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A blog specifically created for RFMA intended to provide pertinent information on protecting company assets.

 

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Top tags: CMMS  HVAC  Roof drains  CRFP  education  daylight savings time  air balance  Benchmarking  irrigation  power outage  RFMA  Spring start ups  Vacation  Vendor management  ADA  Asset management  Coil cleaning  electrical outage  EMS  Facilities  franchisee  frozen pipes  heat exchangers  hurricanes  HVAC PM  irrigation systems  landscaping  negative pressure  night setback  parking lots 

RFMA Events

Posted By Jeff Dover, CRFP, RFMA, Wednesday, August 1, 2018
Updated: Thursday, July 19, 2018

Hello RFMA Members,

A few weeks ago, Jen Rivera and I were at a RFMA Restaurant Roundtable event in Denver at Red Robin's corporate office. It was a great gathering, discussing several restaurant facility topics pertinent to our industry. Following is brief recap:

R&M Cost Controls

- Group discussions on how the members handled the overall R&M spending in their restaurants, notably in maintaining or reducing costs.

- Having good business partners in for your service providers was one key element in controlling and/or reducing costs.

- Proper review of existing service contracts for correct scopes of work, labor/parts charges, frequencies of service etc. All these items need to be reviewed and renegotiated from time to time to ensure your are efficiently and effectively protecting company assets.

- Utilize CMMS, if available, for current asset spending, tracking, etc., then concentrate efforts on high spending equipment.

- Elimination of some PM services was discussed but a few members noted the equipment R&M costs shot up dramatically soon after cutting the service.

- Look at extending warranty terms on some equipment.

- Examine overall warranty procedures to see if there is an opportunity to increase collections.

Equipment Training for Operations

- Create a Facility Manual for store operators to use for troubleshooting and minor repairs to equipment.

- Develop short YouTube type training videos on specific equipment showing proper operation, troubleshooting, cleaning, and repairs.

- Get with manufactures to supply training reference materials to store employees.

- Provide managers education on exactly what services and tasks are to be performed during a service call.

- Tie in equipment training videos to current CMMS showing how to make repairs prior to placing a service request.

Water Management

- The overall water situation in the World is getting critical. It is a limited commodity that requires restaurants to minimize their usage and ensure it is safe.

- Several members noted they have changed their landscaping to comply with minimum water needs.

- Filtration is becoming more and more required due to the increase in chemicals and minerals in the water.

- Factors in proper water management include the type of equipment in the store, i.e., boilers, beverage equipment, steamers, dishwashers, etc.

- Maintenance on water management systems was discussed at length on who is responsible centering on in-house versus outside vendor.

- New water saving equipment is available in irrigation systems, dipper wells, pitcher rinsers, aerators, etc.

RFMA is a wonderful source for continued education in our industry. Their are several upcoming, namely:

- Peer to Peer Call, Aug. 2nd

- Member Meet-Up in Dallas, Aug. 9th

- Restaurant Roundtable in Atlanta, Aug. 14th

- Restaurant Roundtable, Austin, Sept. 7th

Feel free to check these out on our website and register. There's always something to learn in our industry. Any questions or comments, let me know.

Dover and out.

Tags:  operations training  R&M cost controls  restaurant facility education  Roundtable  water management 

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Take Time Off

Posted By Jeff Dover, CRFP, RFMA, Wednesday, July 18, 2018
Updated: Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Hello RFMA members,

Well it's been a record hot summer thus far. Hope your store's A/C's are keeping up. This is normally the time of the year for vacations. With all the responsibilities of a restaurant facilities professional, it's imperative you take time off away from work. Restaurant facilities professionals are basically on call 24/7, 365 days a year. In our industry, there is a real possibility of job burn out. Years and years of being constantly on call dealing with typical restaurant facility issues can, and will beat you down. You must be able to get away from all of it for short periods throughout the year. It is imperative to use your vacation and get totally disconnected. It will not only help you recharge and refresh but your productivity, patience, and attitude will all improve. It's been shown through many work related studies that employees in high pressure positions lose their productivity without any real time off. When taking time off, take time off. No checking email regularly and definitely not answering work phone calls. You'll be easily sucked back into a situation where you'll waste some of your vacation time and whatever the call is about may require additional calls and follow up. Communication prior to your vacation is very important.  Establish strategic back-ups for your projects. Complete "out of office" automatic email notifications. Talk to your supervisor and vendors who may be in the middle of a few of your projects. Let everyone know you are off and not to call.

