When working in the front of the house in a restaurant there are so many things to do and without proper walkthroughs or checklists, you can easily forget one or two things even if you are a seasoned professional. I certainly know how it can be and for that reason, I have made this list so you can ensure that everything will be done in a more reliable way.
In order to open and close the front of the house properly, you will need to be organized and prepare the opening on the previous day. You will also need to be efficient because there are so many things to do and if you can’t do it efficiently, there’s no way that you will make it in time.
Without further due let’s start this article and be sure to download the checklists so you can place them in the restaurant for all to see and benefit from! First, opening!
Front of House Opening Checklist
Below you will find all the essential tasks for opening the restaurant so you can be assured that you won’t fall back because something was forgotten earlier that day. P.S Feel free to download our checklist below!
Preparing & Cleaning
- Turn on the lights
- Replace chairs to their position
- Ensure that the chairs and tables are sturdy
- Place menus on the table
- Set up the table setting
- Fill the water pitchers
- Turn on the coffee maker or Brew coffee
- Prepare the beer taps and soda machine
- Bake/Prepare the needed foods
- Put out daily newspaper and magazines
- Check the trash bins that they are empty
- Inspect bathrooms and make sure all is full
- Refill receipt paper
- Restock table addons (nuts, seeds, sugar, ketchup, etc.)
- Refill the coffee machine
- Sign in to work
- Turn on the POS system
- Check daily reservations and special requests
- Communicate with the kitchen
- Take out the stand or flip the ”closed” sign to ”open”
Front of House Closing Checklist
Now that the day was successful and it’s time to close, there are many things to remember so that everything will be safe at night and that its’ comfortable to come in the next day. Again, you can download the checklist below!
- Bring back the stand or flip the ”open” sign to ”closed”
- Clean the tables and chairs
- Place chairs on top of tables
- Wipe all the surfaces
- Remove and clean the safety mats
- Pull up grates and clean the spills underneath
- Sweep & mop the floor
- Replace the safety mats
- Clean the coffee maker
- Empty the water pitchers
- Clean the soda machine and beer taps properly.
- Seal all the open wine bottles
- Clean the pouring spouts from alcohol bottles
- Wipe the menus and checkbook
- Polish glasses and cutlery
- Clean the bathrooms
- Empty all the trash bins and replace fresh bags
- Take out the trash
- Turn off the dining room & bar lights
- Restock napkins, straws, spice shakers, and all the server items
- Refill the bathroom items
- Make sure that the coffee machine is full
- Fill the fridges with required beverages
- Fill the bar (liquor, mixers, beer kegs, etc.) & Take inventory
- Restock all the bar garnishes
- Make sure that the next morning shift knows about necessary information
- Lock all the cabinets with valuable items inside
- Turn off the POS system
- Make sure that the machines are off
- Double-check the fridge and freezer doors
- Lock the doors when you leave
- Make sure that everyone got tipped properly
- Count the funds
- Check the necessary daily reports
- Lock the register and store it in a safe location behind a lock
Most of the steps in the lists are perhaps more than familiar to you and some of them are useless for you, nonetheless, a checklist where to cheat from and see that everything is actually done is a huge help!
Remember to keep everything as clear as possible with the least steps that you can do, this way you will have a much easier time remembering and staying efficient through the whole process and you might even leave a little early every single day!
P.S If you wish to design your own checklist feel free to download our template below!