What is restaurant inventory management software ?
One of the biggest challenges for restaurant owners is tracking and managing their inventory. This includes items like food, drinks, supplies, and kitchen equipment. Tracking inventory manually is time-consuming and can be a huge headache for restaurant owners who are running low on stock. A restaurant inventory management software will help streamline your process by automatically updating inventories across all locations, saving time and money.
Best Restaurant Inventory Management Software- A Buyer's Guide
What are restaurant inventory management softwares?
The act of analyzing your food supply, making the most of what you have, and using this information to inform your next purchases is known as restaurant inventory management.
Restaurant inventory management systems are crucial tools for reducing food waste and costs while increasing revenues.
Here are a few terms that are crucial in restaurant inventory management-
Inventory- The amount of product you have on hand is referred to as inventory. You can refer to this in terms of cash worth or physical amount, but whichever approach you select, make sure you stick to it.
Depletion- This relates to how much of a product is utilized in a certain amount of time (daily, weekly, or monthly). This can be calculated using data from your POS system's sales report. This makes it a sales tracking app.
Usage- It is the amount of inventory divided by the rate of depletion during a set period. For example, if you have 14 gallons of milk and plan to drink two gallons each day, that's a week's worth of consumption (7 days).
Best practices to make most of your restaurant inventory software
Here are some best practices to make the most of your restaurant inventory management software-
Restaurants often have a hard time managing their inventory
Learn more about restaurant inventory management software with Zip Inventory. It will help you keep track of what’s in stock and what needs to be reordered
Online employee scheduling software that makes shift planning effortless.
Try it free for 14 days.
1. Get right point-of-sale software
To begin, install a fully functional restaurant POS system at your location. It saves you money on hiring additional staff for restaurant inventory management and even helps you with day-to-day operations.
The system assists you in counting the opening and closing stock, tracking inventory and stock utilization, and providing real-time updates on current inventory on hand during a shift change.
2. Train your staff
When you bring in automation, it's evident that training is a part of the process. Whether or not your employees are tech-savvy, they must learn how to use the POS system. Interact with them about ways to reduce waste, such as using excellent restaurant inventory management, keeping track of everything that comes in and goes out, and so on.
3. Limit data access
You can limit your staff's access to information that isn't relevant to their work at your restaurant to protect your restaurant's inventory from unauthorized use.
For example, you can create multiple user types such as owners, managers, chefs, waiters, and cashiers. Give each of them their own set of credentials and access controls. The POS system records their activities so you can keep an eye on inventory and prevent theft and waste.
Managing inventory is a full-time job, and it's not always easy
Zip Inventory will tell you about the best restaurant inventory management software options that will help you in your business
Online employee scheduling software that makes shift planning effortless.
Try it free for 14 days.
4. Use the FIFO method
Request that your workers line up the restaurant inventory according to expiration dates or in-time at your kitchen, and then dispense it according to the FIFO (First In, First Out) guideline. Even the ready-to-serve food items that have been prepared for the day must be attended to.
Meanwhile, make sure the dish isn't overcooked or undercooked, that it tastes well, and that it stays fresh until it's served. Make a strict plan for consuming the perishable supplies. Keep track of your weekly or monthly orders and adjust your storage limit as needed. Update the storage quantity in your restaurant software if raw materials aren't being used as expected.
Essentially, ensuring that the food you provide is of the best quality will encourage your guests to return.
5. Set storage limit
In food inventory management, keeping a lid on your storage in a point-of-sale system is critical (particularly for perishable commodities). Set maximum and minimum storage levels for your restaurant's inventory to keep it fresh and tasty.
While you concentrate on other parts of restaurant management, this ensures that you never run out of stock. Keeping your store, kitchen, serving floor, and warehouse clean and neat is also part of storage. Before stocking up, schedule regular sanitation once a week.
You can also ask your store manager to keep the temperature consistent based on the needs of your food stock, such as vegetables, fruits, meat, ingredients, and spices. This eliminates wastage, which is one of the best inventory and stock management practices.
6. Regularly check inventory in portions
It's no longer simple to do a thorough restaurant inventory check at all hours of the day and night. It's time-consuming, aggravating, and prone to mistakes. You may make a mistake while serving dine-in meals or taking care of delivery requests.
You might use a cycle count as a routine to avoid similar situations. The cycle count will ensure that the inventory in the division is scrutinized daily while also ensuring that the continued movement and use of things are not disrupted.
Because of the cycle count, your employees won't have to stay late at the end of the day. Once you've completed it, add it to the existing stock on hand and the goods consumed to get a clear picture of your restaurant's inventory usage.
7. Keep the menu's flavor consistent
Your F&B establishment is undoubtedly well-known for its delectable fare. The most difficult task for you in this situation is to keep the original flavor of your food.
