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Ultimate Guide To Restaurant Management in 2022



Restaurant businesses are one of the most competitive industries. And, with COVID-19 disrupting the entire world’s economy, restaurants are worst affected.


With proper lockdown and vaccination, the virus spread is now under control, allowing consumers to step out of their houses and enjoy good food in their favourite restaurants.


This blog post is made for restaurant owners & managers to help step into new areas of management that actually fetch results and ditch the age-old tactics that don't yield anything.


Managing a restaurant is definitely not an easy job. We know it too. If done without any plan or a clear-cut process in hand, it can be a daunting task.


To make your life easier as a restaurant manager, we have gathered some best tips for effective restaurant management. Without any further ado, let’s get into the real business.



What is Restaurant management:


Restaurant management refers to the responsibilities of handling day-to-day tasks like customer relationships, overall business operation, marketing, staff & inventory management, and accounting. In short, a restaurant manager is supposed to take care of daily activities and also long-term growth.


Here are 9 Effective ways for Restaurant management:












1. Staff management:


Hire & train new employees including waiters, waitresses, receptionist, and kitchen staff. It involves interviewing candidates to assess their attitude, communication skills, and culture fit.


If they’re selected and ready to be onboarded, conduct a proper background verification check and previous employer references.


It is quite a daunting task to replace an existing one. Think of the cost involved in recruiting, training, and eventually adapting them to the work. Appreciate your employees, motivate and reward them whenever necessary, to retain the best talents.



Schedule shifts for staff members and prevent employee burnout. Consider mental wellness programs and employee wellbeing.


Few established restaurant brands have also incorporated Yoga, Meditation classes as an initiative for employee wellness programs.


Check their body temperatures everyday morning to assess their health conditions. Normal body temperatures are 37 degrees Celsius and 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit.


If your employees have temperatures above this, it is advisable to let them stay in their homes to have some rest and also to prevent staff members from being infected.


Follow proper hygiene measures like sanitizing hands or washing hands with a block of soap or gel and make it a standard practice.


Have a friendly work environment and conduct regular meetings whenever necessary.


Appreciate an employee in front of everyone and have a one-on-one meeting whenever things are not going well.


Incentivize your staff members whenever they exceed the regular norms as a token of appreciation.


Take care of your employees and your employees will take care of your business like their own”.



2. Accounting & Finance:


As a restaurant manager, it is very important to stay on top of accounts. This involves monitoring the cash flow of your restaurant business, keeping track of your restaurant’s expenses & income.


It is essential to have a decent knowledge of using tools like Quickbooks & Microsoft Excel for accounting purposes.



Every transaction in your restaurant has to be tracked separately. Using a pen & paper can make you go crazy at the end of the month.


To avoid these, you can use end-to-end restaurant management software or a restaurant POS to handle these tasks that consume a lot of your time.


A few major tasks under accounting & handling finances are checking the cash register day in and day out to make sure everything is on point, paying your suppliers, utility bills, rent, technology charges, and other expenses on time.


Have a proper compensation benefits structure and credit the salary for your restaurant employees on payday.


Few restaurants pay on a daily basis, few on a weekly basis, and others on a monthly basis. Choose whatever format is best for you.


Take complete ownership of the restaurant’s budget and incorporate cost control methods.



3. Manage online orders


Although online food ordering platforms are a thing that’s been in the past, after COVID-19, people got to explore its fullest potential.


People were forced to stay in their homes to avoid physical contact with others, which resulted in huge demand for online food ordering.


Reputable food ordering & delivery services like UberEats, Doordash, Zomato, Swiggy were mostly preferred by users.


Food aggregators charge unfair commissions, indulge in offering deep discounts to attract customers, which can affect your profit margin.


To avoid this, we would suggest you opt-in for an online food ordering system that allows your customers to order directly from your online restaurant store.



This will ensure you own your online restaurant store and unchain yourself from third-party food aggregators.


Platforms like Flipdish, Thrive now, Dotpe & Gloria Food are helping restaurant businesses to set up their own online food ordering system.


Allow your customers to order directly from your own online store with an updated menu. Your regular/loyal customers will love it.


