Is Facebook Workplace the Employee Intranet That Restaurants Need?

Facebook Workplace looks like a simple, inexpensive way to improve internal communication in your cafe, bar or restaurant. It has that very familiar interface – who doesn’t understand likes, photo posting, events and the newsfeed, and it runs out of a separate app. You don’t use your personal Facebook profile to sign-in, that’s done with a new company-based identity.

Here’s the official Facebook explainer and of course there’s a ton of helpful information on the Facebook Workplace site.

I recently heard a very enthusiastic endorsement of the product by the General Manager of Club Med ANZ – you can hear her talk about it on the Tourism Upgrade podcast, and also in this video.

Update: another interesting article on a company’s experience with Workplace over 6 months.

Issues to consider, for and against:

  • Familiar look & feel means posting is more likely – one of the biggest drawbacks with non-standard intranet sites is that they are ignored.
  • Low cost – USD $3 p.p. per month, with a free version that’s ad-supported. That’s a lot or a little according to the value you place on this type of communication.
  • Does not have the other features needed in a full-featured employee site eg document storage, policy explanations, communication options. That would still be needed.
  • You’re using ‘rented land’ instead of your own site – Facebook has a habit of making changes to all it’s properties, and you get no say in it.
  • Private discussion groups can be set up for selected members , if needed.

Definitely worth exploring – maybe with a small group of employees who would give honest feedback and champion it if you went ahead…

Preparing for RU OK? Day on Thursday 14th September

The momentum for RU OK? Day is growing each year, and with the recent focus on mental health in the hospitality industry, particularly with chefs, we will be highlighting the issues and suggested solutions over the next few weeks. And it’s not just for one day – the RU OK? themes are important all the year round.

The action steps are simple: Ask, Listen, Encourage Action, Check In. This is working on the individual level, and there are also many things that can be done in the workplace to make it less stressful and more supportive.

Here are some Profitable Hospitality podcasts that may be helpful for you or your staff – listening to something privately can be a great first step…

50 Things You Can Control Right Now…

If you turn on the news, it’s easy to feel helpless and despondent. Or maybe things at home aren’t going in the best direction.

This great list reminds us of all the things that we CAN control right now – here are a few that jumped out for me:

Whether you listen or wait to talk (I’m working on that…)
The type of food you eat.
How much time you spend trying to convince people you’re right.
How clean or uncluttered you keep your space.
How much information you get before you make a decision.
How many negative articles you read.
Which commitments you keep or cancel.

Check the list and share with friends and family…


Tech Trends in China, and What they Mean for Foodservice and Payments

China leapfrogged the PC era to go mobile-first – the smartphone is the “remote control” of people’s lives, with messaging/operating-system and payment platforms like WeChat and Alipay at the centre of most daily transactions.

Watch this startling, intense video (24 minutes, but stay with it) about China’s online-to-offline commerce and payments, the creation of on-demand marketplaces and the use of QR codes. Plus new forms of social-mobile communication, from livestreaming to stickers to VR cafes that handle your entertainment needs. I was watching the references to payments and foodservice – you’re sure to see other possibilities.

And… this is a country with an extraordinary degree of political repression, and has its internet cut off from the rest of the world…