One of the most difficult parts of running a restaurant is keeping your inventory in line with sales. Ensuring that line staff always add waste items to inventory can be challenging, but controlling your inventory is critical to reducing overall food costs. Requiring a full inventory on a regular basis takes time away from serving customers, but can be one of the best things that your staff can do to control waste and improve profits as an accurate inventory can stop you from over-ordering some items and having too few of others. See how exceptional restaurant inventory management in NYC is the best thing you can do to keep your overall costs in line.

Menu Planning

Food is easily one of the largest operating expenses involved in running a restaurant, but it is also one of the most difficult to track and manage. The wholesale cost of food continues to rise, while customers push back against what they consider excessive prices for their favorite dishes. Monitoring overall food cost variance takes skill and time — both of which can be problematic to find on a regular basis in food service. Keeping track of waste requires diligence and a solid plan of attack. Many restaurant managers measure not individual items as waste, but use a waste scale instead with goals that help keep waste under control.

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Employee Meals

Another big area for potential loss is employee meals. Employees work hard for the restaurant, and it may allow them to feel entitled to grabbing a little snack from time to time. While this is fine with some managers, others look for ways to limit or discourage this practice. Even if employee meals are allowed, they can be limited and tracked by requiring each staff member to ring up their meal as if it’s a purchase. Even refilling drinks from a soft drink machine tends to add up to significant losses for the business over time. It’s especially important to frequently audit employee meal records, as studies show that discount codes are often used fraudulently to offer meals to friends and family.

Reconcile Inventory Records

Metrics and data are an important part of inventory management, and the biggest benefits come from high-dollar items such as produce and proteins which should be inventoried most often. Low-cost items can have a longer inventory cycle, but keeping a close handle on expensive food supplies will have the biggest positive impact on your bottom line. Require multiple employees to inventory different items, whichhelps keep people from becoming complacent in their counts.