The Importance of Employee Uniforms

 In Bar and Restaurant

When it comes to first impressions, appearances make a big difference. This is extra true in the restaurant world! Many restaurants know that uniforms can have a big impact on customers. Proper grooming standards are also important. After all, who wants their food served by someone with long, jagged fingernails, wrinkled clothes, or dirty hands?

But why are employee uniforms so important?

They reflect your brand.

Your brand should be visible in every aspect of your restaurant—your food, your menus, your decor, and your employee uniforms! Uniforms are just another way to show customers what your restaurant is all about. Whether you’re a casual restaurant with silly sayings on the backs of t-shirts or an upscale restaurant where servers wear ties, uniforms help set the tone.

They make it easy to see who’s an employee.

If a customer needs something, how will s/he flag down an employee if they’re all dressed differently? You certainly don’t want your customers to accidentally ask another diner for a refill! Uniforms make it easy for customers to spot employees at a glance.

They instill pride in employees.

When uniforms look great and fit well, they make employees feel proud of their jobs. This is one reason to make sure your uniforms aren’t embarrassing or ill-fitting. After all, who feels good when they’re wearing baggy shirts or goofy-looking hats? If your employees know they look great and professional, they’re more likely to feel proud to work at your restaurant.

They create a professional environment.

Your employees probably have very different backgrounds and lifestyles, but when they put their uniforms on they’re all part of the same team. Uniforms can help create a professional environment and can help employees get in the right frame of mind to do a great job.

They inspire customer confidence.

Your food and your service might be great, but for many customers, the appearance of servers makes a big difference. Simply put, uniforms make your employees look reliable and trustworthy. This lets customers know that they can count on your employees to do their jobs right.

So what about personal grooming?

What sort of standards should you hold your employees to? Some of the most basic ones are pretty obvious…hair that’s styled or held back so that it doesn’t get into customers’ food, neat and trimmed nails, and no dangling jewelry. These are all important because they influence the food and the quality of service. Customers feel better about being served by people who are visibly clean. However, there are also some standards that will vary by restaurant. How do you feel about visible tattoos and piercings? This probably depends on your restaurant! If you’re a casual restaurant, you might not care if your employees have unique tattoos and piercings. However, a fine dining restaurant might have a different opinion. It all depends on your brand and the message you want to send to your customers.

Although uniforms look different at each restaurant, there’s no denying that appearances are important! The right uniforms—and the right grooming—can define your brand, mark employees, inspire employee pride, create a professional environment, and inspire customer confidence.

Showing 4 comments
  • Joel Siddall

    From a brand perspective uniforms are another customer touch point, so well designed uniforms which place prominence on the companies image are one of the steps to building a solid brand.

  • Eric Rylander

    This is a great post, Buzztime. I work every day at helping restaurants improve their employee uniform, and you have mentioned at least 5 great points about the value of a uniform! Great point about the feeling of professionalism and ready-to-work! There are at least 5 other good reasons to mention:
    – A uniform helps maintain hygene and a noticeably clean garment (Sometimes it’s hard to tell if that old shirt is SUPPOSED to look like that!)
    – Customers tend to focus on faces and smiles when servers are dressed in uniform. This creates a better connection with staff and makes experiences more memorable.
    – Companies that embrace economical uniform programs create a valuable benefit for employees and offset (either partially or wholly) a real expense.
    – Uniforms can be a walking advertisement OUTSIDE of work. While driving/walking/riding to and from work, people notice! Think about how many times you’ve worn a logo shirt and it started a conversation. All those little connections add up.
    …and finally…
    – Uniforms make it a lot easier to get ready for your shift! No more trying to decide what to wear.
    I’d be glad to consult with any restaurant company considering adding a uniform program or upgrading an existing one. – Eric Rylander; Twitter: @RylanderBrander

  • Marry Lauren

    Hey it is really a wonderful blog .I am agree with you that you mention the importance of uniform ,Uniform make us feel professional.It also easier for us to ready for the job.

  • Reply

    Uniforms are intended to precisely speak to your image and your image idea.

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