http://www.integrated-marketing.co.za/http://web9.co.za/

How restaurants can manage their finances

restaurants - financesrestaurants - finances
restaurants - financesrestaurants - finances

 

How restaurants can manage their finances

You have the business plan, the logo, the location and the secret recipes – supposedly the “hard” part is over. But the most important aspect of owning and running a restaurant is the finances.

If you’re a restaurant owner and looking for a few tips regarding money management and solutions, then you’ve come to the right place.

 

What to do with the initial capital

Well, there’s a lot of equipment that needs to be bought… after all the furnishing, flooring and decorating that is. Oh, and there are the other little things like cutlery, crockery, business cards, telephones, serviettes, menus, cleaning products, etc.

But what about ovens, hobs, dishwashers, extractor fans, deep fryers, warming racks, blenders, fridges and freezers for the kitchen? Your best options are to look out for asset finance solutions because you’re going to need all the financing you can get, to get started.

There are so many areas of the restaurant that need to be designed, shined and built-up before opening day and that is what your initial capital is for. You need it to get the whole place ready for production and service as soon as the doors open and the first customers walk in.

 

Managing day to day money

Money will constantly be coming and going both in the front and back-of-house. Front-of-house generally bringing profit in via customer orders and back-of-house being the expenses from produce bought to create the food people are willing to pay for.  

If you want to successfully manage your day to day monies, your best bet is to work with a point of sales system (POS). Not only will it be able to monitor spend and sales, but it can even double as a credit card processor. It will organise the communication between waitrons on the floor and chefs in the kitchen with regards to orders and will keep you informed on popular meals as well as food usage.

Where technology can integrate various functions through one system, it will make general management of the restaurant easier, not only the financial aspect of it.  

 

Setting up a marketing budget

When it comes to finances – don’t forget about a marketing budget. If you want to see the money come in, you first have to send it out. And by “send it out”, we mean through advertising and marketing campaigns.

Start out with a small budget, if you don’t have a lot of capital floating around, and experiment with social media marketing. You can set your own budgets per campaign and for specific time periods and you have the ability to stop the campaign depending on how happy or unhappy you are with the engagement and conversion results.

 

Keeping up with payroll

This is an area where you need to find the right balance based on the number of customers your restaurant can hold and the necessary capacity of staff needed in the kitchen to keep up with all the customers.

Overstaffing means you’ll be spending a lot of money on salaries and waitrons are likely to earn fewer tips during a shift. And understaffing can lead to dissatisfied customers and negative reviews that won’t help the reputation you’re trying to build through your marketing efforts. Find the balance and divide the day into equal shifts with equal opportunity if possible.

 

Saving money in the process

Now, it’s great to know and be able to manage your daily, monthly and annual finance shenanigans, but the challenge comes in when you have to start saving money in the process. And it is possible.  

A few ways to save money in your restaurant today include:

  • Going green: Energy-efficient appliances and light fixtures will save you money on the utility bills. Not to mention, customers love a business that works towards conserving the environment and it will make for a great marketing campaign.
  • Specifying your menu: With fewer items on the menu, there is less of a chance that money will be wasted and your monthly grocery bill will also decrease dramatically.
  • Frequency of deliveries: Having more than one supplier can end up being quite costly with the multiple delivery fees that come once or twice every week. If you can decrease the frequency of your deliveries in a week, you’ll be able to save money. And if you can worm your way down to one or two suppliers, there’s a good chance you’ll be able to negotiate better prices for your goods as well.

 

Eventually, you’ll get into the routine of an average week at the restaurant and it’s important to take note on all the comings, goings, successes and mishaps, so that you can be prepared for the following week and work towards making it a better one.

 

restaurants - finances