4 Top Trends in Foodservice Training for 2023

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Trust20 Contributors • 4 minute read

In the December 2022 issue of Argentum Quarterly, an Employee Experience Trends survey from Qualtrics called out “opportunities for learning and development” as the primary driver of “intent to stay” and second-most powerful driver of staff engagement. 

Pair this with the Qualtrics statistic that shows only 60% of employees say their company is doing well when it comes to providing learning and development opportunities, and an opportunity for employers to gain a competitive advantage in both hiring and retention emerges. 

In partnership with the Relish Works Innovation team, we have consolidated the top trends we believe we will see as this opportunity impacts how training is delivered. Whether you’re a foodservice worker looking for career growth opportunities or a manager considering training for their team, you can ensure you’re choosing the best learning provider by keeping an eye out for courses that incorporate these cutting-edge features.

Mobile Learning

Let’s face it – we are all busier than ever. And, if we want learners to complete a training and actually retain the information, they want (and need) to complete it on their terms - anytime, anywhere, across any device. The days of sitting the whole team down in the breakroom to watch a video or listen to a presentation are over. Foodservice workers have such varied schedules that it is next to impossible to get the entire team in the room. Even trying to squeeze it in during a pre-shift “meeting” isn’t feasible because one can only cover what the staff needs to know for the work immediately at hand. If operators and managers want their staff to succeed, they have to provide learners a training that allows them to complete it on their own terms

Continuous Improvement

The foodservice industry is constantly changing and, if we’ve learned anything over the last few years, that means our processes and operations must be ready to shift at the drop of a hat. Training providers should be asking for feedback and making adjustments to their products on a regular basis. Managers should be looking for information about when a course was released, when it was last updated, and whether or not a training provider offers the chance to provide feedback. These are all signs that a platform believes in continuous improvement and that it prioritizes making their products learner-centric.


Uninterrupted time is a luxury that many in the foodservice industry simply do not have. Because of this, learners need to be able to consume content in small bites, easily digest the information, and check their retention one section at a time. Micro-learning makes it possible for busy staff to work on developing their skills and knowledge a little bit at a time, making career growth more accessible to the people who can’t dedicate multiple, consecutive hours to long-form training.

Micro-learning not only fits around the busy schedules of industry workers, it can help learners with ever-decreasing attention spans and a variety of learning styles still find success. Segmented modules and standalone lessons allow for variety in structure and design so that visual, auditory, and kinesthetic learners can benefit equally – and those who get easily distracted won’t feel lost along the way.


There are an extraordinary number of e-learning offerings that exist now, giving learners the ability to choose courses that are interactive, engaging, and fun. Gamification, or the use of games and activities to enhance training experiences, helps learners better understand and remember what they are learning. It also helps prevent learners from zoning out and picking up a different device to scroll while the training goes on in the background. It is perfect for preventing learners from mentally checking out when studying dry topics and working through long trainings. According to Gabe Zichermann, author of Gamification by Design, gamification increases employee skill retention by up to 40%. Gamification is a popular tool because it works!

A recent study found that “for restaurant employees added in the past year, the average employee tenure is just 110 days—a little over three months” (7Shifts). This points to a continued struggle with turnover and low engagement in the foodservice industry, leaving restaurant owners, operators, and managers searching for solutions. While flexible schedules and cash bonuses may entice workers in the door, these strategies don’t necessarily build loyalty or a rapport between an individual and their manager.

When staff retain new or better  information and are able to apply it to their work, they not only become a better employee and team member, but they are happier, more engaged, and more confident in themselves. Leaders in the foodservice industry should take notes from other industries and invest in their staff by providing them with access to training and development programs that utilize these four training trends in order to increase retention and engagement across their team.

Trust20 envisions a more inclusive and respected industry where staff at every level can reach their full potential. Our mobile-friendly food handler and food allergy courses have been designed so that learners can either learn on the go or start and stop as often as necessary. We regularly aggregate feedback and data from our learners and instructional designers to ensure our courses meet the needs of the foodservice industry while also fulfilling the wants of the learners.

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