Restaurant kitchen fit-outs can be far more challenging than residential ones. If you're about to start planning a fit-out project like this, these tips should help.
Prioritise ergonomics when having the kitchen designed and manufactured
During the early stages of the fit-out process, you'll have to work closely with the kitchen manufacturer in order to give them instructions regarding the design of the kitchen. During these discussions, you must emphasise the importance of ergonomics. For example, you should insist that appliances that are usually positioned on the ground, like dishwashers and ovens, are installed on frames that put them in an elevated position so that the restaurant staff who use these appliances will not have to bend down each time they put dishes or food into or out of them.
Whilst in residential properties, people rarely use their dishwashers or ovens more than a couple of times a day, restaurant kitchen staff might have to access these appliances more than a dozen times during each of their shifts. Repeatedly stooping over to pick up or unload heavy dishes every workday could eventually leave them with back, shoulder or knee injuries. Given this, you must ensure that the kitchen manufacturer designs a layout that puts these items in elevated positions so that people don't have to contort or strain their bodies to access them. This will reduce the likelihood of the restaurant's staff sustaining injuries.
Opt for wall-mounted storage wherever possible
As part of the fit-out process, you will also need to decide what storage to use in the kitchen. Because an average-sized restaurant will often need to serve meals to several dozen customers at any one time, it will need to have a large stack of easy-to-access dishes, cutlery, glasses, and ingredients. It's best to have the kitchen manufacturer create wall-mounted storage where possible (although the wall storage should not too high up, as this would result in shorter kitchen staff having to strain themselves to stretch up and reach the higher shelves, which could cause injuries).
The kitchen in a popular restaurant is usually busy from the moment it opens until it closes. Staff who are in a rush to make up customers' meals don't tend to gingerly reach for the ingredients or dinnerware they need but instead often snatch them quickly from the shelves so that they can get their work done and not keep the customers waiting too long. The staff may also have to hurriedly push past one another whilst walking by these units.
If the shelving units are freestanding instead of being attached to the walls, the staff might have to move more slowly and gently then they normally would when walking by them and have to take greater care when picking items off the units, in order to avoid accidentally shaking the unit and causing things to fall off it (or causing the unit itself to tip over). If they have to do this, they may not be able to work as fast as they need to and the chances of dishes or ingredients falling off the shelves will be higher. As such, these items should be wall-mounted wherever possible so that they will stay stable, even when staff members bump into them or snatch items off of them.
For more information, contact a restaurant kitchen fit-out service.