The restaurant industry is dying - research paper example

The restaurant industry is dying and no one seems to talk about the reasons why this is. Every year, hundreds of restaurants close their doors for the same recurring reasons and it is not getting better. For restaurant owners, it is a constant battle for business and profit. The growing competition of fast food chains and sheer inflation of restaurants make it almost impossible to stay afloat in the current market. The restaurant industry is the most difficult and challenging business to succeed in the Pacific North West.
There are many things business owners desire but the most sought after and priceless asset to any restaurant is a competent cook. In the current market today, there is not a single restaurant unaffected by the labor shortage. In a recent interview, a local chef named Paul Kahan put his opinion into words by saying; “Ask chefs and restaurateurs around the city, and they will lodge the same complaint: They desperately need cooks in their kitchens.”. The question then remains, "Why is there such a shortage of cooks when the market is so accessible?". There are many reasons for why the Pacific North west is struggling for back of the house labor but the biggest reason is that workers do not feel that the pay off is worth it. Working in a kitchen is one of the most stressful, exhausting, and mentally demanding jobs on the market. On average, cooks make $28,000 to $32,000 a year which is below the national average of income by $26,000 dollars a year. The pay is not only abysmal but cooks almost never receive full breaks or financial benefits. For small business owners, this is all they can afford for their staff. Heidi Mann, a local small business owner from Seattle had this to say; "After Seattle implemented a $15 minimum wage, my business went from having seven employees to three… Now, we're faced with the very real prospect of closing.". Many restaurants are going under because they either can not meet the demand of their customers or they are unable to afford the rising labor costs and inevitably close their doors. For this reason, cooks are now choosing to work for a corporations with benefits or jump kitchen to kitchen for next opportunity that pays a dollar more. Restaurant owners are struggling and the difficulty to own a restaurant establishment becomes more challenging each year.
There is a common saying that competition is good, but for restaurants in Washington State, this couldn't be furthest from the truth. No matter where you are in the Seattle area, there are restaurants of every cuisine and every convenience minutes from you. A local reporter, Monica Guzman had this to say about the growing business; "Seattle has about 2,500 restaurants — 500 more than we had a decade ago — and the number is spiking.". This great influx of restaurants has created too much for customers to choose from which results in most of the lower end businesses not making enough profit to sustain costs. This also has made it difficult for small business owners due to the fact that fast food chains and cooperate giants are taking up most of the business because they can afford proper staffing, equipment, and opening costs. Marketing Analyst Andrew Strelzik from BMO Capital Markets has been making the argument that there isn’t enough room for any more restaurants in Seattle. In one of his points, he states that; "Casual-dining restaurants are having a hard time for several reasons. A growing number of competitors, such as fast casual concepts, have been growing at a breakneck pace. ". One of the ways the corporate business have an advantage over smaller restaurants is the ability to capitalize on the best locations for their service. For the more competitive locations, these cooperations are the only ones who can feasibly afford the locations for rent. Small restaurants then have to be forced to choose a location less desirable for customers. With all of these factors in place, there is too much competition for restaurant owners and the business has become an over saturated market that is more devastating than profitable.
Mismanagement is the core root of almost every restaurants failure and it is a silent epidemic. In the restaurant industry, budgeting is key to success. Keeping track of inventory, food costs percentage, waste, order mistakes, receipts, labor, theft, and profit is paramount, yet most businesses fail in many of these areas. The most common place of failure is placing an inexperienced person into positions of management. With the lack of workers, restaurants are required to place people in positions of management who are not qualified or even capable of understanding management. Sound to Summit brewing in Snohomish Washington is a great example of how mismanagement turns into loss. The owners had never stepped one foot into the food industry and wanted to make a 1 million dollar investment in their dream restaurant. In the process, they over purchased at opening, placed managers with little experience in positions of power, and had problems as high as mountains due to inexperienced purchasing. The management crew was able to sink the business in a little over two years resulting in bankruptcy. Mismanagement happens under owners noses for years to the point where people are stealing money or the company is being cheated by vendors which brings thousands of dollars in loss over time. Mismanagement leads to poisoning the staff with low motivation, no sense of pride, and no joy or accomplishment. This stems from managers not having interpersonal skills to lead others and create a team effort. This is a challenging factor in running a restaurant and it takes people who are seasoned and experience to catch and prevent these errors.
Out of any business venture there is, the restaurant industry is the most trying and difficult one with challenges most people are not equipped to face. With the lack of cooks, over crowded restaurant density and competition, and simple seeds of mismanagement, it is a steep and fast fall if one is not ready to handle the adversity it takes to succeed. The restaurant industry is more challenging than ever before and only time will tell how these events will shape what we will be eating in the future. Everyone can use to find some inspiration to write academic papers. They have a rich database of assignments on different topics.