Ctuit Software's Restaurant Management Blog

What the Heck is Business Intelligence? What is it and What Does it Mean for your Operation?

Restaurant Technology, Restaurant Management

Jan 20

Well, according to dictionary.com, Business Intelligence is defined as:

Noun:  the process of gathering information about a business or industry matter; a broad range of applications and technologies for gathering, storing, analyzing, and...

Read More

5 Ways to Streamline Your Inventory and Save Time

Cost of Goods Sold, Inventory

Jan 10

There’s a balance between speed and accuracy when taking inventory. With the limited amount of time between close of business and opening the next day, coming up with the most efficient way to take inventory will maximize your results. Here are...

Read More

Minimum Wage Increases for 2017

Labor Compliance, Minimum Wage

Jan 04

Due to the federal minimum wage remaining at $7.25 since 2009, many states, cities, and counties have increased the minimum wage on their own, letting their voters decide via local ballot. Through this method, 29 states will have a minimum wage...

Read More

How to Respond to Negative Online Reviews

Restaurant Management, Customer Reviews

Dec 28

Social media is everywhere.  An increasing number of diners are using apps like Yelp and TripAdvisor to decide where to go for breakfast, lunch and dinner each day.  In fact, according to a 2016 BrightLocal Local Consumer Reviews Survey, 84% of...

Read More

Employee Meals: What System Works Best for You?

Restaurant Management, Server Performance, Employee Meals

Dec 20

Employees in the restaurant industry do not typically have the normal nine to five work day. Instead, they typically work through the peak breakfast, lunch and dinner hours. Not only that – restaurant employees are constantly on their feet,...

Read More

Thinking of Expanding your Business? Here's Our Road Map to Help

Starting a Restaurant, Restaurant Management, Business Expansion

Dec 15

Once your first location is profitable and running smoothly, you might begin to consider expanding your business into a second (or even third, fourth or fifth) location.  It is often assumed that additional locations will open and operate exactly...

Read More

Managing the face of your Restaurant: Host Staff

Restaurant Management

Dec 09

One feature almost every dine-in restaurant has in common is a host staff to greet and seat customers as they enter. Other than the signage on the outside, your host staff is the face of your restaurant; this is where the first impressions of...

Read More

Slow Seasons: How to Take Advantage of The Down Time

Restaurant Management

Dec 01

The Holiday season is upon us! As consumers are considerately more active during the holidays, this can have an adverse effect on the restaurant industry. While some restaurants experience heavy traffic during this time, others receive a...

Read More

Building a Healthier Society: 3 Benefits to Nutrition Labeling

Restaurant Management, Nutrition

Nov 18

Over the last 5 years, health and nutrition has skyrocketed as an ever-growing, ever-welcome trend in the U.S. More than ever, sugar fee, sodium free, fat free, and gluten free are all widely sought after items in grocery markets. As consumers are...

Read More

6 Steps to Streamline Your Restaurant Accounting

Restaurant Management, Accounting

Nov 07

If you have a growing restaurant business, you will at some point hit the dreaded crossroads where the accounting is taking up way too much of your time. If you find yourself spending too much time behind a computer instead of out with your...

Read More

Secret Ingredients to Boost Your Restaurant's Customer Loyalty

Guest Satisfaction, Restaurant Management, Customer Loyalty

Nov 04

The time has finally come. The days of staying in for a home-cooked meal – of spending Saturdays browsing the local farmer’s markets and Sunday mornings at the grocery stores – are becoming obsolete. In an article published by Bloomberg Markets,...

Read More

Restaurant Accounting 101

Restaurant Management, Accounting

Oct 28

Everyone who has ever tried your food raves about what an amazing cook you are. You pride yourself on making the most delectable meals using only the finest ingredients. With lots of encouragement, you decide to turn your talent into a business...

Read More

4 Best Practices to Maintain your Restaurant’s Compliance with US Labor Laws and Regulations

Restaurant Management, Labor Compliance

Oct 18

Just as you would trust your health with a doctor, the government trusts restaurant owners with labor integrity. Did you know, in a recent article released by Restaurant Business Online, 95% of Restaurants in Austin, Texas, that were audited were...

