The foodservice industry is one of the most consistently popular and resilient industries in existence. Everything from fast food up to the highest Michelin star restaurants, there is something for everyone. And as the changing digital world affects the high-street as more and more people move to purchase online, restaurants remain full to the brim. And opening a restaurant can be one of the most fulfilling and rewarding ventures anyone can undertake. Whether your passion lies with food or business, opening a restaurant is always a good idea. But it is also one of the most difficult ventures you can undertake. So below I will be highlighting the top 5 things you need to make sure you have handled before you step into the foodservice industry.

The Paperwork

Before you put anything down on a menu or even start whipping up your dishes, you need to make sure you have all the busy work done. Running a restaurant is more than just the food you make. You will be buying equipment and furniture. Hiring staff and creating contracts. Taking out restaurant insurance and getting your certificates in health standards. So let’s break this down.

Firstly you want to get the more important factors looked into. Insurance is the big one. You will want to make sure you are covered against all eventualities, including fire and crime, so finding good coverage is vital. Next, you will need to apply for your COOSH certificate which allows you to keep and use chemicals on site. These will be needed for cleaning. You will also need to make sure you have someone who is first aid trained on-site, so it is wise to take the course yourself and look into buying a course package for your staff. Hiring a lawyer to write up your staff contracts is a good idea and then you can get to the fun part of decorating, which leads to the next aspect.

The Look

When it comes to the food industry, the look is almost as important as the food. People don’t want to be eating in a shabby and bland looking room. They want to soak up the atmosphere. They want their dinner to be an experience. That is what you need to present to them. An experience. To that end, you need to know what style of food you are creating. Italian? Thai? French? It could be an idea to lean into the culture you are cooking and decorate around that. Or if your food is less cultural and more type-specific then you may want to simply create a relaxing, family environment. If the mood you want to achieve is high dining or romance, look at going for deeper reds and candles. This is an important decision so you will want to plan, plan and plan. And always make sure your menu melds well with your look. Which leads to the next part.

The Menu

Your menu will be your main attraction. If you are a chef then you will most likely be creating this menu yourself. If you aren’t you will want to make sure your head chef is creating something tasty and affordable. You will want to know the tastes you are trying to present to your customers. But the biggest piece of advice is this: keep it simple. Do not create a menu with thirty or so options. Focus on creating a smaller selection of starters, mains and desserts. This will allow your chefs to shine with the dishes, will let your customers decide quicker and they will always have an amazing experience. It is important to keep things fresh with the food, this goes for both the ingredients and the menu. Don’t be afraid to make daily or weekly specials that change. It will let frequent diners have something to look forward to and will flex your restaurant’s skill.

Staff

When it comes to the food industry, while the chefs are the heart of the operation, they cannot work alone. You will have a variety of staff member working for you. Everything from waiters to dishwashers. And all of them are as important as the other. Your waiters will be the face of your restaurant, so it is vital you find people who are positive, friendly but also resilient. Customer service can be a tough industry and those working in it will need thick skin. Also, you will want a Kitchen Porter who is hardworking and consistent. A kitchen without a functioning dishwashing station will not function. You need to make sure your staff know the menu, know the prices and know-how the restaurant functions so they can be as productive as possible.

Drinks

This is an important aspect of the menu, so important it requires its own section. Drink goes with food as a fish goes with water. Everyone from the casual diner to the wine expert loves a tipple with their meal. So you need to make sure you have a varied and solid selection. Don’t be afraid to ask a wine expert on some choices that can pair with your menu. And make sure you have a selection of other alcohols and spirits available. On top of all this, you will need to have non-alcoholic alternatives for children and non-drinkers as well.

Starting your own business is an extremely fulfilling and fantastic experience. It gives you the freedom to work for yourself and expand your business skills and personal confidence. But money, sadly, does not grow on trees. Most people these days are on a budget and do not have endless funds to invest in their own company. But not every business needs to break the bank. There are plenty of options for a budding business-savvy individual to dive into when on a budget. Below are just five of those many options.

Clothes

As many things become obsolete, clothes are one of the most consistent and profitable markets on the planet. Ranging from super cheap to expensive, there are clothes for every price range. And it is this upside that makes selling clothes such a viable and safe business idea. Using drop shipping you can reduce costs even more and simply work as a middleman between the customers and the wholesaler. By doing this you will reduce your costs and only have to focus on creating a website/app and investing in marketing and research. And since clothes are so diverse in the price you can pick your target price range.

Tree Surgery

Many people in areas with heavy forestation are constantly looking for a tree trimming service. For those with the tools and the physical ability to get out within the trees, this is perfect. Tree surgery incorporates everything from removing unwanted trees to handling tree diseases. Many keen gardeners often want their trees trimmed to perfection or tree stumps sanded down for decoration purposes. Perhaps you have always had a green thumb and if that’s the case then this would be a perfect business for you. And cost-wise there is very little overhead. Simply investing in the necessary hardware, transport and advertising.

Personalized Crafts

For anyone who is a bit more creatively inclined, this could be the one for you. There has been a massive increase in people selling their crafts online or in marketplaces. Nothing is more personal and unique than something hand-crafted. In terms of cost, this route is fairly cost-effective. You can often charge people for parts and time and simply get in the equipment as and when you need it. This means you don’t need to buy large amounts of stock and risk it going to waste. All you need to do is to make sure you spend a lot of time on your advertising.

Cleaning

Cleaning services are a solid business idea. There are thousands of people with money and a need for a cleaner. You could easily fill that need. All you need to invest in is cleaning supplies and transport and advertising. Once you’ve done that you can start working almost immediately. And a business like this is excellent for word of mouth advertising. Do a good enough job at one house and soon you will have more jobs rolling in. Never underestimate the cleaner.

Painter

This one is simple, yet extremely in demand and highly effective as a business. people are constantly doing interior decoration and not everyone has the time or know-how to tackle the task of painting themselves. This is where you come in. You need to invest in brushes, tarps, ladders and other painting equipment. The client will be paying for the paint which you will buy as and when it is needed, reducing overheads. Again your biggest costs will be transport and advertising. But word of mouth is, again, invaluable in a line of work such as this.