A few weeks ago I wrote a column about the problems that occur when a computer system fails in the middle of a dinner rush. I received numerous comments since then regarding both the reasons some systems have been failing, and also a few other points to remember to tell the staff in the computer failure system meeting.
One owner wrote to tell me his system went down when he delayed paying is bill for three months. It seems he had few options and the system vendor was the last guy on the list to get paid. The inconvenience it caused was astronomical and cost him more than he realized. His credit cards had to processed by hand, his funds transfer took three days longer than usual, and his checks were bouncing all over town. The service fees had been raised to $35.00 per check and the tally on those fees almost would have covered the system software agreement fee.
The lesson: Pay the software company!
Erin form Must Have Menus reminded me that one of the most important tips to cover with your waiters is to make sure they calculate and add in the tip. In the world of computers that is all processed without problems. However, in the hand-calculated world it seldom gets put into the equation. Worse yet, how much is the sales tax in your area?
Make sure the staff knows the amount and the sales tax rate. You also had better make sure they know how to calculate the amount.
Finally, Erin’s company, Must Have Menus, seem to do a pretty good job with menu templates. They also have a table tent program and that is one of the great marketing tools of any restaurant. You don’t have to put the tent in the middle of the table — you can add it to the check presenter folder and offer a bounce back, a complimentary appetizer, or whatever your marketing mind comes up with.
It’s a great service. Check it out.
Don’t forget your pre shift meeting and buy someone, a nice customer, a complimentary drink tonight.
Have a wonderful weekend.