Read More

Three Ways to Reduce Restaurant Food Costs

Cost of Goods Sold, Restaurant Management

Sep 14

The cost of the food and beverage your restaurant sells is referred to as your Cost of Goods Sold (COGS) or food expense. It is one of the few variable costs in the restaurant business. With the profit margin in this industry being so low, it is...

Read More

Are spreadsheets enough for COGS tracking?

Cost of Goods Sold, Restaurant Technology, Restaurant Management

Sep 08

Restaurants use spreadsheets for at least some function of cost of goods control. Spreadsheets can be utilized in areas ranging from purchasing to inventory to recipe costing. At some point, it may be time for a more advanced solution.

Read More

Leverage Restaurant Technology Without Diminishing the Guest Experience

Restaurant Technology, Restaurant Management

Aug 30

We often hear how technology is destroying human interaction. But in the restaurant business the very opposite may be true. Did you know that there are great technologies out there that will actually free up your time so that you can spend more...

Read More

Managing Millennials

Restaurant Management

Aug 25

While Baby Boomers are still the largest active generation in the workforce, Millennials are hitting the workforce in stride. Especially in the restaurant business. As the workforce changes, it is becoming more and more important for...

Read More

The New Kid on the Block

Restaurant Management

Aug 17

The restaurant business tends to be a tight knit group. After all it is most likely the love of being around a high-energy, fast-paced environment that leads certain personalities down this career path in the first place. But what happens when...

Read More

Simplify Your Business with Mobile Technology

Restaurant Technology, Mobile Devices, Restaurant Management

Aug 03

Restaurant managers have one of the toughest jobs out there. They are expected to manage food costs, inventory, sales, employees, and more all while still ensuring the highest food quality and customer service. But how can one person be expected...

Read More

Save Money with a Waste Audit

Restaurant Management, Sustainability, Food Waste

Jul 28

Have you ever looked in your restaurant’s dumpster? Not just a peek while holding your breath to see if it’s full, but a good, hard, pungent look all the way through? If not, you should.

Read More

5 Easy Steps to Controlling Your Restaurant's Cost of Goods Sold

Cost of Goods Sold, Restaurant Management

Jul 19

Calculating your restaurant’s cost of goods sold can be as easy as these five simple steps:

Read More

5 Ways to Reduce Information Overload When Setting up A Cost of Goods Sold System

Cost of Goods Sold, Restaurant Management

Jul 11

In this age of information, there is an unlimited amount of available data. Setting up a Cost of Goods Sold (COGS) system, can be both a blessing and a curse. With COGS being one of the largest expenses in the restaurant, tracking costs is of the...

Read More

Social Engineering: Hacking the Weakest Link

Restaurant Management

Jul 06

Hackers. Security breaches. Stolen data. Malware. All this high-tech piracy is the makings of hot headlines in the news and of Hollywood blockbusters. But for all its glory, the biggest security breaches do not lay in some genius coder who can...

Read More

5 Ways to Reduce Restaurant Energy Usage (And Cost!)

Restaurant Management, Sustainability

Jun 29

Reducing energy use not only benefits the environment by saving natural resources and cutting pollution, it also saves you money and increases your bottom line.

Read More

Pricing Out Your Menu

Restaurant Management, Menu Pricing

Jun 21

You know that you need competitive prices to get customers in the door and to keep them coming back. You’ve scoped out your local competition and know what each offers and their pricing. The problem is that you can’t seem to turn a profit on a...

Read More

Shed the Spreadsheets

Restaurant Technology, Restaurant Management

Jun 17

Managing restaurant groups through spreadsheets is one of the most widely used tools to organize data. This past week I shared the screens of restaurant operators who are absolute gurus in their craft of copy/paste, transpose, formulate and chain to...

Read More

The ROI on Restaurant Communication through Technology

Restaurant Technology, Mobile Devices, Restaurant Management

Jun 16

Technology has made it so that we can communicate more quickly and easily than ever before. Emailing, text messaging, and social media happen in real time, allowing immediate responses and engagement. Gain the most return on investment for your...

Read More

FDA Calorie Count Requirement Date Is Almost Here. Are You Ready?

Restaurant Technology, Restaurant Management, Nutrition

Jun 07

On December 31, 2016*  all retail food establishments with 20 or more locations doing business under the same name will be required to publicly post the calorie information of standard menu items.  In addition to posting the calorie information...

