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should chefs and food workers be required to undergo background checks?

The Australian foodservice market is projected to reach $80.7 by 2025. The growth of this industry is assured for one major reason - Our love for ‘good food’! Moreover, it can only get better. To meet up to our growing appetite for good food, chefs and food workers have an important role of play.

For employers in the restaurant sphere, the need for great chefs, waiters, counter attendants, kitchen assistants and more is growing. However, these positions must be filled with the right people. Screening checks can help employers in the foodservice space determine the suitability of an applicant for the roles. Here’s why background checks are important.

  • Providing Good Food

People buy from restaurants and fast food stores if they feel their food is delicious. To make delicious foods, you need great chefs. But how can employers ensure that applicants for a chef role are indeed qualified? By verifying the experience of chefs, through a reference check, employers can get a sense of their expertise before they’re given a trial.

  • Maintaining Good Customer Service

The food industry is hinged on customer service. Waiters and all other members of the staff have to be courteous to diners/customers. Therefore, a waiter with a violent tendency may not be appropriate. Similarly, sex offenders may harass customers. But by carrying out a criminal history check, employers can find out about their past crimes before making any hiring decision.

  • Ensuring Workplace Safety

Safety is highly important in the kitchen. Therefore, there is little room for errors or violence. Chefs have to observe the highest level of safety procedures. Moreover, fights must never happen in the kitchen due to the potential damage that can be done. A police check can be used to find out about the criminal past of an applicant. Applicants that have been charged for multiple instances of violence will not be suited to work in a high-risk area like the kitchen.

Moreover, workers have to respect co-workers and with a criminal history check, employers can filter out candidates that can potentially threaten workplace safety. It is particularly important if the workers have contact with vulnerable persons like children. If a worker is exposed to children in the workplace (for example a chef working at a boarding school) then best practice is to ask them to undergo a background history check like the working with children checks that are commonly required in countries like Australia.

  • Fraud Prevention

Trust is very important in the foodservice industry. For roles involving money, the employee must not engage in fraudulent activities that can harm the bottom line. To ensure that, employers can carry out credit history checks to gain insight into the financial life of the applicants - their current financial situation, as well as their spending habits. This can be used to assess the likelihood of them engaging in fraud before making any hiring decision.

Similarly, waiters have to be trustworthy. For instance, if a customer forgets his/her purse and later comes back for it, would he/she be able to retrieve it? Good workers will ensure that they build trust with diners - and help them in the best possible way.

Chefs and food workers should be required to undergo background checks because it helps employers ensure that they have trustworthy employees that are capable of delivering the highest standard in terms of food quality and customer service.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the businesses in question before making your plans.

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