Stocking a bar requires a delicate balance between having enough product on hand and not tying up resources in inventory that ends up sitting on the shelves collecting dust. The more bottles that sit unused, the less money you have to put back into the business. This is one of the main challenges that bars face when trying to become or remain profitable. In fact, there are 4 important facts about sitting inventory that you need to know in order to operate a successful bar business.
Ask ten different people in the hospitality industry what they think about bartender school, and you'll probably get ten different answers. It's no wonder there are so many opinions, given the variety in quality of instructors, content covered by the course, and placement assistance offered by schools. There are also differences in pricing (around fifty bucks online to five-hundred for a top shelf class) that means you may be looking at a pretty serious time and financial investment.
If you're a bar owner or manager, you probably didn't get into the industry because you love doing paperwork and taking inventory. Chances are, you like people and creating a welcoming environment where patrons can enjoy a good drink and let their hair down a little. The good news is that the market is full of mobile apps that will allow you to spend less time in the office crunching numbers and shuffling papers - and more time doing the things you love. Here are the must-have mobile apps for bar managers that will help you do just that:
Originally posted by Cabaret Designers (http://www.cabaretdesigners.com/2015/design-buzz/entry/productive-bar-design-state-audit-peace-of-mind-with-bevinco)
Have you ever been the victim of a restaurant sales tax audit by your state liquor commission? Would you be prepared to write a check for $98,000 for such a demand? The first thing most people do in this situation is hire an attorney and a CPA who specialize in this type of claim, but it may be too late. After all, have you ever attempted to produce four years’ worth of sales and inventory records? According to a recent State of Ohio audit study (see below), over 80% of bars and nightclubs exceed the state allowance for shrinkage? Friends, is this the position you want to be in? For a minimal weekly charge, you could be a Bevinco client who not only saves thousands every year…you probably wouldn’t have a thing to worry about when facing a dreaded state audit. Why? Because Bevinco clients enjoy the peace of mind that comes with having the industry’s tightest inventory and documentation controls.
I think it's fair to say most bartenders are confident by nature-- projecting confidence, at least, is implicitly part of their job description. Confidence is desirable to a degree, of course, but when it crosses the line to cockiness or worse it can become problematic, not only to the patrons a cocky bartender inevitably off-puts, but because of squandered profits as well. An obvious example is the lack of urgency all too many bartenders have when it comes to ringing up transactions, begging the question: Whats the most common reason drinks get left off my secret shopper's tab?
Many bar operators do not collect their customers contact information for their restaurant marketing program, nor do they have a follow-up strategy to communicate continuously with their clients outside of the restaurant or bar. The policy of keeping a list of your present customers email address and preferences is a cost effective way to increase sales and get new customers into your bar. Here are three reasons why you need to keep an internal list of all your regular guests and start marketing directly to them:
The company started using Bevinco at The Short North Pint House when it first opened in 2013 after hearing from other operators about Bevinco, along with utilizing the company to help them defend a sales tax audit at one of their older locations. With two locations in the Short North, Corso Ventures has come to rely on Bevinco to assist with bar inventory every week.
Before Corso Ventures started using Bevinco at this bar, their shrinkage numbers were coming in at 21% loss. Now they are consistently under 3%. Chris Corso says he makes back at least 20 times annually Bevinco’s cost of service.
Most POS systems are marketed as solutions for inventory control, accuracy and speed of service.
Ironically, our Sculpture Hospitality analysts find during our restaurant discovery audits that most major POS systems are programmed and installed in a manner that slows down service and requires re-programming for proper inventory control and accuracy.
Note: Consult with your attorney to discuss the Department of Labor ruling on overtime exemptions as they relate to your restaurants salaried employees.
Not sure if you should promote your doubles, or encourage staff to stick with serving singles? The word in the field is that many of you are asking the same question. So, we decided to do some research, and discovered that the profitability of doubles is driven by multiple factors, which vary according to location, staff practices, time of year, bar pricing structure and customer habits.
Restaurant General Managers have it tough.
Long unsociable hours, snappy customers, equipment breakdowns, late deliveries, salespeople harassing them, employees claiming they were underpaid, owners on their back about last month’s numbers, suppliers wanting to be paid… the list goes on and on. There is hardly an opportunity for time off and when they are finally able to get a day to themselves and are on the verge of relaxing, they get a call from their assistant saying the world is ending and they need to come back immediately.
To get people talking about your bar, embrace an approach to social media that goes beyond the occasional Facebook post or tweet that their daily lunch special is now available. After all, social media is no longer the new technology. Today it seems everyone is on social media, fighting for what little attention remains in a world of digital noise. How does an operator use social media to stand out above and beyond the competition? Here are three ideas to use social media to promote your bar and get your message heard.
Restaurant and bar managers should take an interest in helping their staff earn higher tips. Perhaps the most important reason is that your employees rely on tips to make a decent living.
Higher income means higher job satisfaction and lower turnover. Also, motivated servers do a better job up-selling - which means higher profit and revenue for your operation. Indirectly, tip levels are one measure of the degree of service at your establishment.
Finally, Robert Plotkin has noted, “when bartenders are earning sizeable amounts of gratuities, they presumably won’t be as likely to put their jobs in jeopardy by ripping off the house.”
Generally speaking, restaurant groups that tie their manager bonuses directly to "inventory variance" do not have inventory or revenue losses from their bar. Conversely, many bars that do not track inventory variances and include management in the accountability of shrinkage lose 15-30% of their inventory and sales. In this article, I will show you exactly how structuring a restaurant bonus plan effectively will eliminate bar losses and provide you with a bar manager bonus plan template to get you started.
After opening in 2003, the bar was struggling financially. It was obvious to managing partner, Ronnye Farmer that there were irregularities between the amount of product purchased and the return.
With no effective tracking system in place, Farmer found the Bevinco Bar Inventory system provided by Sculpture Hospitality.
Read more to see how the Bevinco solution was able to quickly save this bar.
By 2012, Tim Huels was at a turning point. He’d spent 11 years working his way up from intern to area manager at Enterprise Rent-A-Car in northwest Arkansas, but, he says, “I always said that when I turned 30 I would reevaluate my situation and if I was able to take a risk, I would.” So after his 30th birthday, he found a risk he was willing to take: buying a franchise with Sculpture Hospitality, which helps bars and restaurants run more efficiently via its proprietary inventory-management system and sales and training programs.
Liquor control systems vary in techniques and methods but the ones that work best identify the differences between units used and units sold, otherwise known as variance.
Variance reports allow operators to identify where they are losing product and how they can make improvements. However, not every operator that uses variance reports is successful in eliminating losses to shrinkage.
In fact, there are many operators that have extremely sophisticated bar inventory control tools that still suffer unnecessary losses. The tools by themselves are clearly not the only answer.
A state sales tax audit can be a devastating process that could potentially bankrupt your bar business - even if you have honestly paid all your taxes. That's because the audit calculates tax owing on all the alcohol purchased including drinks you didn't even sell (ie: stolen and over-poured drinks).
Partially Reposted from http://farmhousechicago.com/
Recently a Farmhouse Tavern guest asked owner, TJ Callahan, what he did before he entered the restaurant business. His response was ‘Junior High.”
A career restaurant leader, TJ has done everything you can do in the business from being a fry cook and bartender, GM of a $7MM TGI Friday’s, F & B Director of a ski area to restructuring $200 MM restaurant companies.