Running a hospitality business takes a lot of time and energy. The focus for the owner of a restaurant must be on the quality of the food, the ambience and the excellent customer service that offers a unique dining experience. The behind-the-scenes business and financial administration can be a drain on the resource of a restaurant owner, but not anymore. A restaurant POS system can help improve your restaurant so that the focus is directed toward the customers and growing the business, and not getting side tracked by routine tasks that technology can manage.
Let’s take a look at the top 7 ways a point of sale system can help improve your restaurant.
- Frees up your time
Today’s POS system is a holistic approach to restaurant management, and for those restauranteurs who are not just the owner/managers but in some cases the chef, accountant and stock controller, there are just not enough hours in the day. Automating a lot of the routine inventory management, consumer engagement, cash analysis and marketing analytics is going to free up time that can be better spent running and improving other aspects of the business.
- Increases the service to customers
Consumers have so much choice these days so, when they choose to eat at your restaurant, you have a window of opportunity to turn them into return customers. One of the ways to keep a customer, is to ensure the quality of service is excellent and this means not keeping people waiting for their meal. Trained staff are very much part of this process, but they still have to get the order through to the kitchen, and getting multiple orders correct and delivered to the right table is no easy feat. Point of sale systems also have table maps so that you won’t keep a table waiting too long.
Orders can be taken at the table and at a press of the button, reach the chef who is able to immediately get the food ready to be served up. Plus, online ordering or take outs is made a lot easier, quicker and accessible if customers can place their order via a number of online platforms.
- Saves on staffing costs
As a restaurant POS system carries out a lot of the day-to-day tasks the employees carry out (stock take, face to face and telephone orders, bookings etc), it means that staffing costs can be reduced. As the owner, you can use the analytics tools in the system to review time taken to process orders and, if there is a training need with staff, this can be picked up on quickly avoiding costly mistakes.
- Improves payment methods and saves on accounting costs
Getting the bill wrong is a definite no-no, whether you are a small family run dining centre or an internationally renowned restaurant. Customers can pay online, with credit cards or cash with accurate billing. When integrated with the point of sale system, your taxation and deductibles are recorded and saved across to your accounting package. This means less work for your accountant and savings on their bills. In addition, if you have surcharges that apply on weekends or holidays, these can be set to automatically appear, ensuring the right prices are always charged maximising your cash flow.
- Reduces shrinkage and identifies discrepancies
You cannot be everywhere at once and from time to time, there will be losses due to breakage, overordering, spoiled or returned food and sadly, theft. These losses are what is known as shrinkage and the aim is to reduce these costs down to a small amount as possible, as it is a deficit to the business.
There is not too much that you can do about the odd breakage but keeping a track on ordering stock, is so much easier with an automated point of sale. Staples or regular orders can be programmed into the system so that they are automatically ordered once you fall below a pre-ordained quantity. Accidental over ordering resulting in spoiled fruit or vegetables for example, should not occur, and as the system can be used to track and monitor stock, any discrepancies between what was ordered and what was used, can quickly be picked up. The system provides you with real time sales and helps highlight any theft or misuse of cash by employees, as they will have to sign in and you can track their sales and orders.
- Improves on customer relations and marketing
This is where you can manage your customer database, encourage loyalty and buy in and start to get your brand recognised, without the need for a big marketing team and large budget. Point of sale technology allows you to build a consumer database, to reward returning customers with loyalty points, for example, and it captures valuable data to assist in developing new promotions to enlarge the customer base.
- Payroll at a touch of a button
Staffing costs are the biggest expense in any business and payroll the key part of profit and loss. Staff can use to POS to clock in and out, and accurately records what payment, tips or bonuses need to be factored into the cash flow. It also allows you to ensure timely payment which will keep your employees happy.
Happy staff equals happy customers and a successful restaurant owner – the only question now is why has it taken you so long to invest in a POS system?