Hi folks,

My husband and I are in the process of opening a coffee bar. We have a detailed business plan but neither one of us has ever worked in a cafe so we're both a little clueless when it comes to typical start of day/end of day procedures in a cafe. 

Does anyone have a checklist they'd mind sharing?

Cheers,
Luce

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Hopefully your business plan includes bringing someone on board that does have experience not just working in but managing a shop. Not just for open and close procedures. That or at the minimum attend a good Coffee School like ABC.
Thanks Mike. Our business plan doesn't involve bringing on someone who already has experience, mostly because where we are, third wave/specialty coffee doesn't exist, coffee is generally bad, and service poor. I've attended barista training, latte art, cupping and roasting courses. My husband has an MBA and has successfully built a few businesses (retail and construction - not hospitality!). We have a clear idea of what we want to do, and a good macro idea of what we need to do, I'm just a little nervous about all the little things I won't know about until we open. My husband is a fan of a soft opening and some quick learning and thinks that EOD procedures, etc., are not so important for us to be thinking about right now. I guess I agree (or at least defer to his business experience), but I thought I'd ask anyway. :)
End of the day procedures are very important. It will not only greatly effect your product within a few short days, if not done, but can end up causing you equipment problems in the future. Just like a car regular maintenance including end of the day procedures will greatly extend the life of all of your equipment. If the roaster you will be using doesn't offer extensive training including daily maintenance I would look for a company that does. Other than equipment other end of day is pretty much custom to your cafe. Know your product and learn it well. I've seen many a successful businessman open a cafe only to fail and usually quickly. People think coffee is a simple beverage and it's not. Invest in proper training. It will pay off.
I have a checklist I made for a cafe I was working at, if you are interested I can email it to you so that you have general idea what to expect. Then you can make one of your own. It's pretty thorough, but it's a start. Let me know.
Thanks Daniel, that'd be really great. Can you send it via BX? If not, I'll PM you my email.

Daniel,


Any chance you can email me the checklist?  Thanks for sharing!

 

Dave

 

Daniel King Pizzutti said:

I have a checklist I made for a cafe I was working at, if you are interested I can email it to you so that you have general idea what to expect. Then you can make one of your own. It's pretty thorough, but it's a start. Let me know.

For my shop, Since its only been open 6 months, I'm here all day from open to close. Closing procedures are very important and I try to make it as convenient as possible for an easy Opening.

 

-I start to clean up the pastries trays 45 minutes before close. (putting pastries away etc)

-I also clean up one side of the grooves on the espresso machine and leave the other one in case someone comes within 45 mins of closing. I use the cleaning solution for the grooves and while thats cleaning I clean the portafilter basket and portafilter as well.

-Clean all the tables from the working tables all the way to the seating area.

-Then sweep the work area and customer seating area.

-I would then clean the air pots well.

-Wipe down the microwave and toasters.

-Refill anything that needs to be refilled, (cups, lids, straws, etc)

-Check bathroom to see what needs to be refilled.

....By this time, it should be very close to closing time....

-I would then start to close out the register. (counting the money and prepping for tomorros register) (I would still take orders if people come in since i have the other espresso groove still not cleaned)

-Once I'm done with the register (and booking keeping number entering) I would clean the other groove of the espresso machine.

-Then comes the mopping.

-Fill bucket with the water and bleach from sink

-empty sink and spray down the sink.

-Put all the rags in the bucket of bleach.

-Make sure AC is off and anything else that shouldn't be left on all day.

...I actually leave my espresso machine on all day and never off unless the shops closing for a few days due to holidays...

 

I think I covered everything. Hope this helps! ***TIPS***Clean up an hour ahead of time for stuff that you CAN clean up that way it saves you time. Me being the only worker for my shop, time is very crucial to me

You said:

"Our business plan doesn't involve bringing on someone who already has experience, mostly because where we are, third wave/specialty coffee doesn't exist, coffee is generally bad, and service poor."

 

Good luck.  Listen to anybody in the industry who runs a successful operation, and the first thing they'll tell people who are wanting to start a place but have no hands-on experience running a cafe (your situation from what I gather) is to get a job in the industry before you open a place.  Sage advice. 

 

Another comment I would have is that if you plan on operating your business based on customer ignorance of what good coffee is, then you'll most likely fail.  Information and consumer education is available free of charge at all your potential customers' fingertips.   

 

The odds are overwhelmingly pointing to the failure of your business (even with an MBA, CPA, and other business ownership experience).  The letters at the end of your name will not make any difference in the success of your shop.  Successful business ownership in other industries does not translate in the slightest to running a successful coffee bar.  Sorry to come off cold, but that's the reality. 


hi could you please email me the checklist if you still have , THANX 
David Simon said:

Daniel,


Any chance you can email me the checklist?  Thanks for sharing!

 

Dave

 

Daniel King Pizzutti said:

I have a checklist I made for a cafe I was working at, if you are interested I can email it to you so that you have general idea what to expect. Then you can make one of your own. It's pretty thorough, but it's a start. Let me know.


MY EMAIL smathex@yahoo.com
Mathew Chomumwe said:


hi could you please email me the checklist if you still have , THANX 
David Simon said:

Daniel,


Any chance you can email me the checklist?  Thanks for sharing!

 

Dave

 

Daniel King Pizzutti said:

I have a checklist I made for a cafe I was working at, if you are interested I can email it to you so that you have general idea what to expect. Then you can make one of your own. It's pretty thorough, but it's a start. Let me know.

The majority of my time is spent consulting with restaurant and coffee shop owners who are looking to make their coffee programs successful. I have yet to see an inexperienced shop owner succeed. Ten or twenty years of experience in another industry is worth something but not a lot. A university degree may equip one to write a sweet business plan which a banker may enjoy reading but no university that I'm aware of is teaching what you can learn by working for a couple of years in a coffee shop. Hey, wash dishes, sweep floors, learn the basics. No work is demeaning. Personally, I have zero interest in franchises, but, I worked part time for over five years at one just to build my understanding of how they differ from the Indie world. Bad coffee, but time well spent. 



Daniel Williamson said:

You said:

"Our business plan doesn't involve bringing on someone who already has experience, mostly because where we are, third wave/specialty coffee doesn't exist, coffee is generally bad, and service poor."

 

Good luck.  Listen to anybody in the industry who runs a successful operation, and the first thing they'll tell people who are wanting to start a place but have no hands-on experience running a cafe (your situation from what I gather) is to get a job in the industry before you open a place.  Sage advice. 

 

Another comment I would have is that if you plan on operating your business based on customer ignorance of what good coffee is, then you'll most likely fail.  Information and consumer education is available free of charge at all your potential customers' fingertips.   

 

The odds are overwhelmingly pointing to the failure of your business (even with an MBA, CPA, and other business ownership experience).  The letters at the end of your name will not make any difference in the success of your shop.  Successful business ownership in other industries does not translate in the slightest to running a successful coffee bar.  Sorry to come off cold, but that's the reality. 

Sorry to jump on this thread. But wondered if there was anyone on here that would share with me their opening & closing checklist/procedure pretty please.

thanks :)

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