Greatest Compliance Risks for Restaurants


The restaurant business comes with a variety of hidden business risks that can have expensive repercussions. Compliance – or the lack of it – is among these risks. All businesses face compliance risks, and some more than others. Here are some of the greatest compliance risks for restaurants.

Food Safety

Restaurant industry experts estimate that a foodborne illness outbreak can cost a business about $75,000. While the rest of the country watches news reports about food safety breaches and worries about their own health, most restaurant managers think, “How can I stop that from happening at my restaurant?” The good news is that with the right food handler training, you can reduce the risk of being impacted by a foodborne illness outbreak.

Staff Conduct

Whether you like it or not, you are responsible for the behavior of your employees. This puts your restaurant at risk if any employee behaves badly.  Harassment in the workplace can open your business up to increased staff turnover, customer service issues, and devastating lawsuits. To minimize this risk, you must have clear policies in place to prevent harassment and encourage reporting of inappropriate behavior.

Accidental Injuries

Every business has a responsibility to keep their employees and their customers safe. In restaurants, employees are at particular risk for cuts, burns, slips, and falls. Employees and guests face safety risks related to other types of accidents in or outside the restaurant. Prevention is key.

Alcohol Sales

If you’re like most full-service restaurants, you rely on alcohol sales to make a profit. With those sales, comes a responsibility to serve according to federal, state, and local laws. Serving one underage or intoxicated guest could be the end of your restaurant. Employees need to understand their responsibilities with regard to responsible alcohol sales, and you need to always keep compliance training measures current and enforced.

Consumer Data Risks

As your guests continue to use credit and debit cards more than any payment method, your risk of being the target of credit card fraud increases. As a restaurant manager, you need to take preventative measures to keep your business – and your guests’ credit card data – safe and secure.

How to Reduce Compliance Risks

As a manager, you play an essential role in reducing the risk of non-compliance.. Employee training on compliance topics is critical. Online training is the best first step, followed by on-the-job training, refresher courses, and ongoing mentoring. Click here to browse our compliance training topics.

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