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Operational Audit Allen Hall Food Court Report

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Updated: May 6th, 2022

Background

Allen Hall Food Court generated its revenue from the sale of food and beverages. The food court had classic meal plans that could be paid for using credit cards. The revenue generated by the enterprise was used to facilitate the operations of the food court. For example, the costs of the cafeteria’s supplies, equipment and other expenses were met by the generated revenue. The payroll and overtime were also met by the proceeds from sales. The food court had one opening that was used as the entrance and exit for staff and clients. The hall was closely packed with chairs and tables. This audit inspected the operation procedures of the cafe to ascertain its effectiveness during service delivery to its clients.

Objective

This audit aimed at evaluating the effectiveness of the café’s operations. It also aimed at providing recommendations to improve the operations of the food outlet.

Scope

The report covered the period from 12/01/2015 to 12/03/2015. Thirty three clients filled in questionnaires after which their responses were tallied. The questions ranged from food quality, cleanliness, the safety of the court, the efficiency of service delivery to overall satisfaction. The clients filled the questionnaires willingly during the period of data collection. The clarity of prices was also included in the questionnaires to determine whether the clients could find prices of all meals with ease. The Hanger report revealed some of the flaws within the court that needed to be rectified. The compilation of the report encompassed the input of 33 auditors who helped in providing unbiased conclusions.

Conclusion

The efficiency of the entire process of service delivery was rated as average because the clients reported that the outlet served food within two minutes. However, this time should be reduced to a minute or less because consumers were time conscious and did not wish to waste their time waiting. The cleanliness of the floors needed a turnaround whereas the arrangement needed to be reorganized. The conditions of the cleaning equipment and cloths needed improvement to ensure the hygiene of the court met the required standards. Meeting all the requirements as needed by the law was important for the success of the business as well as client satisfaction.

Observation 1: Cleanliness

The management and personnel checks according to the State of Ohio Standard Inspection Report Authority Chapters 3717 and 35715 indicated various violations. The first violation was 3717-1-03.4 Food: Limitation of Growth of Organisms of Public Health Concern that held the firm responsible for poor handling of food at various temperatures that compromised the safety of the food. For example, the presence of white cheese stored at 44 oF was tangible evidence for the violation. The right handling temperatures for cold and hot foods were stipulated as 41 oF and 135 oF respectively to restrict the growth of bacteria and possible food contamination.

The food court violated section 3717-1-03.2 Food: Protection from Contamination after Receiving. Food received should remain clean and fit for human consumption. The handling of food after receipt determined the cleanliness of the food. The inspection reported that there were limitations on the use of wiping cloths. The wiping cloths and their containers were stored inappropriately (on the counter) thereby causing contamination. The sanitation of the rags could be improved by soaking them in sanitizer solutions at the right concentration to prevent bacterial growth and food contamination.

Surfaces used for food preparation and cleaning were found to be damaged. The surfaces needed to be free of cracks, pits, or any imperfections that could accumulate dirt or debris as indicated by Section 3717-1-04.5: Equipment, Utensils, and Linens. The storage of clean equipment was also a cause for concern because the auditors found that some items were not inverted or protected from contamination. The handling of the kitchenware and tableware in the hotel was improper because their orientation with respect to the handles was not observed. For instance, ice-cream scoops with handles had their handles facing different directions, which increased the chances of touching the lip-contact surfaces and contaminating them. The maintenance of worn-out machines was poor. For example, the ice machine had a large hole on top, some pipes were unsealed, and a moldy caulking was found behind the 3-compartment sink.

Recommendations

The temperatures of food storage should be set to the required values to limit the growth of bacteria. The wiping material should be sanitized with an appropriate sanitizer at the right concentration to avoid any contamination of food. The equipment used in the preparation of food and surfaces where foods were placed should be free of cracks or dents that could accumulate food debris, which could encourage bacterial growth. The surfaces and utensils should be cleaned thoroughly. This task could be achieved by having specific workers assigned to clean. After cleaning, the equipment should be stored in raised areas about six inches above the ground. The equipment should be inverted in a clean and dry area that was free of any contamination. The kitchenware and tableware ought to be arranged with all handles facing one direction to reduce possible contamination of food and lip-contact surfaces. The physical facilities should be repaired to maintain them in the required operating conditions. The moldy caulking needed to be replaced, whereas the ice machine required to be repaired by sealing all holes around pipes.

Observation 2: Court Layout

The layout of the kitchen was not up to the required standards as it lacked a separate exit door from the main court. In the event of an accidental fire, the safety of the chefs and workers in the kitchen would be at a risk because they would only have one door to exit the premises. The workers in the kitchen would be forced to use the same door as the customers making a quick exit impossible given the number of tables and chairs that filled the court’s hall. This arrangement predisposed the workers and customers to the danger of stampedes that could cause loss of lives in case of fires or any other emergencies. The absence of checking out and billing queues was a major problem because it led to clustering of customers instead of queuing. The arrangement of the hall was poor hence making movement difficult due to the proximity of tables and chairs.

Recommendation

The kitchen should have an exit door, which should be strategically placed in an area that was visible to all workers. The door should also be large enough to accommodate many people at a time (about three to four people). The kitchen arrangement should allow the movement of the workers without meeting obstacles in the form of kitchen equipment. The tables and chairs in the main hall should be arranged with adequate spaces between them to facilitate the ease of movement. The billing and checking out queues should have waiting line barriers for demarcation of spaces that could be utilized in case of an emergency.

Observation 3: Prices

The absence of prices or failure to state the prices of some items such as coffee was not appealing to the clients. The number of clients who stated that the prices of food items were not clear was high (approximately 25% of the total respondents).

Recommendations

All food items should have accurate prices indicated. The position of the price tags should be easily located on the items. Variations of prices on given items should be captured directly on the menu.

Observation 4: Controls over Inventory

The responses from 19 out of the 33 auditors indicated that theft of inventory was probable. These responses accounted for 58% of the auditors and pointed towards a weak internal control of inventory. Inventory management was crucial for the profitability and success any business. Failure to manage the inventory was likely to cause serious problems, for example, financial losses to the company that could lead to the laying off of the suspected culprits.

Recommendations

The control of inventory should be assigned to an individual for accountability and ease of administration. The inventory should also be kept under lock and key in a specified store. Access to the store should be restricted to a few individuals and the person in charge of controlling the inventory. Additionally, the inventory should only be issued upon request to avoid possible wastage or theft.

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IvyPanda. "Operational Audit Allen Hall Food Court." May 6, 2022. https://ivypanda.com/essays/operational-audit-allen-hall-food-court/.

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IvyPanda. 2022. "Operational Audit Allen Hall Food Court." May 6, 2022. https://ivypanda.com/essays/operational-audit-allen-hall-food-court/.

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