There are not too many options when it comes to running a foodservice department in a hospital. Either you have a team of professionals on staff to take care of all your day-to-day responsibilities in-house, or you spend that money on outsourcing the job to a professional foodservice contractor. Both options come with a variety of pros and cons depending on your specific needs, but if you have been contemplating transitioning your foodservice department to one that is self-operated, below are a list of the benefits that may reinforce your decision.
Clear Service Objectives
A hospital has really only one objective – to provide the best care and services possible to help patients recover from illnesses and live healthy lives. However, some foodservice contractors may have other motives that can conflict with your goals. For instance, you may want to incorporate fresher and more wholesome ingredients into your menus whereas a contractor may opt for whatever items are the least expensive at the moment. Taking the time to determine what your foodservice intentions are may help you decide which route is best for you.
Reducing Unnecessary Expenses
Figuring out what option your hospital should take when it comes to foodservice can often come down to one thing: cost versus convenience. Yes, having an outside source handle all your foodservice operations can give you a sense of peace, out of sight out of mind and all that, but relinquishing your control can also leave you open to paying way more for something that you could ultimately do yourself. Having more control may seem like just one more responsibility, but it can also save your hospital a good bit of money as well as open you up to rebates and other incentives that you wouldn’t have been able to take advantage of otherwise.
Turnover can be a big problem in hospitals. New staff members are not as familiar with patients and their needs, which can lead to costly mistakes that leave patients at serious risk. This can be true when outsourcing your foodservice operations as well. As contractors move employees from place to place, your hospital is left constantly trying to oversee what is being done to prevent accidents. By having one trained, in-house staff, to manage all your foodservice procedures, your hospital can benefit from having a more stable and effective working environment with fewer accidents and happier patients.
Freedom and Flexibility
With everyone in your hospital all on the same page, every penny of your budget spent wisely, and with a loyal and knowledgeable staff awaiting your command, you can be as free and flexible as you want when it comes to what you’re serving and where your food comes from. Whether you are looking to serve an all-organic menu featuring items from local farms, or buy a bulk supply of something you use often to cut down on long-term costs, you are the one who gets to have the final say.
Increase Patient Satisfaction
Research has shown that patients who are more satisfied with their care often recover faster than those who are not, which means your foodservice decisions can directly affect patient health. By keeping your foodservice operation in-house, your diet office staff will be able to pay more attention to each patient and their unique needs rather than simply treating the whole process like an assembly line, and your patients will notice and appreciate the effort.
If you are planning on switching to a self-operated foodservice department in the near future, you may also want to consider taking advantage of nutrition software and other applications, like those at Vision Software, that are designed to help hospital foodservice departments operate as efficiently as possible. From tray tracking and menu ordering applications, to comprehensive patient analysis capabilities, the technologies at Vision Software can effectively enhance your foodservice department’s overall potential and result in increased patient safety and satisfaction.
Call 629.777.8989 or fill in the free consultation form in the sidebar to learn more about how our software can positively impact the lives of the patients and visitors you service every day.