The Orient Express

S. Kessler, M. Elghayesh, C. Lanciault, C. Adams, A. M. Barrett

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The changing health care environment makes customer satisfaction a primary concern for all areas of food service. Well-trained, enthusiastic employees are a food service's most valuable asset in achieving superior customer satisfaction. New employee orientation sets the stage for developing a dynamic team committed to customer service. Recognizing this fact, Nutrition and Food Service formed a Process Action Team (PAT) including employees from all levels of the service to design a comprehensive orientation program for new employees. The PAT's goal was to develop a flexible orientation packet that could be used at all levels of the service. The team initially used flowcharts and variance matrix charts to evaluate the existing orientation program, identifying its strengths and weaknesses. PAT members also sought input from employees throughout the service as well as from neighboring institutions of similar complexity regarding the ideal orientation program. From this information, the PAT developed an orientation checklist, and each PAT member expanded upon particular sections of the checklist. The checklist served as a starting point for developing informational sheets that described the service: for example, vignettes of management positions, do's and don'ts for requesting leave, safety tips, important telephone numbers. The sheets were tailored to the type of employee. For example, the clinical staff and the food service workers have somewhat different dress codes, thus distinct sheets were developed. The orientation packet also included an evaluation component, and the feedback from this instrument suggests that the PAT accomplished its goal of developing a flexible, comprehensive orientation packet that meets the needs of new employees at all levels of the service.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)A81
JournalJournal of the American Dietetic Association
Issue number9 SUPPL.
StatePublished - Sep 1995

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Nutrition and Dietetics


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