Technology has come a long way since it was introduced to the restaurant industry. Restaurateurs used to have to find different tools to meet different needs. Unfortunately, these tools didn’t always communicate with each other and couldn’t always be accessed outside of the restaurant. Nowadays, restaurant operators can find everything they need to run their businesses on an all-in-one restaurant management system (RMS).
An RMS like TouchBistro is equipped with various capabilities. From a point of sale system and online ordering to reservations, gift cards, loyalty, marketing, and more, these tools work together to help you increase sales, deliver a standout guest experience, and save time and money.
In this guide to all-in-one restaurant management systems, you’ll learn:
- What a restaurant management system is
- What you can manage with an RMS like TouchBistro
- 4 benefits of an all-in-one restaurant management system
What Is a Restaurant Management System?
A restaurant management system (RMS) is a point of sale (POS) system that can handle fundamental transactions, but also supports other facets of running a restaurant, like marketing, online ordering, loyalty, and more. With an RMS, these additional features work seamlessly not only with the POS, but also with each other.
How Does an RMS Differ From a Standard POS?
A point of sale system performs transaction-related functions, such as order processing, menu management, and analytics. A restaurant management system encompasses multiple products that work alongside, and integrate seamlessly with, a POS to expand its functionality.
With an RMS like TouchBistro, for example, you can process transactions, manage a loyalty program, take online orders and reservations, sell and manage gift cards, and more.
What Can I Manage With an RMS Like TouchBistro?
You already know about some of the functions you can access when you expand your RMS with add-on tools. Now, here’s a closer look at exactly what a restaurant management system like TouchBistro can do for your restaurant.
Point of Sale
A point of sale system handles essential business functions. TouchBistro POS helps you process sales, manage your floor plan, menu, and staff, unlock business insights through analytics, take orders from the floor, and more.
In short, the POS is the core of your restaurant management software. It’s what all of the other tools in the system connect to and where data is collected, which helps power business decisions. One of the key benefits of TouchBistro POS is that it seamlessly integrates with TouchBistro Online Ordering, Loyalty, Marketing, Reservations, Gift Cards, Payments, and other guest engagement platforms so your data automatically flows from one solution to the next.
A restaurant online ordering system enables your business to accept and process payments for takeout and delivery orders directly through its website, so you can circumvent third-party ordering platforms.
With a solution like TouchBistro Online Ordering as part of your RMS, orders flow directly from your website to your POS. This means you’ll reduce your risk of errors, save time and money, and need fewer tablets on your countertop.
When online ordering information automatically syncs to your POS, you save time because you don’t have to manually input transactions or update inventory.
The beauty of an RMS is that its tools work together. When Online Ordering integrates with TouchBistro Loyalty, diners can earn and redeem rewards whether they order online or in-venue. This tool also works seamlessly with TouchBistro Gift Cards, so diners can pay for orders digitally. And, with our TouchBistro Marketing integration, customers can redeem promotions in-venue and online.
Driving repeat business is the name of the game when you incorporate a restaurant loyalty program into your RMS. This integration lets you capture guest details like birthdays, items purchased, and visit history so you can enhance the guest experience. You can think of this tool as a customer relationship management platform (CRM): a centralized repository for all of your customer data.
TouchBistro Loyalty lets you create flexible rewards, such as discounts and buy-one-get-X offers. Plus, members can check their progress with ease thanks to digital loyalty accounts and a branded customer web app.
When your loyalty program speaks to the rest of the tools in your RMS, you unlock powerful features. For example, TouchBistro Loyalty integrates with TouchBistro Marketing so you can combine guest data with advanced marketing tools for a 360-degree customer engagement solution – all on one restaurant management platform. And with the TouchBistro Online Ordering integration, diners can take part in item- and spend-based loyalty programs, and redeem rewards – both in-venue and online.
Keeping your restaurant top of mind is a breeze when you make an integrated marketing solution as part of your RMS. A seamless integration makes it easier to create enticing promotions that turn your existing guests into regulars.