Read More

Restaurant Tips: Staying in the Black While Going Green

Restaurant Management, Sustainability

Jun 02

In an industry where costs are high and margins are low, the idea of “Going Green” seems like an unrealistic objective. Here are some simple low or no cost solutions that to implement immediately to stay in the black while going green.

Read More

Woah, TMI

POS Systems, Restaurant Management

May 31

You are most likely part of the management team because you have strong leadership and problem-solving skills and you have demonstrated your decision-making abilities. If, however, you are not using your restaurant’s analytics to your advantage, now...

Read More

Get in There Champ! Creating Competition to Boost Revenue

Staff Training, Restaurant Management, Server Performance

May 26

I spend my weeks talking to restaurant owners and their teams about the challenges they face in their operations. This past week I found myself deeply enmeshed in many conversations about how to motivate servers and guest facing team members to...

Read More

Labor Scheduling (Part Two): The Human Factor in Scheduling

Restaurant Management, Labor Scheduling

May 23

“I LOVE creating the employee schedule!” said No Manager Ever. But it still has to be done. While it may seem like a daunting task in which no one is ever fully satisfied, remember that creating the schedule can be your chance to boost employee...

Read More

Waste Not. Want Not.

Cost of Goods Sold, Restaurant Management, Food Waste

May 17

I spend the majority of my days talking with restaurant owners and their teams about the challenges they face in their operations. As most weeks go; I had a lot of conversations about managing food cost and narrowing the gap between Actual and...

Read More

Labor Scheduling (Part One): The Labor in Labor Scheduling

Restaurant Management, Labor Scheduling

May 16

Creating a schedule is about more than just covering shifts. Good scheduling processes can positively affect your customers, employees, and revenue. While having adequate staff on hand to accommodate your guests is your first priority, keeping...

Read More

Event Coordinator: The Original Doomsday Prepper

Restaurant Management

May 04

One of the most rewarding things about being an event coordinator is seeing an engaging conference, a successful promotional party, or an enchanting wedding come to life under your direction. These are often once-in-a-lifetime (wedding) or high...

Read More

Restaurant Data Automation

Restaurant Technology, POS Systems

Apr 26

For over 16 years, Ctuit has worked with various technology systems to consolidate, format, and map restaurant data in order to automate processes and drive profitable business decisions. We have worked with many other restaurant technology...

Read More

5 Key Steps to Controlling Your Restaurant's Cost of Goods Sold Infographic

Cost of Goods Sold, Restaurant Management

Apr 22

Calculating your restaurant’s cost of goods sold can be as easy as these five simple steps with this straightforward infographic.

Read More

Choosing the Level of POS That Is Right for Your Restaurant

Starting a Restaurant, Restaurant Technology, POS Systems

Oct 23

When shopping for a POS System, it is important to first consider your business needs. Choose a POS based on what you need for operations as well as what you need for back office analysis. For example, if you are a hot dog vendor, pmix analysis...

Read More

Restaurant POS Systems

Starting a Restaurant, Restaurant Technology, POS Systems

Sep 29

What are POS systems?

Fundamentally, a Point of Sale system (commonly referred to as a POS system) is a data collection technology tool. A Point of Sale is a computerized cash register that provides controls and analytics that a standard cash...

Read More

7 Skills of Effective Restaurant Managers

Staff Training, Restaurant Management

Sep 11

Everyone who has worked in a restaurant has a story about a terrible manager and also about a manger that they loved. Recognizing the managers that employees want to work for can reduce turnover and increase job satisfaction which, in turn, leads...

Read More

7 Restaurant Labor Scheduling Best Practices

Restaurant Management, Labor Scheduling

Jun 09

Labor Scheduling Best Practices for Restaurants

In an industry where costs are high and margins low, it is important to make the most of the resources that you have available to control your costs. Labor is expensive but how can you lower labor...

Read More

Save Money by Calculating the True Cost of Transactions

Restaurant Management

Dec 22

True Cost: How Calculating It Impacts Your Bottom Line

Would you rather save $100 or make $500? Before you answer that question, let’s take a look at what each of these means to your restaurant’s bottom line.

Read More

Restaurant Gift Cards: Why You Should Be Selling Them

Gift Cards, Restaurant Management

Dec 16

Restaurant Gift Cards Are Pure Gold

Gift certificates and cards are a time-honored tradition. Need a last-minute holiday or special occasion present? Gift card. Have a kid in college, or a young adult just starting out on their own? Gift card....

