Thinking about how to improve restaurant efficiency? Every restaurant wants to grow and make meaningful changes in the name of self-improvement.
For all restaurants efficiency isn’t just about the good use of a workforce’s time and energy — it’s specifically about maximising table turnover, ensuring guests arrive on time, and saving money as well as precious minutes on the clock.
Overall, efficiency is about bolstering profits. There is always something about your restaurant that you can improve on, and a restaurant host app can be a massive help.
Here are our top five restaurant efficiency tips to help boost your restaurant’s growth.
1 — Quick Table Management
The best way to promise a customer a positive dining experience from the get-go is to provide them with a clean table.
A proper table plan ensures customer satisfaction and prevents double-bookings, managing
- guest numbers
- traffic patterns
- seating timeframes
All restaurants know that a well-made table plan creates an adequate workload for staff.
A good restaurant floor plan is like a bee colony — similar to worker bees, each team member has an allocated area to cover, efficiently serving their section’s needs.
As evenings get busier, careful table distribution will prevent members of staff from being overworked or flustered. Five tables per server’s area, for example, can keep indoor operations running smoothly.
Knowing your restaurant’s table plan is essential to maximising revenue. A fair idea of how long guests are dining out means you can enhance table turnover. If you’re a reservation-based restaurant considering time limits on tables, check out our article on guest limits for more restaurant efficiency tips.
All in all, restaurants that effectively manage tables create a better experience for customers — and help to reinforce your restaurant’s efficiency.
A restaurant host app offers an overhead view of your floor plan, identifying how many tables you have, including the places where bigger parties can be seated. At a glance, staff now have a clear idea of how the restaurant is booked for the day, preventing any confusion and saving your restaurant time.
Figure 1. Wooden Tables by WineCountry Media via Flickr
2 — Convenient Incentives
Using an app your restaurant can send push notifications, including quick notes on both special offers and discounts. For instance, if some restaurant regulars book with you, front-of-house staff can offer a loyalty plan via the app.
Or if it’s a new customer, you can always sprinkle outgoing SMS messages with details about various incentives — new deals and menu specials. An app’s 2-way communication features allow staff to send over this information to waiting customers.
Plus with customisation features, you can season outgoing SMS messages with URL codes and details of daily events (e.g. deal of the day); perhaps even linking to your restaurant’s social media page to get customers excited about the meal ahead.
Market research has shown the efficacy of mobile incentive programmes. In 2015 on Black Friday a US-based casual restaurant chain ran a mobile loyalty programme, giving customers double points for dining out on that day.
This quickly turned into a success story: The restaurant’s offer generated over 60 percent more business than usual. This worked due to personalisation — interaction with customers on their phones, a device that rarely leaves anybody’s side.
Customer conversations are also important for restaurants, big or small. For instance, a referral programme works two ways, attracting extra business whilst offering the customer something too.
Present gift cards to returning customers or customers who successfully share your restaurant’s page X amount of times, all with the handy touch of an app. Now more than ever it is easier for restaurants to enhance the efficiency of their marketing strategies with very little effort.
Figure 2. Businesswomen by Rawpixel Ltd via Flickr
3 — Smooth Rotas
An app offers a helping hand when it comes to calculating the number of staff members needed.
Let’s say you have a first-come-first-served restaurant and fifty people join your virtual queue; their wait averages 40—60 minutes. As such, you can monitor your rota and calculate the staff hours needed.
Not to mention an app can offer a fair idea of your busiest periods. Quieter shifts during the day for instance will mean fewer people are waiting; your restaurant needs less staff on site. Thus your rota corresponds with the size of your virtual guestlist.
Suffering from over-staffing? With restaurant efficiency metrics, a restaurant hosting app can offer you information on average guest numbers on certain days, certain times. Find out how all this works.
4 — Fast Mobile Orders
Offering something like an online menu can cut time on employee order taking. You can reduce the chance of human errors as customers fill out forms for allergies or special requests.
Mobilise solutions, a software consultant, has recorded that average order prices go up with mobile orders: Customers now have extra time to decide, while suggestions for side dishes pop up automatically on-screen.
Another recent report found that two-fifths of hospitality customers felt that technology improved their dining out experience. So fast mobile orders are a good idea.
Leading apps may present your restaurant with a wider audience via mobile ordering, but will inevitably charge significant service fees. These aggregator fees, Hospitality Net has noted, require careful consideration. Fees over 30 percent of every processed order ensure to cut down your restaurant’s overall revenue.
Carbonara App now has an in-built drinks pre-ordering feature for all restaurant types. Customers who either join your waitlist or book a table receive an SMS message with an inserted link, guiding them to a drinks pre-purchase page. The best thing is — it’s completely free, without any transaction costs being deducted whatsoever.
Read more about how this exciting new feature helps your restaurant create a positive guest experience, at once enhancing trade and serving guests as soon as they enter the door.
Figure 3. The Chopper by Gauthier Delecroix via Flickr
5 — Simple Free App
Outside of this, many food industry apps also charge commission prices — inefficient options for all restaurants.
So why pay? Today, you can choose a free app that
- boosts table management
- shares incentives to increase guest numbers
- cuts down on mishandled staff rotas
- enhances trade with efficient mobile orders, including drinks pre-ordering
Thinking about how it works? Why not try it out? Carbonara App is the first-ever truly free restaurant system that helps hospitality venues improve overall efficiency.
Promoting productivity with Carbonara App, your restaurant has nothing to lose.
Still wondering how to make your restaurant more efficient? Queries, comments, or feedback? Contact us and tell us about what restaurant efficiency means to you.
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