suppliers and inspected to ascertain their quality before being accepted in the restaurant.

The restaurant has a program for certifying the quality of food. The restaurant has a set of practices in place that it uses to ensure that food is being prepared, handled, and served in a high standard. This ensures that the company remains competitive by benchmarking the required quality.

The restaurant also has measures in place to make sure that the quality of service its customers receive is high. All new potential employees are taken through intense training before they are allowed to work. The restaurant also offers stress management for its staff, in the belief that to provide quality service, the staffs need to be in good mental state

The restaurant uses cause and effect tool. Whenever a problem of quality occurs its effect will be observed. The restaurant’s management then tries to trace back the cause of the problem. If the cause is found, the situation is corrected to restore quality.

Conclusions

The Park Bistro and Restaurant has the advantage of strategic location. The presence of the Union Can and it close proximity to the Scottish Kings and Queens Palace gives it an advantage over other restaurants. Given that, its target market is travelers and tourists, who can stop there anytime; it does not have to invest so much in promoting itself.

The park and restaurant has the vision of becoming a leading restaurant in Europe and the mission changing people’s perception of fast food. Its operations concerning its pursuit of the mission and vision however, do not seem robust enough to meet the goals within the fifteen years time. Besides focusing solely and improving the quality of food and accommodation, it is recommendable that they market themselves and expand into other areas.

The restaurant manages quality and control very well. It has not made assumptions of its staff. It trains new staff in what they would be expected to be already familiar with. This system is not only good for the quality of the final product and service; it also improves the productivity of the staff. It also makes sure that the quality of the ingredients and food serviced is high as both the staff as well as the management, occasionally examines it. The use of fresh farm products is a good option for the quality of the food and the health of its customers.

The family owns the business, thus occupying senior management. Operations may not be best managed by family members. There may be better skilled people who could run the park and restaurant better than the family members. It is recommendable that, while retaining ownership, the responsibility of the management placed on people based on qualification and management skills rather than whether or not they are family members.

Finally, the restaurant has a high standard of process design. It has taken care of all areas from the outlook of the restaurant and recreational park to the delivery of food to the customer. The structures and furniture create the ambience of a countryside home that city workers and tourists rarely experience. The ingredients for food are fresh from the farms. The cooking and serving of food is also up to the standards.  

 Referenc

 

Evans, M. K. (2003). Practical business forecasting. Oxford: Blackwell Publishers.

Stevenson, William (2012) Operation’s management: theory and practice (11th ed.). McGraw-Hill.