Recently we sat down with David Hopkins, President and Founder of The Fifteen Group, for a webinar in which he shared his insights on how to win in the restaurant industry using fundamental strategies every restaurant operator needs to know to attain success.
As David expanded on the three fundamental reasons why operators aren’t hitting their potential, webinar attendees were intrigued to learn more about David’s take on what software he recommended to achieve this palpable success.
As promised in the webinar, we wanted to get back to viewers with the answers to their questions, as expanded upon by David’s team of 30 professional restaurant consultants, who have helped over 1,000 restaurants across the country.
The following are insights into what software is needed to run a successful restaurant operation, as recommended by a team of Canada’s leading restaurant consultants.
What software do you need to operate a restaurant?
As we mention in our guide to restaurant technology, there are 8 traditional types of technology you might find in a restaurant, but this week we are going to ask the experts over at The Fifteen Group what they recommend and why.
We are going to touch on the following systems:
- Point of Sale (POS) systems
- Restaurant payroll software
- Scheduling software
- Time tracking or time clock
- Human resource management software
- Inventory management software
- Guest experience software
- Training software
So let’s dig in.
What POS software is recommended by the fifteen group experts?
Pos software is a key part of any restaurant business, it can manage many operational tasks such as ringing in food, managing inventory, streamline operations, increase sales and more. So what software does the fifteen group recommend and why?
Recommended platforms by experts: Silverware, Auphan
Why these platforms?
Silverware: software is both user-friendly for the manager/operator and the user. Silverware as a company is progressive and always in development to create tools that offer options to the restaurateur; accessibility, enhanced efficiency, and relevant analytics.
Auphan: specializes in POS software and business solutions for the hospitality industry and works to create a customized experience for its users. With a goal to simplify operations and collect and manage data for operators, they provide ongoing support with their integrated software for ease of automation and control.
What is the best restaurant payroll recommended by experts?
Restaurant payroll software is unique in that it has to factor in many elements that other establishments don’t have to consider, such as varying hourly wages, time tracking and overtime calculations and more, so what should one consider when choosing a restaurant payroll solution?
The key to choosing a great restaurant payroll solution is to choose something that has the following features:
- POS integration
- Automated payroll calculations
- Automated tax deductions
- Integrated scheduling and workforce management solutions
- Integrated time tracking
- Automated tip calculations
Recommended restaurant payroll platform:
Push is built for restaurants and it was created to help restaurant owners manage tricky things listed above, plus it integrates with leading restaurant POS systems, providing insights like never before. We recommend this platform because it covers all the bases when it comes to what you need to run a successful restaurant payroll
What is the best restaurant workforce management solution?
Workforce management, otherwise known as restaurant scheduling, and time tracking software are key in running a restaurant with many moving pieces. Also at times included in this solution are HR, and payroll. Essentially, it’s anything you need to successfully manage your employees and workforce.
Recommended workforce platform: Push Operations
Having an integrated solution is a unique and powerful thing when it comes to people management in a dynamic industry such as the restaurant industry. Experts recommend Push because it offers an end to end solution.
Staff come into the platform via the HR system, where self onboarding, ats tracking and customizable interview questions speed up the process.
Next schedules are made with the click of a button, and smart scheduling means that staff can request shift swaps, and managers can use labor forecast tools to ensure they don’t schedule any staff members into overtime.
Staff clock in using time tracking technology that uses facial recognition, geotracking and schedule syncs technology - meaning people can only clock in for their scheduled shifts. And once clocked hours are approved. Boom, everything is streamlined to payroll easy as the click of a button.
Inventory management solution recommended by experts.
Inventory management allows restaurant owners to cost and price their menus properly, manage inventory, avoid product shrinkage, track labour, and adhere to budgets, saving time and money.
Recommended platform: Navi (formerly Navigator)
Navi, a restaurant business management software, is an incredible, cloud-based industry tool that streamlines and simplifies the entire product cost control process. Navi’s features include menu recipe building and costing, menu profit maximization tools, a daily operational dashboard and effective control over the inventory management process. Best of all, Navi is designed to do all these things as simply as possible. Restaurant owners and managers are incredibly busy, but to be successful, all of the above needs to get done – Navi is the easy-to-use tool that makes that happen.
Guest experience software recommended by experts.
During the webinar guest specifically asked about David’s recommendations when it came to software that allows operators to capture customer experience feedback. They were looking for a tool that allowed them to collect customer preference data to better understand what elements of the customer journey they could improve.
Here’s David’s team's top picks.
Recommended platform: OpenTable
Most guests focus on using online review platforms to give feedback to the restaurant, such as reservation tools, Google, Yelp, Trip Advisor etc. The traffic to those tools is much higher than a separate platform for review and feedback management. OpenTable as a reservation tool allows the operator to manage reservations and guest traffic, market the business to a wide range of users, and manage guest reviews and feedback.
Alternative option: Single Platform, Tattle
Single Platform is a tool that brings online management to one place. Operators can manage their menus and post them to online sources such as their websites, online apps/sites such as OpenTable, Yelp etc. The tool also provides the option to gather all of the reviews from multiple sites and display them on a dashboard for the user. The system allows owners/managers the ability to respond quickly in one place and manage guest interactions.
Tattle allows customers to provide feedback through a platform that reimagines the traditional comment card. Their software is founded on enabling hospitality operators to gather customer experience feedback and connect with guests on a deeper level by collecting data and providing the opportunity to address operational challenges and potential opportunities.
Training apps recommended by experts.
David shares a powerful message to restaurant owners that training and motivating your staff to deliver a world-class guest experience is a fundamental pillar in their restaurant’s success. But what training apps might he recommend, especially when it comes to the younger workforce and Gen Z?
These tools are expensive, but they allow for consistency and transparency in training programs and ensure their success for larger restaurants or groups of restaurants. These tools put the training materials (documents, videos, power points, etc.) at the staff’s fingertips through web-based and app-driven programs. Employers can measure the time spent by employees as well as their success in engagement and testing. Posting the materials can be quite easy and gets them into the hands of employees very quickly.
What else do I need to know?
There is so much to know when it comes to running and launching a successful restaurant, but with the help of the experts at The Fifteen Group , understanding how to run a successful operation doesn’t have to be hard.
Check out the webinar below that we ran recently with David Hopkins, Founder of The Fifteen Group as he shares the 3 fundamental strategies that he recommends to help restaurant owners succeed!
Download the free webinar replay below.