Many restaurants make the mistake of raising their prices to increase profits. However, there is a much easier and efficient way to improve profitability – by cutting back on unnecessary costs and wasted time using your point of sale (POS) software. Not to mention, it would be silly not to, as most POS software is purposely designed to save time and money by bolstering productivity and analyzing sales reports.
That said, simply purchasing a POS system or installing POS software is not enough to see significant savings – restaurants must use these resources to their full potential in order to reap the benefits. To increase the return on your investment and your annual revenue, you must put plans in place for managing and organizing your POS infrastructure, as well as keeping it up to date.
Here are four suggestions to get you started with saving:
1. Get up to date
Even more so than hardware, software that is old or outdated can affect your employees’ ability to do their jobs. To remain productive, your software must allow them to perform tasks easily and efficiently.
If they have to stop what they’re doing to fix glitches, delete and re-enter items or wait 30 seconds for the system to process an order, then it can tack a few extra minutes on to each transaction. All of these minutes will add up and translate to more labor expenses and fewer transactions completed.
If your software is more than a few years old, then it’s time to upgrade – technology has changed so much in the last decade. Seek a vendor that is able to easily upgrade your system and quickly get you back up and running. To keep you up to date, your vendor should also be able to recommend new and innovative add-on software modules and peripherals as they become available.
2. Stay organized
Your employees shouldn’t have to call a manager to the POS system for help each time they can’t find the right button or need to enter a modifier – and customers shouldn’t have to wait. Like outdated software, cluttered menu screens can slow your employees down while they complete transactions and compromise the speed of your service. Not to mention, being unorganized could cause employees to make expensive mistakes while entering items and promotions.
To reduce clutter, start by removing unused buttons. To ensure quick order entry with minimal mistakes, make sure your POS software allows you to customize your menu screens to include seasonal items, promotions, modifiers or tabs – and organize them by popularity and color. This can significantly reduce order-taking time.
3. Monitor labor
Effective labor management is one of the most effective ways to cut costs. Why schedule more employees than you need and spend more than you should? Restaurants can use their POS software to view detailed sales and labor reports and determine an optimal amount of labor for each shift. To remain profitable, restaurants should schedule enough employees to meet customer needs but no more than that. POS software features also allow you to forecast sales to plan ahead for promotional events, peak periods and seasonal overflow.
4. Go mobile
Mobile POS solutions are dual purpose because they save time while also generating more sales, making for a better restaurant experience and more profitable operations.
When you equip your employees with mobile POS devices, they can speed up the check-out process by busting lines and completing transactions tableside. Instead of customers having to form a single file line at the POS system, several guests can complete their transactions at once to prevent crowding and wasted time.
Mobile POS also allows restaurants to expand their operations to include outdoor seating or patios, remote catering events or tent sales to make more sales in more places. Think about how much you could grow your customer base by reaching more patrons in more areas.
Owning and operating a restaurant business can be tough – especially when the economy is weak and the competition is high. These simple time and money-saving tips can make all the difference.