To attract new customers to your restaurant, you can use the online ordering URL across


  1. Restaurant Website

  2. Google My Business

  3. Facebook & Instagram posts

  4. Facebook group posts

  5. Facebook page CTA button

  6. Instagram bio link

  7. SMS

  8. Whatsapp

  9. And many more online channels


The options are endless, you just have to be there where your target audience exists.


For example, update your restaurant menu in the catalog on Whatsapp for Business account and send targeted messages to your customer contacts using the Whatsapp Broadcast option.


This will allow you to send a message to 256 contacts in no time.


The best part of Whatsapp is that it comes with integrated payments. Meaning, they can directly pay you without leaving the app.


Here is a fantastic case study on how Accra Restaurant Uses WhatsApp Marketing to Keep 6,000 Customers Coming Back



4. Customer relationship


Anyone who runs a business is aware of this term - “Customer is the King”, “Customer is always right”

Although we don’t completely agree with it, it’s still partially true as they are the deciders of your brand’s reputation.


Customer relationships can make or break your business. It’s that simple. To run your business effectively, provide what your customer wants, and don’t be shy to exceed their expectations. It can be rewarding too.


As a restaurant manager, handling customers should be your primary objective.


On a random day, you may come across customers that are completely satisfied with your service and also a few customers that are disgruntled and wants to speak to you


 No, we aren’t talking about an angry Karen ;) 

Customer relationships don't start & end within your restaurant. It goes beyond that.


Request your customers for their birthday & other special occasion dates if possible during checkout.


Import them into your customer record or a restaurant management software and send out special offers during their birthday month or wedding anniversary.


Everyone loves their birthdays and likes to be treated well.


Focus on multiple touchpoints to your customers and provide a delightful customer experience.


Use SMS, Email, Whatsapp, social media messages to communicate with them.


By this, we don’t mean you have to stalk them across every channel. After all, the last thing that you want to be named is a selfish business that is always after money.


Instead, add value during every conversation.


Go beyond just being transactional. Be informative, send food quotes, your cooking videos, and suggest personalized menus based on their order history.



5. Restaurant marketing


Restaurant marketing means sending out strong & clear messages to your potential and existing customers about your restaurant business.


To achieve this in the digital world, you need to leverage every online channel where your target customers spend time.


Some of the best channels that have worked really well for many restaurants are SMS, Email, Google Search, Whatsapp, Social media channels like Facebook, Instagram, etc.


Facebook & Instagram are an absolute goldmine for businesses. People have started to explore new things like never before. Getting your brand in front of them is the toughest task.


Achieve best results in restaurant marketing by following these tried & tested tips:


  1. Upload high-quality images of your dishes

  2. Add relevant captions or quotes to your posts

  3. Tag restaurant influencers & food bloggers to your post

  4. Post Instagram reels with song clips or real sounds.

  5. Use IGTV feature to post videos that are more than 1 minute to 60 minutes long

  6. Go with vertical videos. They are the new black. Youtube shorts, TikTok, Instagram reels encourage this format.

  7. Experiment with new thumbnails for your videos

  8. Run Q&A sessions for your followers

  9. Conduct a contest and reward a few winners.

  10. Like & Comment on other business posts for more visibility

  11. Use relevant hashtags for maximum reach. Ideally 5 to 10 hashtags per post


Send out regular messages and hyper-personalized offers for weekdays, weekends, and special occasions.



Import your contacts to your restaurant software, segment your customers based on their purchase behavior, and send out targeted messages for the best results.


To attract new clients for your restaurant business, you can try out Facebook ads, Instagram ads and create a new website to accept online orders or table reservations.


Recommended reading: 34 Best Restaurant Marketing Ideas & Strategies That Works



6. Increasing Restaurant revenue:


Teach the art of upselling & cross-selling to your restaurant staff, waiter & waitresses. Cross-selling is adding extras to the order. More like suggesting a dessert at the end of the meal.


Upselling means upgrading the existing ones. An example would be adding extra cheese to a burger or suggesting an ice cream add-on for a strawberry shake.


Make recurring or loyal customers by offering membership programs, loyalty points, reward points, and gift vouchers that can be redeemed.


Offering an unmatchable customer experience would turn one-time visitors into recurring customers.


Provide exclusive offers to selected customers to make them feel special. For example, invite them for special events, wine tasting, celebrity visits, etc.


