Hi! This is Claire from Delaget!
Controlling and monitoring inventory levels is a constant challenge for restaurant operators. If you don’t order enough product, the guest experience will suffer. And if you order too much, you’ll create waste, tie up your organization’s cash flow, and make it easier for employees to steal. Control your restaurants’ inventory levels; reduce inventory theft and loss; and improve profitability with these 10 action steps.
- Get sales forecasting right. Use store history, brand guidelines, and local and brand marketing calendars as a guide. A variance of 5-7% is optimal for an ordering cycle of 3 to 5 days.
- Prioritize ordering. Dedicate time to take a complete inventory and use your location’s build to or PAR ordering system to determine how much product you need to order.
- Stay organized. Keep shelves neat, clean, and organized and remember to rotate the stock as often as possible.
- Verify orders. Trust your delivery drivers, but verify what you’re receiving is exactly what you’re paying for.
- Take accurate inventory. Inventory a handful of critical items, such as proteins, every day, and take a full inventory every week. Also, don’t allow inventory “bounce-backs.” Accurate inventory counts are crucial in maintaining inventory control and preventing loss.
- Use equal measures. To avoid confusion and error, make sure your managers and inventory takers are counting by the same unit of measure. If needed, use a scale to get correct measurements.
- Conduct inventory audits. Conduct inventory audits of food items every morning to check the previous day’s counts. Ensure accurate counts are reflected in your back-of-house system.
- Set goals. Set weekly and period goals for food inventory levels. This can be done as a percentage of sales, as inventory turns, or as days in inventory. Whichever method you choose, assign goals to each location and monitor the performance over time. Additionally, set weekly and period targets for paper and beverage cost. A best practice is 2.5% of sales for paper and 3.5 to 4% for beverage.
- Monitor metrics. Monitor POS metrics to keep voids, deletions, cancels, refunds, and all discounts and promos less than your brand or company standards.
- Make it Easy. Use software like Delaget Stats to monitor inventory levels for multiple stores – and Delaget Guard to track your cashier and manager’s POS activity.
There you have it! Ten ways you can gain better control of your restaurant’s inventory levels. For additional restaurant resources that can help you run a more profitable, efficient operation, go to Delaget.com and click on “Resources.”