I know it sounds easier said than done but both you and your organization will benefit from your time off.

Have a safe and wonderful rest of the summer.

Dover and out.



Jeff Dover, CRFP 
Facilities Resource Manager | Restaurant Facility Management Association 
jeff@rfmaonline.com
972-805-0905 ext. 3



Tags:  recharge  time off  Vacation 

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Peer to Peer and Peer to Partner

Posted By Jeff Dover, CRFP, RFMA, Wednesday, July 4, 2018
Updated: Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Hello RFMA Members,

On June 7th, we had a Peer to Peer call on "Kitchen Equipment, Equipment Repair vs Replace, In-House vs Outside Technicians". The call went well with Gene Davis, CRFP, from California Pizza Kitchen moderating and the group was engaged. Discussions on equipment life cycle costs and maintenance training produced several educational opportunities for the participants. Several metrics were noted and talked about for the Repair vs Replace decision making process. Some of these include age of equipment, cost of repair, remaining book value, cost of new, remaining building lease terms, etc. It was noted, some equipment, like water heaters, should be proactively replaced thereby minimizing the chance of a total restaurant shutdown. Who ultimately makes the repair or replacement choice was also discussed. Most on the call noted their facility representatives made the decision. Very few indicated store mangers were responsible for this.The final topic about In-House versus Outside techs concentrated on the pro's and con's to each. The group was in agreement with their stores having lower R&M costs utilizing internal techs but finding and managing them is an added task on the facilities department. Most companies that use their own techs only charge their stores enough to break even for the departmental total costs. Some use their techs for PM tasks only but outside vendors are still needed for all other services.

On June 18th, we had a Peer to Partner call on "Hot Side Equipment PM's and Equipment Break/Fix Decision Making". Shane Brock, CRFP, from Cracker Barrel Old Country Stores was the moderator and this call also was very educational. Discussions on the hot side equipment PM's centered on if they are truly needed and have a payback similar to other equipment PM services. Most on the call do not have PM contracts for this but the ones that do indicated the service definitely had a good payback by lowering overall R&M costs for the specific equipment and better operating performance. Steamers and combi-ovens were specifically noted they need regular PM service due to the incoming water quality and potential liming issues. Daily cleaning and regular maintenance of the equipment must still be completed by restaurant staff even if there is a contract in place. On the Break/Fix discussions, several of the metrics from the Peer to Peer call above were talked about. Having a CMMS in place was also noted to greatly improve the decision making process and timing. Good service provider communication to the customer was discussed as they normally know the piece of equipment overall condition better than anyone. Use their input in the decision.

Both calls provided good input from the participants and great educational material. Check out the event calendar on the RFMA website for future calls. They provide an opportunity to learn on different topics and how your peers take care of these issues. If you have any questions or comments, let me know.

Dover and out.



Jeff Dover, CRFP 
Facilities Resource Manager | Restaurant Facility Management Association 
jeff@rfmaonline.com
972-805-0905 ext. 3


 

Tags:  hot side equipment  in-house technicians  outside vendors  Preventative maintenance  repair versus replacement 

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Summer is Here

Posted By Jeff Dover, CRFP, RFMA, Wednesday, June 20, 2018
Updated: Monday, June 4, 2018

Hello RFMA members,

Well, so much for spring weather. Summer has hit with a vengeance again. It's already been over 100 degrees in Minnesota and it looks like we are in for another long, hot summer. How are your restaurants holding up? Check out the following to ensure your store's are doing the best they can to keep customers and employees comfortable while saving utility dollars.

- When was the last PM completed on the HVAC units? When were the filters changed? Due to the longer run times during the summer, the frequency of filter changes may need to be increased. A well running unit will save utility dollars and ensure customers and employees alike are both comfortable in the restaurant.

- Roofs: Now is the time to check for leaks and clean out all roof drains in preparation of summer storms. Also, pick up any loose screws and other items that could potentially cause a leak if stepped on.

