In any modern restaurant business, you’ll need the tools to improve the efficiency of your business and boost the customer experience. One of the essential tools that will do this for you is a great point of sale (POS) system.
A POS system does more than just allow you to process sales. It’s more than a glorified cash register. Your POS system should allow you to manage the whole restaurant, grow your business, and encourage loyalty.
With so much choice out there in terms of common POS features, if you have chosen to buy a new POS system for restaurants, then you’ll be wondering where to start.
In this article, we’ll take a look at POS systems for restaurants and provide you with the questions you need to ask before making your choice.
1. Is the POS System for Restaurants?
Not all point of sale systems are the same. You’ll need to ensure that you’re getting a POS system that is designed around your specific industry.
While you may be able to tailor some of the functions of a retail POS system to fit your business model, it won’t be ideal. You’ll need a POS system that allows for the following:
- Adding and removing ingredients from meals and drink orders
- Selling combos and multi-buy promotions
- Table management
- Sending orders to the kitchen
- The ability to split the bill
Without many of these functions, you’ll be making unnecessary work for yourself and your employees.
2. What Features Does It Have?
As previously mentioned, the POS system is more than just a cash register; it is the hub of your business. A good, feature-laden POS system should provide you with reports and data that allow you to manage both your labor and your stock ordering.
Many POS systems will have inventory management systems that allow you to take stock of everything that you have in your restaurant. From here, you can automatically generate replenishment orders, process waste, and create forecasts based on previous sales.
Cash control functions should allow you to easily reconcile your takings and keep a tally on the money that you’ve sent to the bank.
The customer experience can be enhanced through the addition of loyalty functions. The front end of the system should provide your front-of-house team with everything that they need to streamline their tasks.
3. How User Friendly Is It?
In the busy world of the hospitality industry, the last thing that you want is a POS system that is so complex that it slows you down. Everything about the POS system that you choose for your restaurant needs to be simple and easy-to-use.
When you hire new employees, you’ll often need them to hit the ground running, so the front end needs to be particularly intuitive.
When it comes to the back end of the POS, your stock and sales reports need to be adaptable to suit the needs of your business.
4. How Does the POS System Manage Inventory?
Having a great POS system and knowing how to get the best from it will mean that you should never run out of stock of your key menu items.
Your POS system should be able to give you current on-hand data about the stock that you’re holding. It should be able to give you data about your best sellers. The best systems should let you know before a certain product runs out of stock.
A cloud-based system should give you all of the data about your stock holding in real-time. This means that there shouldn’t be any delays or out-of-date information. Your decisions will be made based on accurate information.
5. Can the POS Go Mobile?
Can the POS system that you’re looking at be used from mobile devices such as tablets? Instead of wasting your time on paper order slips, mobile POS systems let you put the order straight through to the kitchen without leaving the customer’s table.
This allows you to streamline the service that your customers get. There’s less work for your waiting staff as the orders get added straight onto the system, and a bill can be pulled up instantly.
6. Will the POS Allow My Business to Grow?
As your business grows, you’ll need your POS system to grow with it. This could mean adding additional POS terminals within your current location. It could also mean increasing the number of locations that you own and manage.
A POS system is a major long-term investment. Migrating to a new POS system takes a lot of time and effort. And if you outgrow your existing system, it can cause some major headaches.
Make sure that you’re thinking about the future of your business when it comes to selecting the right POS for your restaurant.
7. What Training and Support Are Provided?
Moving over to a new POS system is a major upheaval for any business. For management, the whole process needs to be carefully handled so that you still have access to your important historical sales data.
For your front-of-house teams, adapting to a new system can take time. There will be teething issues, and you’ll need to make sure that you have the support you need from your POS vendor during this process.
Find out what support they offer on an on-going basis, but also what training and onboarding they have in place initially.
Choosing the Right POS for Your Restaurant
When choosing a POS system for restaurants, you will need to factor all of the needs of your business. The functions should enhance the experience your customers enjoy in your restaurant while making your employee’s jobs easier.
Remember to think about the future and get a POS system that will allow you growth.
At Securis systems, our Heartland POS system provides streamlined efficiency in the front-of-house, kitchen, and in the management of your restaurant.
Get in touch to find out more about how we can help your business.