Competition in the market has become fiercer than ever, so it is of upmost importance to operators that they ensure their customer service is of the highest quality. Delivering exceptional customer service is more than just making sure that food and drinks get out on time. Exceptional customer service is about going the extra mile and being ultra sensitive to guest needs. This becomes particularly challenging as your organization grows to include multiple venues, and it becomes nearly impossible for the owners to keep tabs on how their staffs are performing on a day-to-day basis with each guest.
To help you kick off 2017, we’ve gathered up our 5 most popular (and useful) blog posts over the past year. Read on to get up to speed on essential industry insights that will help guide your restaurant or bar for the New Year!
Owning and managing a bar can blur the lines between night and day, making you feel like you live at work. From late nights closing the place to early mornings spent counting inventory and preparing for the evening ahead, long hours can begin to take their toll. The good news is that there are specific steps you can take to avoid the black hole of bar management that threatens to consume all your time. By working smarter, you can not only enjoy more freedom, but also focus your attention at work on the things that are most important to you.
Growing nightclubs and bars with complex product needs require managers with above-average skills in the areas of organization, communication and judgement. When a busy venue has multiple bookings, and each booking has special needs that must be met, a liquor manager who is tuned into the requirements of the business is absolutely vital. Keeping track of a busy venue’s liquor inventory requirements can be extremely challenging.
Two of the biggest challenges in the hospitality industry are the management of people and ensuring employees are doing the tasks they have been assigned with high-quality results. Bar and nightclub operations require a large amount of people, each with different personalities, backgrounds and work habits. It can be incredibly difficult to manage a large amount of people, particularly as a business is growing rapidly and recruiting new people.
One of the key principles of successful bar management is reducing shrinkage. Inventory sitting on the shelves represents money that has been invested as is now waiting to be turned into a profit. If some of that inventory goes missing, that means that the bar's profit margin has just taken a direct hit. Fortunately, there are some effective bar management strategies that you can put into practice in order to reduce shrinkage and maximize your inventory.
As a bar owner or manager, the key to turning a profit is turning over your inventory. While you need to have a certain amount of inventory on hand to make sure that you can serve customers their favorite drink and keep the spirits flowing, too much sitting inventory will cost you. There is no point in having all your assets tied up in inventory that has been sitting on your shelves for over a month. All those dusty bottles represent money that you could be investing back into your bar. Have you yet to master the balancing inventory costs? Welcome to Purchasing 101 for Your Bar.
Violence can absolutely destroy a bar or nightclub operation. When a bar is mentioned in the news due to a violent or deadly altercation, its demise is usually not far behind. Any time an atmosphere of fear is associated with a bar’s name, it becomes very difficult to attract quality guests and build a sustainable business. While it is impossible to eliminate all violence, it is entirely possible to minimize it by taking as many preventative steps as possible.
Employees can be a tremendous source for new customers, referrals and customer retention. However, not every employee invests their time into promoting the business they work for. What separates employees that simply show up to work, from those whom invest their time and energy into building relationships that ultimately result in more customers? The employees that bring down the most customers to their bar are motivated by more than money. They are fired up, proud and passionate about the bar they work at. This attitude does not happen by accident. Employees that have a positive attitude towards the bar they work at become that way as a result of the work environment the owners create. Keeping staff morale high is a strategy that is no different than a recipe for baking a cake.
Tough economic times have operators scrambling for ways to cut back on costs. With overall demand down and costs rising for some products like spirits and food, finding ways to reduce expenditures is no longer an option for operators, it’s a must. While good times always follow bad times, there is no way to tell how long economic dry spells will last. Weathering a financial storm always starts with a good, hard look at expenses, and then streamlining where possible.
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.