Restaurant Inventory Software Tips

 In 1. David Scott Peters, Food Costs, SMART Systems, Video Blog

Restaurant inventory software is a fast and efficient way to get a better handle on your restaurant inventory processes. If you’ve tried using the inventory module in your POS system and ended up with nothing more than a countdown of what you have sold, then you know the frustration of overpromising. Watch this video or read below to learn what restaurant inventory software should do for your restaurant.

Look for these four things

There are four things you should get out of your restaurant inventory software.

  1. First is it has to do the arithmetic. It has to give you your cost of goods sold.
  2. Second thing your restaurant inventory program should do for you is store your batch recipes for the most accurate food cost.
  3. Third thing it should do is allow you to do shelf-to-sheet inventory.
  4. Finally, the fourth thing your restaurant inventory software should do for you is allow you to scan invoices so they are accessible in a digital form. This makes everything more accurate, pricing up to date and your inventories are more accurate with the correct prices.

If your restaurant inventory software doesn’t have these four elements, you are not getting an accurate take on your food and pour costs.

Why restaurant inventory matters

What does cost of goods sold refer to? In the most basic terms, cost of goods sold is “the cost of the product used to generate sales.”

The cost of goods sold calculation is used to calculate a cost of goods sold percentage for a given accounting period. The cost of goods sold calculation is also most valuable when it is broken down by categories, i.e., food, liquor, bottle beer, draft beer and wine. This is more effective when broken into categories because if, for instance, the pour cost is high, you can determine where the problem is. You can react by examining your draft system for problems due to foaming issues, because your draft numbers are high. Otherwise, if liquor pour cost had all categories lumped in one figure, you would not know where to look for the problem without redoing all of your work.

You can’t create your recipe costing card unless you first create a batch recipe costing card for the items that make up a menu item. For example, let’s say you sell an “All American Burger.” It comes on a roll with cheese, bacon, caramelized onions and toppings. You have to account for these items as well. The batch recipe includes bacon by the slice, caramelized onions, burger setup (two slices of tomato and a single leaf lettuce) and six-ounce portion bag of potato wedges. These are all ingredients, side dishes and product conversions that need to be cost out properly to complete the item recipe costing card.

Shelf-to-sheet inventory involves setting up your inventory count sheets according to the order your inventory appears on the shelf. This ensures accurate counts based on accurate sizes. This also allows you to be fast.

Scanning invoices so you have digital versions gives you an automated way to track inventory, pricing and ordering.

To determine your usage for cost of goods sold:

  • Take your beginning inventory
  • Add your purchases
  • Then subtract your ending inventory

If you would like to learn more about restaurant inventory and how restaurant inventory software can help your restaurant, read our free special report, Breaking Away from the Insanity: How to easily take control of your restaurant and make more money. Download it here. Be sure to visit our YouTube channel for more helpful restaurant management video tips. 

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