- Parking lot/sidewalks: Check for cracks and possible shifting of underneath soil due to warm, dry weather to ensure there are no tripping hazards. Summer is normally a busy time of the year and preventing any slip/falls is of great benefit. Also, check for proper striping and correct any ADA issues accordingly.

- Carpet/floor cleaning: After a wet spring, have all carpeted areas deep cleaned to remove embedded dirt to provide a safe environment to the customers and employees.

- Tile & grout: Warmer weather will normally increase the humidity and moisture level. Check grout lines to see if they need to be scraped and repaired. This will minimize chance of moisture getting below the tiles, holding mold in check and extend the life of the floor.

 -Doors: Warm weather means pests are active and more likely to enter the facility. Check to ensure sweeps are installed and in good condition.

- Air balance: Check to see the restaurant is somewhat positively balanced, which means when opening an exterior door, a little air rushes out of the building rather than in. This is very important to correct as a negative store will waste energy cooling dollars and make it uncomfortable for guests seated by the doors.

- Building sealing: Check all windows and exterior doors for proper sealing. Recaulk if necessary.

 -Irrigation: Check proper on/off times for exterior irrigation and spray head operation. Replace any broken heads as required.

- For good "branding", replace any stained ceiling tiles which may have been damaged from leaks over the spring

Hot weather is very tough on restaurant facilities. Completing these tasks will protect your brand and assets and hopefully minimize the emergency calls this summer. Have a safe season!

Dover and out.



Jeff Dover, CRFP 
Facilities Resource Manager | Restaurant Facility Management Association 
jeff@rfmaonline.com
972-805-0905 ext. 3

 

Tags:  air balance  HVAC PM's  roofs  tile and grout  Warm weather 

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Educational Calls

Posted By Jeff Dover, CRFP, RFMA, Wednesday, June 6, 2018
Updated: Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Hello RFMA Members,

On Monday, May 21st, we had a Peer to Partner call on "Tax Changes That Affect Restaurant Capital Spending". The call explained the new recently approved changes in capital investment and depreciation as it pertains to the restaurant industry. The new law enables most capital projects to be fully written off (depreciated) in one year rather than amortized over the several years. Companies can save large amount of dollars in tax savings which can then be reinvested in additional capital projects. With this new law, the only real negative is the increased cash flow due to higher than anticipated spending. Discussions then centered on how to spend the newly available funds efficiently to protect the Brand and company assets. Most added projects should be concentrated on safety, high guest impact, and customer/employee comfort items like HVAC's, roofs, lighting, etc. For proper buy in, other internal departments need to be involved in all phases of the initiation and approval process. Restaurant facilities professionals need to be ready to make suggestions and complete projects quickly. To do this, they should have up to date store audit information and projects can be prioritized accordingly with values given from 1-5. Proper ROI analysis is essential in getting facilities projects considered and approved.

It was a good call with great input from the participants. For information on the tax law article, click on the following:

http://www.nrn.com/news/tax-bill-could-pave-way-large-scale-restaurant-renovations

For information on what capital projects are approved, click on the following: http://www.section179.org/property_that_qualifies_for_section_179/.

There are several other Peer to Partner and Peer to Peer calls coming up during the rest of the year. Check out the event calendar on our website. They provide a great opportunity to learn on different topics what your peers do to tackle their opportunities and challenges. These calls are free and only take  up an hour of your time. I highly recommend them.

Any comments, let me know.

Dover and out.


Jeff Dover, CRFP 
 Facilities Resource Manager | Restaurant Facility Management Association 
jeff@rfmaonline.com
972-805-0905 ext. 3



Tags:  capital spending  Tax Changes That Affect Restaurant Capital Spendin 

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Emerging Trends - Smart Buildings

Posted By Jeff Dover, CRFP, RFMA, Wednesday, May 23, 2018
Updated: Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Hello RFMA Members,

Do you know what the term "Smart Building" means? It's been around for about a decade and used frequently in our industry in regards to new and retrofit building technologies that connect facility lighting, HVAC, security, signage, and equipment together in an integrated, dynamic, functional way to minimize energy and maintenance costs. With the time constraints put on restaurant facility managers today, "smart" building systems are an emerging trend that will be a staple in restaurant facility design and operations for a long, long time. I'm currently doing research in preparation of writing my next "Emerging Trends" article for the August/September edition of our Facilitator magazine and would like to partner with a restaurant facility professional or a vendor member that has experience in this area. Looking at what technologies are available, how they are used, and what the ROI is important to everyone who maintains restaurants.

