Pros: Menu variety, low prices, fast service
Cons: One shortcoming can mean poor experience
--> WORKING AT MCDONALD'S:
I currently work and have worked for McDonald's for two years. In that time, I have learned all the tricks and the trade about McDonald's policies, procedures, food quality service times, etc. I also know how the management is at this fast food restaurant (or all for that matter). So, here is a review of McDonald's from an EMPLOYEE perspective.
--> ENTERING THE STORE:
Most common McDonald's these days have a glass entry room usually entered by one or two doors. On new stores, most of these are all windows. Then there is another door leading you into the lobby.
The lobby size varies per store. On typical new stories w/o Play Place, the lobby is small. My particular McDonald's has a nice, open lobby surrounded by tall, glass windows and two trash receptacles with fake plants decorating the top. The floors are of a various color marble look, which traps dirt incredibly easy. The orange-colored small, square tiles are much easier to clean. At the opposite end of the entry way is the drink and condiment station. This is where you'll get your own drinks (Coke products) and your ketchup, salt, napkins, etc. Some stores have the up-and-down ketchup pumps, while mine has the lever you pull down (to prevent clogging and excess ketchup squirting). At the waist level of the drink station is a big drain for all the dumped pop and ice. Two tiny trash holes are built-in for straw wrappers, empty sugar packets, etc.
The bathrooms are usually at one corner of the store. Mine is to the right of the entry way. Bathrooms at McDonald's usually have no paper towels (for waste purposes). The bathrooms at my store are usually kept clean often. Dirt and grime usually do collect in the sink bowl and dripping on down the hand dryers. People do also leave the bathroom w/o washing their hands. I always wash my hands in the bathroom, then in the kitchen (if I am preparing food).
** IF A RESTROOM IS DISSATISFACTORY, NOTIFY A MANAGER IMMEDIATELY; and a crew worker will clean it immediately.
--> APPROACHING THE COUNTER:
This is the first step to watch for. A good, customer-caring employee will greet you and smile at you BEFORE you reach the counter. It just goes to show that they really do enjoy seeing a customer walk in the door, and that they are ready to serve them. This is my technique, and I have received compliments accordingly. Also, a good employee will always say HELLO or HI - an improper introduction usually results in dissatisfactory service. Not showing a friendly, professional attitude means they DO NOT CARE and they DO NOT LIKE HAVING TO ACTUALLY WORK. If you deal with a McDonald's employee not putting forth friendliness and professionalism, NOTIFY THE MANAGER IMMEDIATELY to alleviate the problem. I often have confronted employees about being friendlier to the customers. That is just my opinion.
After being greeted and asked HOW MAY I HELP YOU? You will see the large, pictorial menu above you. Modern day stores have 8 value meals, #1 always being the Big Mac value meal. Some stores have done away with LARGE, so they only have MEDIUM and SUPERSIZE. You will also see a drink menu, dessert menu, and $1 MENU. This is what the $1 MENU composes of at most stores:
SANDWICHES: Double Cheeseburger, McChicken, Sausage Biscuit (breakfast only), Chicken Biscuit (very popular southern item)
DESSERTS: (2) Pies, Small Sundae, Cinnamon Roll (some stores), Snack Size Fruit 'n Yogurt Parfait
SIDES: McValue Fries (some consider this the medium as well), Side Salad (1 dressing and 1 pack of croutons are included)
DRINKS: Small (16 oz.) and/or Medium (21 oz.)
--> MAIN MENU:
SANDWICHES: Big Mac, Big & Tasty, Quarter Pounder w/Cheese, Hamburger, Cheeseburger, Double Cheeseburger, Filet o' Fish, Grilled Chicken, Crispy Chicken, and McChicken.
** These are the basic items, some menus will vary depending on the store
SIDES: French Fries, Apple Dippers (Includes 1 caramel sauce), Chicken McNuggets (usually 5 or 6, 9 or 10, and 20 piece).
SALADS: Side Salad, Bacon Ranch Salad, Cobb Salad, Caesar Salad, Fiesta Salad (all include 1 dressing packet, the Fiesta including 1 salsa packet and sour cream - all receive croutons).
HAPPY MEALS: Include choice of hamburger, cheeseburger, or 4-piece nugget. Includes 12-oz. drink, toy, and choice of fries or apple dippers.
MIGHTY KID MEALS: Includes choice of double hamburger, double cheeseburger, or 6-piece nugget. Includes 16-oz. drink, toy, and choice of fries or apple dippers.
DESSERTS: Hot Fudge/Caramel/Strawberry Sundae, Apple Pie, Fruit 'n Yogurt Parfait, Cookies, Cinnamon Roll, Ice Cream Cone, Milkshakes
DRINKS: Coke, Diet Coke, Sprite, Iced Tea (other drinks available depending on store), Coffee, Milk, Cappucino, Orange Juice, Water
--> BREAKFAST MENU:
SANDWICHES: Sausage Biscuit, Sausage Egg Biscuit, Bacon Egg Cheese Biscuit, Sausage McMuffin, Sausage Egg McMuffin, Egg McMuffin, Sausage McGriddle, Sausage Egg Cheese McGriddle, Bacon Egg Cheese McGriddle, Steak Egg Cheese Bagel, Bacon Egg Cheese Bagel, Ham Egg Cheese Bagel, Breakfast Burito (include 1 picante packet, sour cream optional).
PLATTERS: Hot Cakes, Hot Cakes w/Sausage, Big Breakfast, Country Big Breakfast, Deluxe Big Breakfast, Biscuits 'n Gravy.
