Fourth Annual "The Best"

Fourth Annual "The Best"

Design

Best use of small space
JPS Health Network has multiple buildings on its main campus. The JPS Cafe is located in a basement area adjacent to the Tower and is not readily accessible to many staff members. While there is a McDonald’s on site, nutritional services desired to offer another foodservice option to hospital staff and visitors.

In 2013, we opened a small food kiosk in a corner area near the Pavilion’s main entrance. This kiosk area was named The Corner Spot and service hours are from 11:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. The menu consists of assorted sandwiches and boxed lunches, wraps, a variety of salads and small desserts. The JPS Corner Spot has been very popular with employees and visitors, and sales collected in 2013 approached $100,000. Opening this additional foodservice venue more than paid for itself both in operating revenues and employee and visitor satisfaction. In 2014, the department is planning on extending the Corner Spot’s hours of operation to include breakfast and coffee service.
—Celia Krazit, R.D., director of nutritional services, JPS Health Network, Fort Worth, Texas 

Best commercial design element we’ve imitated
Creating a self-serve toppings bar at our high school, which is loaded with all kinds of vegetable, sandwich and entrée toppings.
—Jessica Shelly, food services director, Cincinnati Public Schools

The best simple design fix that paid big dividends
The serving lines in one of my school districts were old, dated and had sticker residue all over them. They just looked downright awful. The district didn’t have the financial means to replace them, so we covered the front with black contact paper. This really made it look new and the black color streamlined things. This was an economical face-lift that really looked great and saved the district a lot of money.
—Ruth Arnold, operations manager, Nutri-Serve Food Management, New Jersey

Moving from two serving lines to one line in elementary schools. It seems like that might make service slower, but by having two servers on one line instead of one server on each line, I can get kids through faster. This has allowed me to save labor by eliminating one cashier and having more kids participate in lunch since the line moves quicker.
—Jessica Shelly, food services director, Cincinnati Public Schools

More From FoodService Director

Ideas and Innovation
chicken dinner

For the last three years, we’ve hosted an event called Winner, Winner, Chicken Dinner. We sponsor the local chapter of Future Farmers of America to raise the chickens, and we have to arrange all the transporting from farms to the distributor, which keeps the birds in a freezer until we’re ready. We build hype by having students vote on the proprietary spice blend they would like on the chicken. It helps the nutrition team get involved in the educational process and showcase local food purchasing.

Ideas and Innovation
employees generation multicultural

We are no longer short staffed, ever. On a given day, missing two team members from a team of 50 would leave us 96% staffed. The actual choice of wording places a positive emphasis on those that did come to serve our guests and patients. We no longer use the phrase “short staffed”; this is a game-changer when we are challenging ourselves as culture facilitators or leaders.

Ideas and Innovation
food symbols allergens

To make safe food as accessible as possible for our guests with allergies, we are creating an allergen-friendly kitchen this summer. Students and community members will be able to use our mobile app to place orders for allergen-friendly food and pick them up at the central kitchen. The kitchen will also produce grab-and-go options that will be distributed across campus.

Ideas and Innovation
construction plans drawing tools calculator

When revamping an old cafeteria or building a new retail spot, the design process can feel like fitting together the pieces of a puzzle: What needs to fit in the space, and what’s the most efficient flow for staffers, cooks, diners and more?

Cathy Estes, administrative director of nutrition services at four northern Indiana hospitals that are part of the Franciscan Health network, faced the creation of a new in-house dining program at Franciscan’s Munster hospital. Amid all the big plans, design was one of the largest undertakings.

“I was looking at 5,000 square feet on a...

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