Restaurant Inventory Management: Setting Up for Success

By Tricia Hoy

Inventory systems are a critical component in running a restaurant business. Cheese, meat, flour, and beverages are “cash on your shelves” and as important to your net income as the sales you generate. Consider these tips for keeping tabs on these valuable—and highly perishable—assets.

How much money do you have tied up in inventory? To limit waste and spoilage, industry consultants recommend keeping no more than a week’s worth of stock on hand. And with food costs on the rise, managing inventory and limiting waste is more important than ever. 

Here are a few tips to set up inventory tracking software successfully:

Define consistent and complete recipes. The first step in preparing to use inventory software is to define your recipes. If you enter incomplete recipes or incorrect quantities, your ideal usage and final food cost numbers will be off-target.  Be sure your recipes are accurately measurable too: a pinch of this or a handful of that won’t translate to a software solution.

Set up unit of measure conversions. Setting custom unit of measure conversions correctly is a crucial step during setup. You may buy an item in one unit of measure (Purchase Units), but stock or count it in another (Stocking or Count Units), and use it in yet another in your recipes (Usage Units).

Accurate inventory usage tracking depends on these unit conversions.

Implement portion control on the make line.  Portion control problems become immediately apparent when you implement inventory tracking software. Vigilant consistency in weighing and measuring ingredients is one key to controlling food cost—because there is no way around it: free-handing toppings rarely results in accurate portioning.

Inventory software helps you identify and close the gap between actual usage (how much food you use) and ideal usage (how much food you should have used, based on your recipes and sales).

Thinking about using inventory software to control food costs?  Take the guesswork and stress out of inventory management with accurate inventory tracking in your point of sale system.

Posted on Thu, Oct 30, 2014 @ 11:10 AM.
Updated on April 15, 2019 @ 8:37 PM PST.

Posted by Tricia Hoy

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Tags: portion control, Restaurant Management, SpeedLine Inventory

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