May 04, 2021

National Restaurant Association Issues Updated COVID-19 Operating Guidance with Latest Employee Training Best Practices

Washington, D.C. – Today, the National Restaurant Association and ServSafe® released an updated version of its COVID-19 Operating Guidance incorporating new information on best practices to train staff on risk mitigation regarding the spread of COVID-19. The Operating Guidance continues to incorporate the latest information from sources including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA), Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), and the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE).

Key updates on employee training and education include:

  • Guidance on effective education methods for training employees on COVID-19 policies.
  • Details on key topics to include in employee training materials such as the difference between cleaning and disinfecting as well as OSHA Hazard Communication Standards.
  • Information on effective communication channels for employees to express concerns, ask questions, make comments, and provide feedback.

“Given the unprecedented nature of the COVID-19 pandemic and the evolution of learnings shared by the scientific community and governing bodies, it is important that operators prioritize staff training and risk mitigation regarding the spread of COVID-19,” said Larry Lynch, senior vice president of Science and Industry for the National Restaurant Association. “The foodservice industry is a leader in adapting and training employees in best practices for food safety and this COVID-19 training is an extension of those best practices. It’s essential that owners and operators operationalize this training and revisit it with staff frequently.” 

This is the fifth version of the COVID-19 Operating Guidance since it was released by the Association and ServSafe in April 2020. In addition, ServSafe has made available free training videos to provide hands-on, educational resources on COVID-19 best practices for restaurant and foodservice workers covering topics such as conflict de-escalation, safe reopening, takeout and delivery.

Download the latest COVID-19 Operating Guidance here.

About the National Restaurant Association

Founded in 1919, the National Restaurant Association is the leading business association for the restaurant industry, which comprises more than 1 million restaurant and foodservice outlets and a workforce of 15.5 million employees. Together with 52 State Associations, we are a network of professional organizations dedicated to serving every restaurant through advocacy, education, and food safety. We sponsor the industry's largest trade show (National Restaurant Association Show); leading food safety training and certification program (ServSafe); unique career-building high school program (the NRAEF's ProStart). For more information, visit and find @WeRRestaurants on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube.