We often hear how technology is destroying human interaction. But in the restaurant business the very opposite may be true. There are great technologies out there that will actually free up time so that management can spend more time interacting with customers and staff.
Below are just a few of the time consuming tasks that can be performed with the use of a tablet or smart phone; getting managers out of the office and back out on the floor.
Managers need to be aware of food and labor costs at all times. Instead of having to run back to the office in the middle of a busy shift, these reports can be accessed real-time from anywhere; allowing managers to make fast, informed business decisions driven by data.
Employee schedules will always be a moving target. Having the ability to view, add, drop or swap shifts and deliver it to employees’ smart phones is an amazing advancement from the excel spreadsheet with handwritten notes all over it. Many apps also provide manager tools such as projected labor costs based on forecasts and overtime alerts to help reduce costs.
Taking inventory is a tedious but very necessary task. Instead of manually counting each item, recording the number on the count sheet, then entering it into the computer, it is now possible to enter in counts directly into a mobile device as they are taken. This eliminates steps from the process which saves time and reduces the chance of human error.
Owners and/or managers can spend less time playing investigator on why costs are out of line with forecasts. Working hand-in-hand with the inventory app, a good recipe application can save money by providing a theoretical usage and recipe costing by exposing waste, recipes not being followed, and even theft.
POS Payment Processing
Table side payment processing is becoming increasingly more popular. Guests are able to pay when they are ready and do not have to wait for their server to process the payment at a terminal that could be on the other side of the restaurant. A win-win for both customer and server!
Reservation apps are not only fast and accurate, they free up the hosts’ time so that they can focus on the guests in front of them instead of being tied to the phone.
The number of new software offerings available can be overwhelming. Fortunately, most software apps are offered by module so restaurants can pay for only what they need. This means that business can try out a few and see how they like them without purchasing the entire suite. After seeing how automating common administrative work frees up time and saves money, technology savvy restaurants can then add new modules as budget allows.