In addition, you should focus on recipe management by customizing the recipe in your restaurant POS system. As a result, you'll be able to easily segment your dishes. Additionally, it assists your chef in maintaining the quality of your menu while also keeping track of the inventory and stock required to make the goods purchased at your establishment.
8. Track and approve inventory requests
You may have noticed a few unusual entries in your restaurant inventory app consumption report. On that account, you can set up a process that sends you a request when one of your employees wants to consume stock, and you can approve it.
You'll get a request if your chef wants to use a specific list of ingredients, for example. He won't be able to use it until you accept it. In essence, nothing escapes your notice, and any inventory or stock mismanagement is eliminated.
Similarly, purchase orders will not be sent to vendors unless you or your store manager authorize them. However, you must ensure that everything is received promptly. If you discover any flaws in the order, report it to your vendor.
9. Calculate inventory rates based on overheads
Apart from the expense of purchasing inventory and stock, there are several overhead expenditures associated with restaurant inventory management. Because your purchase quantity fluctuates over time, you'll need to adjust your restaurant's item rates correspondingly.
The menu item rates should be set so that a normal sale covers all of your production, administrative, and overhead costs.
10. Stock up on the menu items
You may find yourself creating seasonal menus at your restaurant regularly. As a result, some dishes may only be accessible at certain times of the year, while others may be served all year.
To deal with such situations, you'll need to keep an eye on your shifting menu items and be quick to pile up goods and stock appropriately.
These are just a few of the top inventory management methods for restaurants that come to mind. And, as you can see, they can all be done properly with the help of a good restaurant POS software that gives you total inventory control.
Zipinventory, a restaurant inventory management software, takes care of not just your inventory, but also everything from meal ordering to billing, simplifying the running of your restaurant. It can be your best inventory ordering app.
How does restaurant inventory management software work?
This is how the systems work in general. To begin, bar codes or RFIDs inform scanners of the things that customers are purchasing. The scanners reads the bar codes and relay the information to the software, which then sends it to the computers. The bar code digits are then interpreted by the software, which matches them to the type of item they represent. This lets the merchant keep track of sales and inventory at the checkout counter or with a hand-held scanner, keeping the store up to date on what's selling.
Specialized software like Zip Inventory maintains track of how much merchandise is purchased and how much is left on the shelves and in the warehouse, providing management with a real-time view of what's going on. The software also evaluates the data and gives re-ordering strategy recommendations. They're sometimes set up to automatically order at a given point. However, it's crucial to remember that a good system allows for human decision-making. The technologies provide useful data to aid decision-making, but managers must make the final decision.
When management makes a re-order decision, the system uses electronic data interchange to transmit its needs for additional merchandise to a vendor. The data is saved in a computer's memory bank and can be accessed by managers on both ends of the phone line.
Key benefits of restaurant inventory management software
Keeping track of everything is one of the most difficult aspects of running a restaurant. You must ensure that there is enough food, that all building codes are followed, and that your kitchen crew is properly trained. What happens if something doesn't go as planned? That can be a real annoyance. The good news is that inventory management software can make inventory management simple.
Some of the benefits of using restaurant inventory management software are as follows-
1. Maintains food stock
Inventory management includes determining how much food inventory you should keep on hand at all times. If you have too much food, you risk having 'dead stock,' which is inventory that can no longer be sold because it is out of date. If you don't have enough, you'll run out of stock, fail to meet customer demands, and lose out on potential sales.
By using inventory management software, you can ensure that your restaurant inventory does not fall below a critical level.
2. Saves money on storage
When you have too much goods, you may end up spending too much money on storage space. Inventory storage is a variable cost because it is determined by how much space your initial inventory takes up at any particular time. You wind up spending more for inventory storage when you have more merchandise on hand than you need. Inventory management can assist you in reallocating such funds.
3. Controls food costing
Restaurants can increase their revenues by lowering food prices. With all of the data at your fingertips that good inventory management gives, you can change your menu planning, expenses, and have a greater understanding of how each order affects your company's overall profitability.
4. Detecting and preventing theft
Theft and spillage are two of the most serious hazards in any restaurant kitchen. Inventory management can assist with this by capturing any discrepancies in stock after an audit operation for food expenses and inventory available at the end of a period has been completed. Employees are held accountable in this manner, and waste is avoided.
Best restaurant inventory management softwares in 2022
Restaurant inventory management is currently one of the most difficult jobs available. Using restaurant inventory management software is the best approach to avoid costly mistakes and save time and money. These software packages can assist you in managing food inventories, managing personnel, and maintaining good client relations. With so many choices, you should do your study before picking which program to buy. We've put up a list of the top seven best inventory management software for 2022 here.
