Video: 5 restaurant cash handling best practices you can’t afford to miss

Theft beyond the register: 5 restaurant cash handling best practices

Many restaurants suffer cash loss after the money leaves the drawer. Do you have cash handling processes in place to stop it?

Give your team a cash handling plan to help keep them honest and prevent loss in your restaurants.

In this month’s OpsWise, you’ll learn 5 tips to improve cash handling and deposit procedures, including:

  • Verifying deposits
  • Protecting cash outside the register
  • Transporting restaurant deposits
  • Conducting store audits for accountability

Want to tell your team? Download our PDF handout for a one-page summary you can share with your managers and employees for future reference.



Hi, I’m Claire from Delaget, with more loss prevention tips. The cash register is not the only place your staff can mishandle cash. In fact, some of the greatest opportunities for theft can happen AFTER the cash is taken from the drawer. Here are 5 cash handling best practices that will keep your team honest and prevent cash loss at the management level:

#1 – Verify, and then verify again

Verification is key when it comes to safeguarding your restaurant’s cash. Managers must verify the cashiers’ deposits separately to easily identify any variances. Also, funds in the safe must be verified prior to open and after every shift change. The incoming manager-in-charge should verify the money in the safe with the outgoing manager-in-charge. And remember – make sure only one manager is permitted in the safe each shift.

Following this best practice will relieve the outgoing manager-in-charge of the responsibility when the incoming manager verifies and accepts responsibility for the funds. If cash turns up missing, only one person can be held responsible.

#2 – Protect cash when preparing the deposit

Ensure the removal of funds from the time-lock safe is on camera, witnessed by more than one person, or both. This keeps managers honest.

Also, make sure that team members never leave money unattended. The manager-in-charge should prepare the bank deposit in their office or another isolated area.

#3 – Have a plan for transporting money (and if the smart safe fails)

If your company’s policy is to make cash deposits daily, make sure the manager does it by 11 AM so the funds are credited on the next business day. This reduces the risk of the deposit being in the store another full day.

On Sundays and holidays, remove the money out of the store and deliver it to the bank’s night depository. If for some reason the manager cannot transport the money to the bank, they should contact their supervisor immediately.

#4 – Make sure the deposit matches

For smart safe users, have cashiers deposit their own drawer’s money in the safe. Then, using the safe reports, the manager-in-charge should verify that the cashier’s deposit matches the reports from your back-of-the-house system.

For restaurants that don’t use smart safes, while your managers are at the bank, have them validate that the amount on the deposit slip and the expected amount match, and ask them to double-check that the totals are correct.

Back at the restaurant, the manager should match the validated deposit against the expected deposit. If the totals don’t match, they should alert their supervisor.

If your company uses a deposit reconciliation process like Delaget BOOKS’ cash verification tool, managers should monitor the daily variance notifications so that they can quickly address issues if needed.

And finally, #5 – Hold unannounced audits and hold your team accountable

Build surprise safe audits into your routine every period or month to hold your team accountable. During the audits, make sure you coach your team on any gaps in system execution that you find.

There you have it! 5 cash handling best practices that will help you and your team effectively prevent loss and theft. 


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