Restaurant's customer service initiative designed to compete against top Italian chains

Lexington, Kentucky-based Fazoli's restaurant is overhauling its dated approach to food and service in hopes of swaying customers to give them a second chance, the Herald-Leader reports.

Lexington, Kentucky-based Fazoli's restaurant is overhauling its dated approach to food and service in hopes of swaying customers to give them a second chance, the Herald-Leader reports.

In October, the chain made aesthetic updates to all 125 of its stores, such as enhancing the decor and exteriors and replacing disposable plates, cups and utensils with reusable dishes, silverware and glasses.

Furthermore, Fazoli's has vowed to take a more service-oriented approach going forward that it hopes will increase customer satisfaction and loyalty and help it compete against well-known Italian eateries such as The Olive Garden and Carrabba's Italian Grill.

"By adding more of a service element, it gives an opportunity for the consumer to have a quicker experience and maybe a more affordable experience," Melissa Wilson, Principal at Chicago research firm Technomic, told the news source.

Specifically, managers will increase customer interaction by moving to the dining area to serve as breadstick people. In addition, all employees will receive two days of training to familiarize themselves with a new menu.

The initiative seems to be paying off. Last month's comp store sales were up 6.6 percent over 2010, the chain's best November performance since 1998.