1. Toast POS
Toast is a well-known Android point-of-sale system designed primarily for restaurants. Toast performs well in a variety of casual dining contexts, from fast-casual to sit-down, due to hardware alternatives like tableside ordering tablets, self-ordering kiosks, and a customer-facing checkout screen. Toast also boasts strong online ordering (app), takeout, and delivery features, making it a popular choice for businesses with a high volume of takeout orders.
Toast is an integrated restaurant inventory management system that syncs and updates your inventory when meals and beverages are sold. Actionable inventory reports, such as inventory value reports, COGS and variance reports, and waste tracking reports, are provided by the system. Toast also has a menu engineering feature to help you make your inventory more profitable, as well as a shelf layout feature that maps your inventory count to your kitchen setup. Toast works with a variety of inventory tools for restaurants, including BevSpot, BrewLogix, Craftable, Marketman, and others, to enhance your inventory management capabilities even further.
2. Upserve POS
Upserve is a cloud-based restaurant POS and inventory management solution that is quite similar to Toast in many ways. Upserve provides modern POS capabilities including tableside ordering tablets and online ordering, and it's available on Android and iOS. Upserve also features inventory management built-in, as well as connectors with third-party restaurant inventory software including ORCA, BeerSAVER, Craftable, BevSpot, MarketMan, Compeat, and others.
Automatic inventory deductions as menu items are sold, automatic replenishments when you receive inventory, and one-click purchase when inventories are low are just a few of Upserve's inventory capabilities. Vendor management and recipe costing are also included in the system. The in-app mobile barcode inventory system or scanner is a standout inventory feature of this mobile-friendly POS. You may use the Upserve Inventory app on your iPhone or Android to scan inventory with this functionality. Upserve makes receiving inventory as simple as scanning receipts using your phone's camera.
TouchBistro is a popular iPad POS system for restaurants, as well as one of the most cost-effective restaurant inventory management solutions. TouchBistro features a strong inventory management system and third-party inventory software connectors, while being on the more basic side in many ways.
You can manually enter each ingredient, together with its unit of measure, wholesale cost, retail price, and associated recipe, into TouchBistro to generate and manage your restaurant inventory. The technology then keeps track of ingredients when menu items are sold and sends out in-service low-stock alerts to workers. Basic inventory reports are also available. That's all there is to it. As I already stated, it's all about the basics. However, in other establishments, basic may be sufficient. If you need more, you may easily link your chosen inventory software.
4. Lightspeed Restaurant POS
In the realm of iPad POS, Lightspeed is becoming a force to be reckoned with. Lightspeed recently purchased fellow iPad POS businesses Upserve and ShopKeep, in addition to having specialized POS solutions for restaurants, retail, eCommerce, and golf courses. Lightspeed Restaurant, in particular, has developed a high-quality, low-cost restaurant inventory management system and point-of-sale system with raw ingredient tracking.
Lightspeed Restaurant succeeds when it comes to third-party restaurant food inventory software integrations, despite its modest built-in inventory capabilities. Customers of Lightspeed also get a complimentary edition of BevSpot, which allows restaurants to track variation and product loss by item. Lightspeed Restaurant works with Craftable, Growzer, MarketMan, ORCA, RapidBar, Restaurant365, RESTOCK, BeerSAVER, Whistle, WISK, and other food inventory applications in addition to BevSpot.
5. Square for Restaurants
For quick-service and mobile food enterprises, like food trucks, Square POS is an excellent basic, free POS. Square for Restaurants was launched in 2018, with increased restaurant functionality such as restaurant inventory management. There is even a free plan for Square for Restaurants, which is available on iPad and Square Register.
Shopventory is a sophisticated inventory management system for restaurants that works in both retail and restaurant settings. It's the only food inventory software on this list that isn't a point-of-sale system, but that's fine because it's built to work in tandem with your POS. Shopventory, in particular, works with Square, Clover, PayPal Here, and Shopify, transforming any of these basic POS systems into a sophisticated restaurant inventory solution. Shopventory will also integrate with QuickBooks to sync your daily restaurant sales and values.
There are so many features on Shopventory that it would be difficult to list them all. Here are a few highlights- Its key capabilities include PO and vendor administration, modifier inventory tracking, mobile barcode scanning, expiration date notifications, par-level email alerts, and lot COGS management.
Zip Inventory - inventory management software
Zip Inventory is a small business inventory management software for restaurants that work in both retail and restaurant settings. It provides an easy-to-use dashboard for tracking inventory, managing sales, and managing employees. Zip Inventory is a must-have program for all small business owners, thanks to its time-saving features and straightforward navigation. Small business owners can increase revenues by streamlining operations and lowering costs using Zip Inventory. Zip Inventory gives the tools you need to stay competitive, whether you're a one-person firm or have workers.
Zipinventory Features are efficient inventory management, variable count frequencies, keeping track of what's sold, correcting errors, identifying waste reduction opportunities, easy inventory count, anytime access to inventory reports, and improved and standardized recipes to share with your staff.