Chasing the potential issues that may face the customer and the staff in any restaurant, it appeared that floor space has the lowest percentage of complaints and feedback. However, when applying the 80/20 rule of Pareto principle as a lean sigma methodology- according to Simon. K. (n.d.) – it indicates that this problem with the lowest percentage of complaints and feedback is the cause of every other problem that may face customers and staff in the restaurant.
Accordingly, to eliminate any issues in your restaurant you need to start with a suitable and well-designed floor layout. In this article, we will show you how to create the perfect restaurant’s floor space plan that makes complete use of the available area.
Space planning guideline:
As the first step in planning your floor space, the New York foodservice publication “Total Food Service” recommends that the dining room shall comprise 60% of the total space, where the other facilities constitute the remaining 40%, which is also known as the general rule of thumb.
The entrance of your restaurant should be welcoming, as it gives the customer the first impression of the restaurant he is entering. Here are some factors you need to take into consideration when designing your entrance:
- Making the customer curious to try your restaurant.
- Reflecting your restaurant’s concept and vision.
- Allowing your staff to welcome your customers.
- Well-maintained & easy to open.
The Dining room:
This is where your customers should feel comfortable, as they spend 98% of their time in this area. This area includes:
- The waiting area: this area should have enough space for customers where they could comfortably wait for their tables. The small station should be 6-10 square feet that are suitable for 20 customers, where the large one should be 25-40 square feet for 60 customers.
- The takeaway counter: this might be an addition to the waiting area when crowded.
- The seating area: there should be 3-4 ft. between every dining table to avoid disturbance and traffic and to ensure safety and allow servers to move freely. It should be designed to have the maximum number of tables you could get which will affect your tables’ turnover. This area could be divided into 2 areas:
- The window area: for small 2-person tables.
- The area in the middle: for medium and large tables according to the number of diners.
- The POS and billing station: this area should allow the maximum rate of efficiency with the minimum staff members moving back and forth between the payment stations.
You have to know that the kitchen is the heart of your restaurant. A well-designed kitchen will allow an efficient and effective workflow. The kitchen shall comprise the following areas:
- Working zone: for cooking, preparing, food assembly, packing, and washing.
- Stocking zone: for cooking equipment and cold and dry food storage.
- Moving zone: for enabling the kitchen staff to move comfortably, smoothly, and efficiently, and for eliminating accidents.
- Ventilation: for ensuring a healthy environment.
- Staff restroom: for your employees to take rest.
You can choose one of these layouts for your kitchen:
- Assembly line configuration: geared to keep staff among specific workplaces to reduce movements between stations resulting in more organized workflow and fewer mistakes in preparing orders.
- Zone-based configuration: the kitchen here is divided into stations; meal cooking, food preparation, service area, storage & receiving, and cleaning & washing area.
- Island configuration: the cooking station is in the middle and every other station surrounds it.
- Ergonomic configuration: aimed to allow maximal employee efficiency by giving the kitchen staff the opportunity to design the kitchen the way they like. It can be useful in restaurants with a high number of orders.
You may place restrooms near the kitchen area to save money by tying into nearby plumbing and water lines.
Consider the following points when designing restrooms:
- They should be accessible and visible for all customers without getting confused.
- They should be accessible and suitable for customers with special needs.
- It should contain sanitation facilities.
- It should be wide enough for customers.
- It should have a comfortable lightening.
The prayer room:
It is essential to have a wide and suitable prayer room in your restaurant so that your customers would not be wondering where to pray when it is time to pray.
Your restaurant’s floor space plan demonstrates the workflow of the whole operations in your restaurant. Having the perfect floor space plan enables your staff to work comfortably and your customers to dine comfortable, enjoying their meals.