Restaurant Inventory Management: Setting Up for Success

Cans_shelf_smallInventory systems are a critical component in running a restaurant business. Cheese, meat, flour, and beverages are “cash on your shelves” and as important to your net income as the sales you generate. Consider these tips for keeping tabs on these valuable—and highly perishable—assets.

How much money do you have tied up in inventory? To limit waste and spoilage, industry consultants recommend keeping no more than a week’s worth of stock on hand. And with food costs on the rise, managing inventory and limiting waste is more important than ever.

Here are a few tips to set up inventory tracking software successfully:

Define consistent and complete recipes. The first step in preparing to use inventory software is to define your recipes. If you enter incomplete recipes or incorrect quantities, your ideal usage and final food cost numbers will be off-target.  Be sure your recipes are accurately measurable too: a pinch of this or a handful of that won’t translate to a software solution.

Set up unit of measure conversions. Setting custom unit of measure conversions correctly is a crucial step during setup. You may buy an item in one unit of measure (Purchase Units), but stock or count it in another (Stocking or Count Units), and use it in yet another in your recipes (Usage Units).

Accurate inventory usage tracking depends on these unit conversions.

Implement portion control on the make line.  Portion control problems become immediately apparent when you implement inventory tracking software. Vigilant consistency in weighing and measuring ingredients is one key to controlling food cost—because there is no way around it: free-handing toppings rarely results in accurate portioning.

Inventory software helps you identify and close the gap between actual usage (how much food you use) and ideal usage (how much food you should have used, based on your recipes and sales).

Thinking about using inventory software to control food costs?  Take the guesswork and stress out of inventory management with accurate inventory tracking in your point of sale system.

SpeedLine User of the Month: Papa Mike’s Brick Oven Pizza

38596_134543429903243_552088_nFor 43 years, Joe DeDona has been serving pizza in Brooklyn and loving every minute of it. He often fits in a trip to the International Pizza Expo, and we have had the pleasure of some quick visits there. A longtime SpeedLine user, Joe is always one to talk to us about his restaurant and how SpeedLine has helped the business grow.

An interview with Joe DeDona, Papa Mike’s Brick Oven Pizza in Brooklyn, NY. Read more

Restaurant Pro Tips: Cutting Labor Costs

business-people_000001227086small1Employee costs are a significant portion of any business’ expenses. Your staff are the front line to great customer service, and improper scheduling—whether over or under—can cut into your profit for a shift. So what can you do to control your labor costs while keeping profits up? Read more

Delivery Areas and Fees: Getting Them Right

Restaurant operators lose thousands each year in delivery fees charged inconsistently, or set too low to recover expenses. The new fall release of SpeedLine POS expands on the ability to set delivery zones and fees by drive time, now allowing you to refine your zones—editing them by hand on a map for accurate zones and fees that reflect the true cost of delivery.

And for multi-unit operations, it provides flexible options to import and manage zones for multiple locations. Read more

Meeting Customer Expectations: Automated Delivery Confirmations

emailconfirmationsThe technology on your front counter can provide multiple ways to streamline business and improve customer service. We’ve already shared some ways to use your POS in Smart Operators: Great Customer Service Starts with Your Restaurant POS, but in the fall release of SpeedLine POS, we added a new method: automated delivery confirmation emails. Read more

Controlling the Drive Factor: the Key to On-Time Delivery

Profitable delivery is the focus of today’s new SpeedLine software release.

If you struggle with late deliveries and drivers, now you can solve the delivery time dilemma with new control over the drive factor—for consistent on-time deliveries. Read more

Online + Offline: Understanding Delivery Customer Purchase Preferences

Mobile.online ordering_image courtesy of Stuart Mile FreeDigitalPhotos.netIn a recent post on the PizzaMarketplace blog, OLO CEO Noah Glass made the comment that online ordering provides “the holy grail of customer-level data.”

He has a point. Web and mobile ordering have opened up a new level of access to customer information—for restaurant companies without delivery, it may be the first opportunity to build a comprehensive database of customer information. Read more

Restaurant Trends: Consumers Are Dining Out More. Are You Attracting Their Business?

iStock_000039370696MediumA new report from American Express revealed that consumers are spending 40% more dining out this year than they did in 2013. That’s a significant jump: if you aren’t seeing an increase in sales, your competition is.

So what are you doing to attract new business? Here are five ways to attract new guests, and keep them coming back: Read more

12 More Fridays Until Christmas: Holiday Restaurant Marketing Ideas that Work

holiday marketing_Image courtesy of imagerymajestic at FreeDigitalPhotos.netDoesn’t it seem like holiday marketing starts earlier every year? I know I started my shopping last January, but that’s because I am a sucker for a deal, and have a closet full of gifts I’ve forgotten about by Christmas time. But for most, holiday spending starts somewhere in October or November and continues until December 24th, and as a restaurant operator you have a fantastic opportunity to attract tired shoppers who want something quick and convenient for dinner. Read more

SpeedLine User of the Month: Piecasso’s Pizzeria & Lounge

885F80R6Fresh off the cover story in the August issue of PMQ magazine, SpeedLine user Piecasso’s Pizzeria & Lounge in Stowe, VT was an easy choice for user of the month. For generations, the Rovetto family has been slinging delicious pizzas, and with some recent media coverage, they’re excited at the recognition of their flare for the unique in decor, ambiance, and menu.

An interview with Eduardo Rovetto, owner, Piecasso’s Pizzeria & Lounge. Read more