Point of Sale
The core of our all-in-one restaurant management system
From food trucks to FSRs, get the POS built for restaurants.
By Katie McCann
There’s no equipment you would bring into your restaurant to hurt business operations, right? Look over to your counter and see if there’s a cash register sitting there.
While cash registers were a huge asset for businesses for years – no more counting cash by hand! – more modern solutions have been created to take their place. If your restaurant still uses a cash register, you’re relying on front-of-house staff to take orders via pen and paper and then input the proper amounts in the till. It might seem simple, but it leaves your operations open to errors and inefficiencies..
Despite inefficiencies, errors, and the availability of more modern options, many restaurateurs are still unsure about making the switch from their cash register to a modern POS.
But upgrading doesn’t have to scare you. It should be exciting – especially when you look at all the valuable business insights you’re currently missing out on by using a cash register.This article will tell you:
Ready? Let’s jump in.
You probably know the saying, “you don’t know what you don’t know.” Maybe you’re not aware of how a modern POS can really benefit your venue. Maybe the thought of implementing a new system puts you outside your comfort zone. Or maybe the investment of money and time for shopping around for a new POS, then equipment, and training just seems too daunting.
Whether it’s the comfort of familiar technology or the cost of changing systems that’s keeping you in old habits, it’s time to consider this possibility: Using a cash register may be costing you more in the long term – much more than it’s helping you save.
Want to find out how? Read on.
Here are eight ways taking orders with a cash register could be harming your restaurant and how a restaurant POS can help.
Is your front of house struggling to keep up with the pace of your business?
When your staff are trying to punch orders into a cash register, make change, pass orders to the kitchen or barista, the process can get messy and time consuming.
A modern POS can offer you mobility. Imagine trying to carry your cash register from table to table! A mobile POS makes it easier to enter orders and process transactions.
A mobile POS benefits both full service and quick service restaurants. If you run a full service restaurant, your servers can take orders at the table without writing them down or having to return to the counter to input an order. If you run a quick service restaurant, counter staff can work their way through the line and take orders on an iPad while the kitchen prepares the orders and the other staff process payments.
Without up-to-date menu management, you can’t identify top sellers or the items that aren’t moving. You’re in the dark, unaware of how dishes are performing beyond looking at what inventory is left at the end of the day and what you can piece together anecdotally. Menu design best practices can’t do much to help either, since the cash register can’t pull insights beyond the total sales amount. So you’re stuck guessing., .
That’s where a restaurant POS system comes in. The right POS system helps you:
If you’re finding some discrepancies between your sales numbers or inventory and what’s in the till, it may be that your employees are stealing from you. In fact, it’s more than likely if you consider that 75% to 85% of all theft is committed by employees, whether intentional or not. Because theft erodes your profit margins, the sooner you nip this problem in the bud, the better.
Luckily a restaurant POS can play a key role in your restaurant loss prevention strategy. Firstly, a restaurant POS tracks all orders. For servers to pick up an order from the kitchen, they have to type it into the POS. This includes all upsells, sides, everything.
Secondly, you can create permissions based on job role. You can set your POS so that only the manager can void or comp an item. This setting prevents potential misuse of voids, like servers from giving their friends a free meal.
Finally, any modern POS tracks inventory and sales, providing you with reports so you can compare the two to identify any discrepancies.
Speaking of inventory…
SAVA cash register won’t help you track inventory – you have to do all of this manually, which means it might not get done at all. And not being able to track inventory means you could be either over or understocked. Too much stock only leads to lost money from food waste. Too little stock means unfulfilled orders and disgruntled customers.
A POS tracks your inventory (by menu item or ingredient) so that you always know how much stock you have on hand. You’ll be able to identify when:
Overstaffing can cause labor costs to soar. Understaffing often means your team has to work extra hard to deliver customer service. The result? Customer service often suffers as the team is short-handed during peak times.
In these instances, you want to use a POS system that integrates with the scheduling software, like the TouchBistro with a 7shifts scheduling integration.
Order errors negatively affect customer experience and profits. Having to take orders by pen and paper and ring them up on the cash register leads to mistakes, even for the most seasoned servers.
Order errors can also easily occur due to miscommunication between the front and back of house. Maybe the server took down the order incorrectly or perhaps the kitchen misunderstood.
Regardless of the reasons for mistakes, order errors cost you time and money. Thankfully, they don’t have to.
Use the right restaurant POS and you can take tableside orders on a mobile device in both quick- and full-service restaurants.
Being able to take tableside orders has many benefits:
The point here is that a mobile POS reduces errors and improves communication. The end result is smoother, faster service and happy customers.
Technology isn’t perfect. But the data in your cash register is especially unsecured because it’s all kept on site. Think worst-case scenario – disasters can and do happen. Whether it’s a fire, flood, or hurricane, you don’t have the peace of mind that comes with knowing all your restaurant data is safe and accessible, no matter what comes your way.
On the other hand, certain POS systems automatically backup and secure your data in the cloud. This means that if your POS is damaged or stolen, you can still access this data from anywhere with an Internet connection.
If you’re using a cash register, you may also still be:
The good news? Some restaurant POS systems offer reservation management software that improves reservation management, enhances the guest experience, and boosts your bottom line by giving you the ability to:
Using a cash register may have been good enough in the past. But as technology evolves, you risk missing out on valuable business insights by not modernizing.
The solution is a modern restaurant POS – one that understands your business, improves your workflow, and boosts your sales.
Katie is a former Content Marketing Specialist at TouchBistro where she writes about food and restaurant experiences. She doesn’t shy away from the finer things in life, but no matter how much success she continues to acquire, she stays true to her roots and still considers imitation crab as gourmet. If she isn’t writing, you can find her on a patio with friends and a pitcher of white wine sangria.
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