Rapid growth mode can be a double-edged sword for restaurant brands. Obviously, expansion is a result of success—but hiring, training, and retaining staff in the current labor landscape presents operators with a monumental challenge. In order to provide a consistent guest experience, it’s critical to get new employees up to speed as quickly as possible.
Fast-casual franchisor Teriyaki Madness—which is on track to open 32 new stores in 2022 and 60 in 2023—offers delicious, made-to-order teriyaki bowls and apps that they warn are highly addictive. The huge bowls are prepared with fresh, all-natural ingredients and craveable house-made sauces. Guests can enjoy their bowls in the shop, or order through the mobile app for delivery or pickup.
“Because Teriyaki Madness is a 100-percent franchised company, we must ensure that our standards, specifications, and recipes are readily available and easily accessible to our franchisees,” says Jules Langston, manager of training and development at Teriyaki Madness.
To do that, Teriyaki Madness uses PlayerLync, a mobile training and development platform that equips teams with training, communications, and productivity tools via an easy-to-use mobile app. PlayerLync ensures that every employee has the personalized and timely information they need to do their job whenever they need it—even offline. It automatically refreshes content to and from approved mobile devices, even without a consistent Wi-Fi connection, so employees never have to manually check for updates or wait for content to load. Unlike paper-based employee training programs, PlayerLync distributes learning materials to all employees in real time, ensuring everyone is given the opportunity to quickly access new information via quizzes, training videos, and much more.
“Employees don’t want to be presented with a huge binder filled with reams of paper,” Langston says. “PlayerLync has been a game-changer in terms of engagement because it hits several learning styles—visual, auditory, and kinesthetic.”
For example, a line cook can access recipes, food prep videos, or a demo on how to properly flip a wok, while cashiers are trained on customer-facing skills and menu items. Nothing can replace the value of human interaction—PlayerLync simply augments interpersonal communication and side-by-side training. Teriyaki Madness employees have responded positively to this well-rounded training.
“People leave jobs because they are frustrated by their lack of knowledge, which translates into low confidence in their abilities to perform their job,” Langston says. “I like to call PlayerLync the ‘Great Equalizer’ because the person walking in the door is provided with the opportunity to have the same knowledge base as someone who’s been working there for years. PlayerLync really levels the playing field.”
Since Teriyaki Madness is in strong growth mode, PlayerLync plays an essential role in getting staff up to speed quickly.
“Franchisees hire staff two to four weeks out,” Langston says. “Once the new store training team leaves, PlayerLync takes over as the primary method of disseminating information to new team members. It allows employees to easily access training to stay informed about new menu items, LTOs, and service procedures. It’s easy to use and has revolutionized training engagement.”
Teriyaki Madness has more than 125 U.S. locations plus locations in Mexico and Canada, with franchising opportunities nationwide for qualified single and multi-unit candidates. For more information on franchising, visit franchise.teriyakimadness.com.
To learn more about how PlayerLync can improve your training program, visit the PlayerLync website.
By Davina van Buren