Increase new revenue by stepping into online channels where your target audience exists.


For example, your audience would use social media on a daily basis. Start creating content on a regular basis and promote your brand and offerings.


Offer an online ordering system that can enable your customers to order food at their ease.


Also, an interesting fact is that online ordering increases average sale value because customers spend a lot of time looking through the menu and choosing their own dishes without being stuck in between waiters and the menu card.


There are usually 4 types of audience for your restaurant business


1. Unaware: They are not aware of your brand.

2. Brand aware: As the name suggests, they just know your business exists.

3. One-time customers: Haven’t returned after their first visit.

4. Brand loyalists: Recurring customers and they suggest your restaurant to their friends & families out of their own interest.


Turn your ordinary customers into your brand advocates by offering them unforgettable experiences whenever possible.




7. Getting feedback from customers


Of all the functions in the restaurant business, getting feedback from customers is the most crucial one.


As a restaurant manager, it’s your duty to make sure that guests are enjoying their food and having a good time.


After the meal, ask for their feedback on the quality of food, taste, ambiance, and overall service. Setup a few questionnaires in your restaurant software and keep them as short & simple as possible


Here are a few feedback questionnaires for your restaurant business


1. Rate our food from 1 to 5


2. Rate our service & ambience from 1 to 5


3. Would you recommend us to your friend?


No business can get every review as a positive one. In an ideal world, it is imperative that you would bump into angry customers who aren’t satisfied with the service.


They may go ahead and give a 1 star rating for your restaurant in Google My Business and post negative comments about your brand on social channels.


This 1 star review would become a red flag for potential customers and eventually harm your business bottom line.


To avoid this conflict, you need to wear your expert communicator hat. If possible, talk to them directly in the restaurant to solve their issue.


If they have given an online negative review, try talking to them in private and take the conversation offline.


Apologize to them for the inconvenience caused and make sure it wouldn’t happen if it’s a mistake from your side.


Help them understand that it’s a rare situation where you weren’t providing the best service.


And, please do not respond like this 😂


Restaurant negative review response
Funny negative review response

Bring them back to your restaurant offering complimentary dishes or some special discounts tailored for them and help change their opinion of your restaurant business.


If they’re satisfied with the food & service, you are more likely to turn the negative review into a 5 star. Voila!


To avoid all these scenarios, use a restaurant management system with a negative feedback mechanism or an online restaurant review management tool to get alerts whenever a customer gives negative feedback.


When they provide positive feedback, the system would automatically takes them to your Google My Business page, where you are most likely to get 5 stars.


Get all these positive reviews as much as you can and its benefits can be huge.


Importance of more positive restaurant reviews & ratings in google my business page
Importance of restaurant reviews & ratings



8. Manage day-to-day tasks and operations.


Maintain daily records in restaurant software or your preferred medium.


Have a safe working environment and make sure sanitation & hygiene measures are followed by all staff members.


Take care of customers' feedback, complaints, and suggestions and try to improve your operating procedures.


Conduct a Daily Standup Meeting with staff members in the morning to work on goals to achieve.


Follow opening & closing procedures ensuring everything’s alright. Here is a checklist of items to be followed during the restaurant’s opening & closing:



1. Checking the cash registry 2. Clean kitchen, floor, and tables 3. Setting up the menu for the day by communicating with chefs 4. Assigning tasks for staff members 5. Resolving customer issues 6. Marketing the restaurant in social channels 7. Responding to positive & negative reviews or comments 8. Reporting to the owner, partners & board members





9. Inventory management:


Managing inventory is every restaurant manager’s nightmare. Running out of raw materials during a busy day is the last thing every manager wants to hear.


To avoid this, plan your day way ahead. Order your raw materials one day prior to the business day to ensure they are properly delivered.


Stick to one single restaurant supplier and develop supplier relationships to get discounts and other industry tips & tricks from them as they get to communicate with a lot of restaurant owners & managers on a daily basis.


Restaurant suppliers know what works and what doesn’t.


Raise purchase orders and use restaurant inventory software to handle all these tasks to keep track of your activities.


You can also run down inventory reports to analyze which products yield the best revenue by knowing recipe costs.




Conclusion:


To summarise the post, as a restaurant manager you will have to take complete control of day-to-day tasks and also plan for long-term business growth.


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