--> ORDERING (WALK-IN):
Now, if it is one thing I would like customers to understand, it is that when you begin your order, be thorough and clear. Don't talk too fast and make sure you know EVERYTHING you will order. Often, if a customer doesn't know what he or she wants, then the employee will get frustrated, and YOU CAN SEE IT. Also, please have patience for employees that aren't wicked fast on the cash register. If you stay patient, THE EMPLOYEE WILL STAY PATIENT.
After you finish ordering, make sure to have the employee read it back to you (unless they do so already w/o you saying anything). This will ensure order accuracy and satisfaction. Also, it looks good on an employee who is willing to make DOUBLE SURE that an order is correct. I can't tell how many raging customers I've seen who have had their orders wrong, because of failure to double check the order was correct. Once you finish ordering and hand the cashier the money, make sure they hand you proper change. Then, they should GENTLY place the tray on the counter in front of you. The McDonald's Corporation encourages you to get your drinks LAST, after you've received your order. This is so the customer path stays even and flowing.
Once you are given your order, make sure the person who hands you the order says THANK YOU and HAVE A NICE DAY (or something of the sort). This shows they appreciate your business. Again, before you walk off, DOUBLE CHECK the tray for order accuracy. All issues should be settled right there with a manager or supervisor, before walking off.
** SERVING TIME FOR WALK-IN IS 90 SECONDS, TOTAL EXPERIENCE TIME (time you walk up to the counter to the time you leave the counter) IS 210 SECONDS.
--> ORDERING (DRIVE-THRU):
When pulling up to the drive-thru speaker, you shouldn't have to wait more than 5 seconds before a FRIENDLY VOICE speaks to you. Make sure they greet you and begin to CLEARLY AND THOROUGHLY place your order. Most stores have a order screen displaying what the employee has typed. Once it appears correct and you are finished, make sure they give you a total and to please come to the next window. There, you should see a smiling face and a friendly voice: HI, HOW ARE YOU TODAY? THAT'LL BE $5.00, PLEASE. Make sure they give you correct change, say THANK YOU and HAVE A NICE DAY (or something of the sort), and be on your way to the second window.
At the second is where you will receive the order. Make sure the second window person is friendly and greets you. They must also offer you SALT OR KETCHUP? When you receive your order, CHECK YOUR BAG before driving off. They should thank you and have you on your way. All issues should be settled at the window before taking off.
** SERVING TIME FOR DRIVE-THRU IS 90 SECONDS, TOTAL EXPERIENCE TIME (time you drive into the line from the time you leave the second window) IS 210 SECONDS.
--> FOOD QUALITY AND SERVICE TIMES:
This is everything you need to know about how fresh the food is and how long it is good for:
FRENCH FRIES: 7 Minutes (note for fries that are just standing there in the rack)
HASHBROWNS: 10 Minutes
SANDWICHES IN THE BIN: 5 Minutes
HAMBURGER MEAT: 15 Minutes
NUGGETS AND OTHER FRIED ITEMS: 20-30 Minutes (varies)
GRILLED CHICKEN: 1 Hour
ALL EGG PRODUCT: 20 Minutes
STEAK: 40 Minutes
CANADIAN BACON: 30 Minutes
SAUSAGE: 1 Hour
BACON: 6 Hours
PIES: 4 Hours
PARFAITS: 12 Hours (Snack Size)
SALADS: 8 Hours
BUNS (Already Toasted): 2 Minutes
** If you suspect the food you received is not as good as it should be, NOTIFY THE MANAGER IMMEDIATELY.
Now, in a franchise store, there are only 4 levels of management: Supervisor, Swing Manager, Store Manager, Owner Operator
1. Supervisor - the supervisor will usually wear a nametag with "SUPERVISOR" or "CREW LEADER" on it - their job is to simply over look the crew and assisting the managers in making sure customers are being served, proper procedures are being followed, and that no one is standing around doing nothing. They usually communicate through the manager of what they should have crew people (and themselves) be doing.
2. Swing Manager - the swing manager runs the shift. They overlook everything in the store to make sure it is clean, all employees are well-groomed, service times are being met, and that quality of product is top notch. They are usually the "blue shirts".
3. Store Manager - the store manager is the almighty God. They overlook EVERYTHING about the entire store. They also oversee how the swing manager is running the shift. They also do truck orders and count inventory at the end of the month. They also seek out new employees and usually handle hiring and firing.
4. Owner Operator - owns the store and makes sure it is kept up and that the managers are all doing their jobs.
** If you suspect poor management techniques, NOTIFY THE CORPORATION IMMEDIATELY.
--> MY IDEA OF A GOOD MANAGER:
"Someone who will be willing to help and not give orders all the time. Someone who will be friendly and offer suggestions, not criticism. Someone who will be fully dedicated to their job and to helping others doing theirs. Someone who can provide leadership and customer service skills for others to follow. Someone is on time and responsible and who never lets things go. A person can make sure customers are satisfied with their visit and that they
can make the store a place to be."
Just remember the next time you visit McDonald's, look over all aspects of the store. Ask yourself these questions:
1. Is it clean? Are the restrooms in order? Is the lobby clean? If not, is someone getting out there to do it?
2. Are the employees friendly? Do they smile? Do they greet? Do they have an attitude that is ready to serve me?
3. Is the management competent? Are they helping crew? Are they striving to make sure customer satisfaction is top rate?
4. Does my food taste good? Is it hot? Is it fresh? Is it the way I wanted it to be?
** If you answered "no" to any of these questions, NOTIFY THE CORPORATION OR MANAGEMENT IMMEDIATELY.
Thank you and enjoy your next McDonald's visit!