Four Strategies Offered by College Dining Consultants Clarion Group to Help Schools Improve the Appeal of Their Food Services Options

College food service operators face an array of challenges in responding to the evolving needs of students and school faculty. They must continually add to their services suite in order to engage these customers and enhance their revenues. Often, many food services vendors find themselves focused on simply delivering a standard level of service rather than approaching declining sales figures with strategic forethought. And so many food services teams work with college dining consultants to bring a greater return for their business. Here, the experts at Clarion Group outline four strategies school food services providers can employ to ensure greater profit margins.

1. Introduce Wi-Fi Areas

Students are often short on time and have multiple classes to fit around their lunch schedule. They will likely want to spend some of their lunch time reviewing course work online and maybe even writing while they eat. The modern student is used to fitting their eating and drinking habits around their studying schedule. Schools that implement strong wireless networks within their cafeterias will likely see an increased numbers of students using their food services vendors.

2. Quick Service

To compensate for the students’ lack of time, food service vendors can also concentrate on adding efficiency to their service processes. Students are often put off vendors when they see long lines of people waiting for their food. It’s a leading reason why they’re more likely to turn to the fast food vendor offering unhealthy meals rather than the vendor offering a carefully prepared healthy meal for the same price. Strategies to improve the speed of service could be as simple as employing more staff or reviewing student class schedules and responding to fluctuations in demand throughout the day with effective staffing systems. Companies can also streamline their food preparation processes to help eliminate bottlenecks in service.

3. Exhibition Cooking Areas

Another strategy college dining consultants will often advise their clients to utilize is the use of exhibition cooking areas. The attraction of seeing the food being made could help boost flagging visitor numbers for a broad range of food service operations. It’s one of the main attractions at sushi restaurants across the country. Showing the food being made by the professional will also appeal to the student or facility member’s sense of curiosity. It’s important that the exhibit areas don’t detract from the service efficiency. But when implemented correctly, it’s an addition that can drive the number of customers considerably higher.

4. New Organic Options

Due to the renewed focus on organic foods in recent years, many students are becoming savvy about the types of items they consume. Vendors serving high quality, organic food items are becoming ever-more popular at campuses across the country. These vendors can also appeal to those with specific nut and gluten allergies to further increase their customer-base.

Re-engaging students with their school’s food service can be a persistent challenge for service providers. But simple, cost-effective changes can make a surprising impact when implemented effectively. To learn more, speak with a specialist at the Clarion Group. College dining consultants with many years of industry experience are available now.

Talk to us about your vision for your food service operation — Contact Clarion Group

Food Service Consultants
P.O. Box 158,
Kingston, NH 03848-0158

Phone: (603) 642-8011   
Fax: (603) 642-7744

Offering food service management consulting, hospitality services consulting, sustainable dining facility design. Nationwide food service consultants.

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