Would like to discuss with possible partners for a story asap. If interested, please contact me direct at jeff@rfmaonline.com or call me at (972) 805-0905, x-3.

Thanks in advance!

Dover and out.


Jeff Dover, CRFP 
Facilities Resource Manager | Restaurant Facility Management Association 
jeff@rfmaonline.com
972-805-0905 ext. 3


Tags:  energy savings  integrated systems  Smart Buildings 

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Disaster Planning

Posted By Jeff Dover, CRFP, RFMA, Wednesday, May 9, 2018
Updated: Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Hello RFMA members,

The hurricane season officially starts June 1st. Are you ready? Is your Disaster Management plan up to date? Do your store Operations team know what to do along with your service providers? This is a good time to formally review your plans, practice them, and make any required changes. We had a great Disaster Management Peer to Peer call last week in discussing how to start a plan, what references to use in creating it, what specific disasters can occur, along with who should be involved and how to practice and modify the plan accordingly. Several types of disasters were identified: Hurricanes, floods, tornadoes, fires, terrorism, power outages, etc. Most of the discussions centered on the Plan as this is the most important item for protecting employees, customers, and company assets. A well developed plan minimizes crucial decision times, which is critical. This blog obviously cannot cover all the requirements but a few items to consider in a comprehensive plan are as follows:

- How to prepare

- Minimizing the effects

- Proper response

- Recovery

Preparing positions your facilities to handle any event by having protection supplies like shutters, plywood, generators, and contractors lined up ready to act. Flash lights, drinking water, first aid kits, 2-way radios, extra cellphone batteries, and spare cash also will come in handy. All great plans will need the input of several internal departments like Operations, Legal, Food Safety, Facilities, etc. The Response and Recovery sections should include who makes on the ground decisions as supplies should already be in place. Prior discussions with local public food safety officials should also be considered as this is a huge potential liability. Obviously the goal is to reopen ASAP so long as the food, facilities, employees and customers are safe.

The plan needs to be practiced periodically to familiarize everyone what is exactly is expected. It can then be revised accordingly. It remains a "living, breathing, document". Also ensure your company has the proper insurance protection as some polices do not include flood or earthquake damage.

There is a large amount of Disaster Management resources available on our website in the Resource Library in the Facilities Toolkit section and there is a Disaster Management Online Learning Module in our CRFP Prep Course. Additionally, there are several great articles in our Facilitator magazine. Check them out. It pays to be prepared.

Dover and out.

 

Jeff Dover, CRFP 
Facilities Resource Manager | Restaurant Facility Management Association 
jeff@rfmaonline.com
972-805-0905 ext. 3

 

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Peer to Partner Call

Posted By Jeff Dover, CRFP, RFMA, Wednesday, April 25, 2018
Updated: Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Hello RFMA members,

Recently we held a Peer to Partner call on the topic of "HVAC and Spring Start Ups". It was a great call with discussions on one of the most important aspects of restaurant facility maintenance. There is some thought throughout our industry that spring PM equipment maintenance may be the single most important item to complete each year. Data reflects how PM's consistently and substantially reduce equipment R&M spending. Chemically cleaning the a/c coils along with belt and air filter replacements are the main tasks for RTU's. Spring is also a good time to check the condition of the heat exchanger as if it needs replacement, it can be budgeted and completed during the warmer months. Roof maintenance discussions were held concerning developing a "roofing checklist" for items to be surveyed once or twice per year. Some restaurants use their own personnel to complete while others use a handyman, local roofer, or even their HVAC service company. Stores should always maintain a "roofing log" for whomever goes on it which will help determine who may be responsible for items left on the roof or causing damage. Parking lot preventive tasks were talked about with the general consensus of the need to seal and stripe every 3-5 years depending on lot conditions and geographical area. It was also noted that crack-fill should be done yearly to prevent a major repair and/or replacement expense in the future. This will minimize water getting under the surface which, over time, will certainly cause damage. Some discussions were held on landscape maintenance which centered on having professional companies versus in-house personnel supervise and complete the necessary tasks. There were several restaurant members on the call which noted overall landscape contract management was controlled by corporate rather than at the store level which resulted in better looking and more consistent exteriors. Lastly, exterior lighting and signage PM's were discussed but most do not have a normal schedule for this due to the fact of switching over to LED bulbs minimized the need for regular bulb replacements.

