Bouncing back – often, this means reopening for business – after a health code violation is one of the hardest situations a restaurant owner will ever have to face. Undergoing a violation of this kind can be an owner’s worst nightmare.
However, if you follow a half dozen or so simple procedures, methods that have stood the test of time, a restaurant can fully recover and even gain customers, over the long run.
The first step in a road to recovery is to not rush into the “clean up plan” without thinking. As an expert cleaning company that specializes in violation recovery, we recommend that you take time to examine the specific violation(s). The best way to fix any problem is to fully grasp what led to that problem in the first place. Was it from sloppy employee practices, defects in the kitchen, defects left unattended by the original building contractor, or was it caused by any number of other issues?
If you have the necessary funds, the best solution to your problem, would be to hire a cleaning consultant who specializes in health code violations. They can not only assist you with the actual remedy, but they can put together a plan to minimize future damage to your reputation in regard to cleanliness.
As you put your plan together you will need to work along with the inspector who filed the violation. You certainly have nothing to gain by working against him, because this person holds power over your business. Make him angry and you could face the closure of your business, or at least face more red tape, if you don’t cooperate. You should ask questions of the inspector, make yourself available to further inquisitions on his part, and show a willingness to take all his recommendations seriously.
Also, make sure you and your staff don’t fall short or take “half measures,” which is any approach that doesn’t finish the task to the best extent. For instance, if the violation sites pests or rodents, you should do enough research on local pest control companies to hire one you can fully trust. The same could be said where new equipment is needed to replace faulty products. A professional installer should be brought in to make sure the new equipment will work safely and properly.
Finally, in the case of an unsanitary condition leading to the violation, there is no short-cut for good, old-fashioned “elbow grease.” The entire staff should care enough about the future of the business to roll up their sleeves and go after areas of unclean appearances. This can range from grease build up in corners to wiping off shelves in the pantry or back storage areas. If the inspector notices how clean the entire space has become, it will likely leave a favorable impression as he leaves the restaurant and considers whether to remove the violation.