A sizable portion of F&B operating costs is tied up in the items you purchase. Your restaurant and food-service venues generate a lot of numbers, making it difficult to manage waste, spoilage, overstock and theft. For those new to market, and for those working hard to solve this complex challenge, deciding what to focus on first and knowing what the numbers mean doesn’t have to be perplexing.
Following some basic guidelines about where to focus your time, and what to expect can help you achieve food inventory management success. Today we provide some simple guidelines to help you get focused on what matters most, so you don’t have to toss out a single cent.
- Establish Routines. Set a regular frequency for your inventory count—weekly, monthly, yearly, and even at the close of every business day. The more often you take inventory, the easier it is to identify and correct problems.
- Set Inventory Par Levels. This is the minimum quantity of an item you need to have in inventory to make it to the next delivery. Cycle menus make it easier to establish accurate par levels.
- Train Your Team. Make sure team members understand inventory methods used and why it’s important. They should understand categories, purchase units, issue units, recipes and more. Impress upon all staff the importance of, and perhaps even incentive them to achieve well-managed inventory controls.
- Mind the Menu. Monitoring inventory brings focus to the opportunities of cross-utilization. If an item is regularly wasted or spoiled because it’s not used enough, devise ways to integrate it into other menu items. Cross-utilization also helps lower the total number of items in inventory.
- Focus on the Figures. Always refer to the inventory data when changing menus, with the aim of minimizing waste. Food service inventory management software is designed to make all aspects of the inventory process exponentially easier. Look for technology that’s compatible with existing systems to make it easier to monitor costs and other inventory trends.
How much money does your business toss into the trash each year? The right technology can solve this complex challenge and ensure you have the right ingredients to achieve food management success and maximize your dollars.