The Peer to Partner and Peer to Peer calls continue to provide great educational content for protecting your valuable store assets. I recommend engaging in all these calls when time permits. They are worth it.

Dover and out.


Jeff Dover, CRFP 
 Facilities Resource Manager | Restaurant Facility Management Association 
jeff@rfmaonline.com
972-805-0905 ext. 3


Tags:  Education  Peer to Partner  RFMA 

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Free Energy Assessments in Southern California

Posted By Jeff Dover, CRFP, RFMA, Wednesday, April 11, 2018
Updated: Monday, April 2, 2018

Hello RFMA Members,

With the hot summer months approaching, restaurant's utility bills are set to increase dramatically to their yearly highs due to the increased usage of air conditioning. There may be help available for those of you that have stores in southern California. SoCalGas is currently offering a FREE energy assessment survey for eligible stores throughout their service area. Qualified restaurants can potentially save in three (3) ways: reduced utility bills, equipment rebates, and cash-payouts on one-year gas savings. Once approved SoCalGas will complete a store visit and provide detailed recommendations how to be more efficient in your gas and water usage. The report will include the dollar savings, ROI, and available incentives. If you elect to utilize 3 pieces of qualifying equipment - hot water piping insulation, lighting, and new appliances, you get access to the "enhanced" financial incentives which generally reduce the ROI to two (2) years or less. The main focus is on gas but water and electricity is also included. To get started, free free to contact Frontier Energy, the company hired by SoCalGas for program implementation, at (800) 680-1512. Additionally, due to the new 2018 Tax Law changes, new equipment may be able for increased depreciation, saving valuable capital dollars. This really is a "win-win" situation.

Good luck!

Dover and out. 


Jeff Dover, CRFP 
 Facilities Resource Manager | Restaurant Facility Management Association 
jeff@rfmaonline.com
972-805-0905 ext. 3


Tags:  energy assessments  SoCalGas  utility rebates 

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Daylight Savings Time is Finally Here

Posted By Jeff Dover, CRFP, RFMA, Wednesday, March 28, 2018
Updated: Thursday, March 15, 2018

Hello RFMA members,

Well, it's been a couple weeks since Daylight Savings Time started. Normally this is a good time to communicate to your restaurants the need to check on the proper time settings for the following equipment:

- T-stats, is the time correct. Are the temperature and night setback settings properly configured?

- Time clocks settings for exterior building, parking lot, and signage lights. Remember to keep lot lights on for at least an additional 30 minutes after the last employee leaves the restaurant.

- Sprinkler system(s). Warmer weather is here. Ensure your sprinkler system internal clock is correct along with the proper run times for the different zones.

- Security/CCTV systems. This should change automatically but it's best to check to ensure the time is correct.

- Roof drains. Check to see they are not clogged and water is flowing freely. Also a good time to clean up any trash or debris which could potentially cause a roof puncture.

- On a personal note, this is always a good time to check your home t-stat and sprinkler systems for proper settings and change the batteries in the smoke/CO2 alarms.

Hot weather is right around the corner. Are your units ready? More on that in the future.

Hope you are having an emergency free Spring!

Dover and out.


Jeff Dover, CRFP 
 Facilities Resource Manager | Restaurant Facility Management Association 
jeff@rfmaonline.com
972-805-0905 ext. 3


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more Calendar

8/14/2018
Restaurant Roundtable: Atlanta

9/7/2018
Restaurant Roundtable: Austin

9/8/2018
RFMA Gives 2019 Volunteer Day

9/17/2018
Peer to Partner Call: ADA

9/19/2018
Peer to Peer Call: Franchisee Focus

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