TouchBistro Marketing, specifically, is equipped with tools like email templates, analytics, and a custom-branded web app. Integrations with the rest of the TouchBistro ecosystem unlock other features. When you also use the TouchBistro Loyalty integration, you can capture specific guest details like orders placed, average spend, last visit, and birthdays to create custom filters for your marketing campaigns. And with TouchBistro Online Ordering, you can send targeted promotions that customers can redeem in-venue and online.
When marketing solutions are part of your RMS, you can create promotional campaigns that turn first-time guests into regulars and bring lapsed customers back. Plus, you can supercharge your campaigns by leveraging tips and strategies from our restaurant marketing guide.
Gift cards help your restaurant drive immediate cash flow and repeat business. When you make gift card management part of your RMS and integrate that tool with your POS, you can access powerful reporting and end-of-year reconciliation support, which saves you time and money.
With TouchBistro Gift Cards, you can offer your customers both physical and digital vouchers. Your business can also include gift cards as part of promotions and generate revenue for future use.
And with a TouchBistro Payments integration, diners can buy and send gift cards online. Gift Cards also integrates with TouchBistro Online Ordering, so recipients can redeem gift cards when placing online orders. Plus, with our TouchBistro Loyalty integration, customers collect points and earn rewards while redeeming their vouchers.
A restaurant reservations system allows guests to book tables directly through your website and a number of online touchpoints. When your reservations software integrates with your RMS, it helps keep everything in one place, making it easier for front-of-house and back-of-house teams to work together.
With TouchBistro Reservations added to your RMS, you can easily manage capacity and enhance the guest experience with reservation reminders, two-way guest communication, and reservation notes.
4 Benefits of an All-in-One Restaurant Management System
Now that you understand what you can do with an all-in-one RMS like TouchBistro, let’s explore the benefits of using all-in-one restaurant management software.
1. Streamlined Operations
When all of your tools integrate with your POS, you gain access to 360-degree control over every facet of your business. Seeing everything in one place streamlines operations and increases efficiency.
Not to mention, when all of your tools work with each other, you benefit from enhanced reporting. With this panoramic, data-driven view of your restaurant, you can ultimately make more informed business decisions.
2. More Sales
All-in-one restaurant management systems increase your opportunities to bring in revenue. When you can take orders and process payments online, give customers the option to buy gift cards, and send irresistible marketing offers, you grow your income streams and create more ways to drive sales.
3. Enhanced Guest Experience
Restaurant management software can help you make every dining experience a memorable one. When all orders go through the same restaurant management platform, your kitchen is always working on the right order, at the right time. You can guarantee order accuracy and reduce wait times.
An all-in-one RMS also helps you serve customers in more ways: on-premises, off-premises, order ahead, schedule pickups, delivery, and more. When your RMS is equipped with a loyalty program, you can reward regulars for their business and keep them coming back for more.
4. Time & Money Savings
From helping you find cost savings to improving internal communication, an RMS can save your business time and money in a number of ways.
According to TouchBistro’s State of Restaurants Report in 2022, inventory costs are the greatest source of financial strain for restaurateurs. With inventory management features, an RMS can help you reduce food waste and spend less on ingredients.
With improved FOH-to-BOH communication due to an integrated system, the right orders get sent to the kitchen every time. This means you’ll spend less time and money correcting errors.
Enhanced reporting also helps you make the right business decisions from the start. Your menu engineering and promotions efforts will be more successful when they’re backed by data.
And, with direct online ordering and reservations, you can save up to 40% on commissions and cover fees.
Running a restaurant is challenging, but technology is making things easier for restaurateurs. Gone are the days when restaurant operators had to look for tools from various vendors, without a guarantee that they’d function together, every time they wanted to introduce a new revenue stream or capability. Today, all-in-one restaurant management systems like TouchBistro have simplified operations for busy restaurateurs. These powerful systems help operators increase sales, save time and money, streamline operations, and enhance the guest experience.