Managing a restaurant is surely a daunting task. There are so many functions you need to monitor in a limited amount of time.
In this write up we will give you an extensive checklist of restaurant management tips. One that would cover all the critical arms of your restaurant business.
Let’s get started!
1. Keep your staff happy
Do you find yourself ignoring signals on how happy or motivated your staff is? If your staff loses interest, your restaurant’s health will go south. Way south.
Your staff includes your cooks, the waiters, guards, they have different roles but their objective is simple – keep the customers happy.
If you wish to do well you have to retain your employees. Keeping track of what makes your staff happy, will help you have a happy and stable workforce.
So how do you keep them happy?
- Listen: Organize sessions in which your staff can openly state what they like and what they do not like. Everyone wants to be heard. Address their pain-points and they will love to work for you.
- Incentivise: Reward hard work. Your staff wants to see their hard work paying off.
- Organise fun sessions: Work might drain your staff off their energy and enthusiasm. That, in turn, will reflect on their productivity. Organise fun sessions every now to give an occasional boost to your team’s morale.
2. Customer experience is key
Customers want to feel loved. Right from the moment, they step into your restaurant and even beyond the time they step out. Every interaction is important.
Here are the areas that contribute to forming your restaurant’s image in front of them.
- Great food
- Friendly staff
- Timely service
- Good ambience
These factors will govern their decision of coming back to you again. And also recommend you to their circles. As a manager, you must ensure that you give your customers a holistic experience.
How do you know how satisfied your customers are then?
- Ask them: This one is easy but often overlooked. Tell your staff to ask the customers if they liked the food and the overall experience. Ask them for feedback. Smile. Take feedback well both ways. People remember people. Encourage them to make relations.
- Feedback forms: Make use of feedback forms to collect data on customer experience. This could be done through objective, multiple choice questions and also detailed feedback sections.
But let’s be honest. Feedback is a bore. You need to ease that process as much as possible. We recommend an intuitive and chat-based feedback tool that is made for the way people communicate today.
3. Bring efficiency to your operations
When you open a restaurant, taking care of the finances and operations might not be a hell of a task initially. You may be inclined to track your inventory (scattered across multiple xl sheets) manually, the cash management is easily done on cash registers and so forth.
Now think bigger.
Say you have 10 outlets across 10 cities averaging 20-25 tables each. Orders are coming in, both offline and online. Now what? Welcome to the xl nightmare.
What do you do in this scenario? Here are some quick tips:
- Get a centralised restaurant management system where all your data gets stored.
- Hire a team that looks at each of the outlets and gives you reports on performance. Reports and dashboards make your real problems visible. So that you can act on them instantly.
- Do away with obsolete components such as cash registers or excels and spreadsheets.
- Maintain a restaurant analytics dashboard to be on top of all your numbers – inventory, finances, and the likes. Are there critical signs that you are overlooking?
4. Be updated on the latest technology
Technology plays a great role in simplifying your restaurant management process. Automation and process orientation are two essential aspects. Here are a few things to be aware of:
It is the focal point of your restaurant business. Your restaurant POS sits on top of all your key data. As you expand your business, your POS should be robust enough to grow with you. To best suit this scenario, a feature rich Cloud POS will help you keep pace with your expansion.
How? Cloud POS is superior to its legacy counterpart on several levels:
- Hosted on reliable local servers
- Automatic software updates to ensure your technology never gets old
- High data security & unlimited data storage
Restaurant Online Ordering has boomed with the growth of the internet, and the use of mobiles and apps. People prefer to order from the convenience of their homes. With the growth of mobile technology, websites and apps are now super easy to build.
Here are all the latest updates you need to build a standout online ordering system.
Management systems are now integrated like never before – your POS, third-party aggregator software, Online Ordering, Analytics, CRM are all made to work in tandem.
For instance, a CRM will only function if your POS punches in customer data well. Data helps software machine learn faster and when all systems are integrated, more informed decisions are made.
This has been the stand out feature of modern day technology which allows us to understand customer personas better than ever!
To be technology updated we would recommend you do the following:
- Shortlist one or two restaurant, food-tech blogs. You can try out Modern Restaurant Management or LimeTray’s blog. These blogs have a subscription option that helps you stay updated with tips, tricks and the latest from restaurant management.
- Talk to your fellow restaurateurs on what technology they are using (or thinking of using).
5. Employ managers who lead by example
Managers are assigned critical functions of a business and they must be on their toes throughout. They must have a positive attitude and lead by example.
Your manager should have ground training of all the functions of your restaurant – this allows him/her to understand the work of the staff, better empathise with their problems and develop an all-round knowledge of the restaurant.
6. Managing taxes, paperwork and everything legal
This is essential for your restaurant business. Don’t procrastinate on this one. These are some of the areas you need to have knowledge of:
- Tax compliance: all kinds of taxes you need to charge (service tax, delivery tax) and pay (income tax, business tax), PAN Card, tax documents.
- Company registration papers: Papers and documents which have your restaurant details, year of inception etc.
- Property papers: You need to have the Lease Papers or Ownership proof at all times.
- FSSAI papers: FSSAI paperwork, certificates and all the related food quality standards information.
- HR policies: Wage laws, employee protection laws, anti-harassment laws are a few examples of the legal aspect of the HR policies that need to be in place.
7. Don’t overlook marketing management
Marketing is always a tough cookie. Not only does it need constant creativity but thorough regularity. Here are a few tips for you:
- Ensure frequent updates on your website and app: Double check if the website is having that creative flavour that would get people to make more purchases. Test your website’s experience with your staff, colleagues, guests, family and friends. Get feedback and make changes. Keep trying new things till you hit the correct formula.
- Managing your CRM system: Once you have your customer’s data, automated CRM campaigns help stay relevant with them. Check if your campaigns are faring well by keeping a tab of open and click rates.
- Online business listings: check if your addresses are up on Google my business and other listings like TripAdvisor, Zomato etc.
- Update your social media frequently: Your posts should be a mix ranging from food photographs, customer reviews, happy employee snaps, latest restaurant updates, current affair topics. Add in multiple media types – videos, images, infographics.
For a complete list of marketing tips and ideas – do check this article.
Hope this checklist will help you manage your restaurant better. Let us know in the comments section if you have any more questions.
More power to you! 🙂