Not happy with your current electronic cash register or restaurant POS? It may be time to scrap your existing technology and buy a new restaurant POS. Here are four signs that your restaurant is ready for a new POS system:
1. You are experiencing consistent technical difficulties with the software and have been unable to determine what’s causing the problem(s). The constant appearance of “blue screens” on your restaurant POS terminal falls into this category. So, too, does the regular incident of “crashes” or instances in which the restaurant POS system freezes and cannot be operated at all.
Or, maybe the restaurant POS system simply doesn’t seem to be running as well as it once did. For example, payments are rejected or delayed, payment authorization is difficult to obtain, or completing customer transactions takes longer than in the past.
While you may be tempted to endure these glitches instead of investing in a new restaurant POS technology, doing so is probably not a good idea. If customers continue to experience delays and difficulty in settling their tabs at your establishment(s), you may lose their business to the establishment down the street.
2. Your POS hardware—for example, receipt printers—breaks down often and always needs to be repaired. Frequent hardware malfunctions that seem minor—such as printers that will not print or monitors that simply won’t switch on—can be indicative of an imminent system-wide failure. Buying a new restaurant POS system before this happens protects your business from potentially losing business due to equipment failure. What’s more, you won’t be able to handle major issues like a corrupt database no matter how familiar you are with your existing POS system. Without access to experts who can perform complex remediation tasks, you’re probably better off jumping on the replacement bandwagon. Components of your POS system can be fixed, but the cost of replacement parts and lost business will eventually exceed the price of another POS system.
3. Your business needs additional functionality and has outgrown the restaurant POS software it uses. Today’s foodservice environment is fraught with increased competition as well as with rising ingredient and labor costs. This makes it imperative for operators to have full-featured restaurant POS solutions in place that enable them to improve check averages, enhance customer satisfaction, and leverage human resources more appropriately by accepting orders online, via mobile devices, and/or through self-service systems.
Restaurant POS software should also support the use of loyalty programs aimed at increasing diner frequency and bolstering customer retention. Such solutions should also give operators the ability to reduce food costs through portion controls and inventory tracking, while minimizing labor expenditures through employee scheduling and overtime restrictions. Opting to run restaurant POS software that does not include these features and capabilities could have a negative impact on your bottom line.
4. Your restaurant POS system is out of warranty, and your current POS provider is not responding to requests for support. There’s no question that over the years, you’ve developed a certain degree of familiarity with your existing restaurant POS system. But however much you do know about that system and the way in which it functions, it’s extremely difficult to handle major issues on your own. Without access to experts who can get to the heart of your restaurant POS system’s problems and perform complex repair tasks, you almost assuredly are better off replacing your configuration in its entirety.
It goes without saying that investing in a new restaurant POS system simply for the sake of new technology is not the most prudent use of any restaurant operator’s money. However, when the above-mentioned criteria apply, the time has come to draw the replacement card.