Top 4 Restaurant Management Tips to Help Grow Your Business in 2018
Who hates to run a restaurant that makes the competitor’s eyes pop in envy? Running a profitable business in an industry where change is the only thing that remains constant is not easy. It’s one of those tasks that require patience, diligence and unwavering commitment to increasing performance.
A good restaurant manager needs to understand hot buttons they’ll need to press to make both the guests and employees happy. And as a result, keep profiting even in the face of stiff competition.
But most importantly, you need to continually keep a pulse on emerging trends to avoid disappointing guests and as a result, falling behind competitors.
Here are four essential tips successful restaurant managers will be taking advantage of to remain competitive in the new year.
1. Change or Upgrade your Restaurant’s Point of Sale System
The business landscape in the year 2018 will be data-powered. More sophisticated and efficient software systems for restaurants are coming to fore to solve the tech-induced challenges. That means restaurants will need more than just a conduit that helps wait staff make orders to the kitchen staff.
For example, some quick service restaurants are now moving towards customers’ self-service systems and kiosks. Instead of waiting on the line to be served, the restaurants will ‘devolve‘ some of these activities to the customers. It will reduce the workload of your staff, and give them more flexibility and free up time resources for other equally important events.
Here are some great questions to ask yourself.
- Is your POS helping you grow your business or are you just plugging along?
- Does your system support your inventory management needs and does it aid in reducing food cost?
- Are you getting those actionable business insights about your customer behavior you’re looking for to increase revenue?
- Is your point-of-sale user-friendly and cost-effective?
If the answer is no to most of these questions, then you’ll need to upgrade or start using a completely different POS system for your restaurant to begin growing your business.
2. Invest in Your Employees
So far, you know why it pays to have efficient software for your restaurant. And you are going to upgrade your restaurant management software. While that would be good news for your restaurant, it would be a huge sin if you completely forget about improving the skill of your employees. For them to deliver in the highly changing restaurant business environment, you have to take your employees’ training a notch higher.
Make sure your employees get the proper training they need to use any new restaurant technology. Train them about how to use videos and online resources – more modern interactive tech environments that make it easy for them to understand the systems as opposed to reading the manuals supplied by the vendors. Also, have a list of all support contacts to make their lives easier when help is needed.
Remember their productivity depends on their working conditions. Make sure that they have comfortable working conditions. Also, make sure they have an open environment to offer recommendations and ideas to improve the work environment and workflow.
When it comes to employee management, you have to be one of them. Interact with them, and hold regular meetings. It should not be always about work and improving working conditions. Invest your time in your employees. Interact with them, and find out their challenges. Help them solve any difficulties or problems they face. All successful restaurants work as a team and communicate regularly.
Also, find ways of incentivizing them to be more productive. Consider funding other activities outside of work such as annual retreats or company parties based on hitting performance marks.
3. Focus on Improving Your Customer’s Experience
You have trained your employees to slay the intimidating tech behemoth. Then next thing on the line will be finding out how customers are experiencing your business.
How do your visitors feel when they visit your business website? Does your site look tacky and off-putting? Look for their reaction. Redesign if need be. And then integrate the technology that your customers are using to add more to their dining experience.
Also, your customer management software should give your diners an opportunity to be heard by providing a channel for them to leave feedback – think Google, Yelp, Facebook. Through feedback, you will identify the areas of the restaurant that need improvement. Good feedback will work harder than your best sales team to bring in more diners at your restaurant. Receive negative feedback often? Respond to the negative input with professionalism and consider the feedback as a way to improve your operations.
Besides, the atmosphere you create can make or break your customer’s dining experience. You don’t want to be brushed off as just another roadside diner. Neatness and aesthetics affect the perfect of quality and value. So – line things up, decorate and arrange everything properly.
4. Hire the Best Employees – The Crème de la Crème of the Industry
You will find a smart, highly talented and experienced brain to make sense of the analytics generated your restaurant management software. Employees determine the success and are the cornerstone of your restaurant. They will decide how fast your restaurant grows or how fast your business goes on a downward spiral.
The productivity of your staff will be mostly dependent on the way you’ll recruit and onboard them into your restaurant. If you are not sure how you can fish for the best from the muck of half-baked professionals, your expensive software for restaurants won’t be of any help. You may want to engage a professional HR consultancy firm or use an online service like shiftgig.com to find candidates fast and easy.
The professionals will not only help you to identify the best employees, but they also will help you effortlessly onboard them into your business system. They will train them about the new positions, evaluate their performance, and recommend the ones that are good for keeps.
There is still a lot you can do to improve your businesses bottom lines. You don’t want to sin and get edged out of business by highly aggressive competitors. To be on the safe side, think about the evolving tech space. And how your business is tech-evolution ready. Think about your staff. Motivate them. And empower them through training.
The most significant sin you can commit as a manager is getting edged out of business while your competitors keep fattening their bank accounts. Don’t be that business.
Restaurant management is not for the faint of heart, it’s an absolute must to be on top of your game when it comes to increasing revenue, managing employees, and growing your business at every possible level. These few restaurant management tips are only the beginning to help you become the best restaurant manager and to improve your customer’s experience. Because when you upgrade your customer’s experience, you put more money in everyone’s pocket in the long run.