Read More

What’s Your Company’s Information Sharing Style?

Restaurant Management

Dec 01

In any food service company with multiple locations, the topic of information sharing inevitably arises. What’s your style? Do you utilize a fully transparent system, with facts and figures readily available to all restaurant managers? Or does...

Read More

Are Your Low Expectations Holding Your Employees Back?

Staff Training, Restaurant Management

Nov 24

Most people would agree that our expectations color our views, if not our performance. But can your expectations influence your employees’ job performance? Maybe it already does.

Read More

Think Twice Before Sending That Work-Related Text!

Mobile Devices, Restaurant Management

Nov 07

Americans love their technology. About 67% of adults are on some form of social media. And in a 2011 study by the Pew Research Internet Project, fully 73% of mobile users also texted. The most heavily text-centric segment of the population are...

Read More

Food Business Forecasting: Three Strategies to Successful Planning

Forecasting, Restaurant Management

Jul 22

Fail to plan and you plan to fail, especially with food business forecasting.

These dire words, adapted from Benjamin Franklin himself, highlight a truism in the restaurant business. Without plans, your road to success will look more like a...

Read More

The Sharing Surcharge

Guest Satisfaction, Restaurant Management

Jul 09

Like a bad call at a baseball game, there’s nothing that’s as polarizing as a split-item fee. And nothing seems to delineate the difference between restaurant folks and their guests than the idea of a sharing surcharge on a single plate of food.

Read More

How Managers Can Build Good Work Habits … Without Micromanaging

Staff Training, Restaurant Management

Jul 01

Good management is a delicate balance. You have to supervise your crew to lead them, but you can’t dictate their every action. Fortunately, there are ways you can harness the power of habit to train your employees, without becoming the sort of...

Read More

Mastering the Art of Menu Recommendations

Staff Training, Restaurant Management, Server Performance

Jun 17

Make menu recommendations like talking with a friend

There is a right and a wrong way to do just about anything, including the art of menu recommendations. Make recommendations the right way and they can become excellent chances to build trust...

Read More

Want More Efficient Service? Keep Heads Up!

Staff Training, Restaurant Management, Server Performance

Jun 10

Never underestimate the importance of your waitstaff. Good food may be a dining room essential, but without servers, it would never leave the kitchen. That’s why so much of Ctuit’s RADAR software is concerned with service metrics. Few things will...

Read More

Happiest Hour: How to Make Off-Peak Times Into a Win-Win Situation

Happy Hour, Restaurant Management

Jun 04

Happy Hour Tips

Happy Hour and its cousin, Late Nights, may have fallen out of the limelight for a time, but they’re enjoying a triumphant and sustained return now. According to a survey cited on Restaurant.org, up to 33% of all adult beverages...

Read More

Looking to Improve Your Restaurant? See It Through Your Customers’ Eyes

Restaurant Management

May 27

Tips for How To Improve Your Restaurant

Once something becomes familiar, we tend to lose our eye for its details. We’re surprised to find that the trim on our house needs painting or that our favorite black shirt is fading simply because we see...

Read More

When Real-Time Data Helps – And When It Doesn’t

Real Time Data, Restaurant Management

May 19

Real-Time Data for Restaurants

There’s an allure to real-time data. It’s the shiny new concept of modern computing:  I can know what’s going on right now, all the time, immediately!  It combines our innate curiosity with the thrill of instant...

Read More

The Hidden Cost of Unmonitored Table Turning

Fraud Management, Restaurant Management, Table Turns, Server Performance

May 12

The Hidden Cost of Unmonitored Table Turning in Restaurants

You may think that the one time you don’t have to monitor tables is when they’re empty; once the tables are turned – that time period between one group leaving and the next sitting down...

Read More

Will the New Net Neutrality Laws Have an Impact on Your Restaurant Business?

Restaurant Technology

May 05

Net Neutrality and Your Restaurant

You’ve probably heard the term net neutrality quite a bit, thanks to recent and proposed rulings involving the FCC and SEC. As a restaurant owner, why should you care about changes to the workings of the...

Read More

What the End of Windows XP Means for Your Restaurant

Restaurant Technology, Restaurant Management

Apr 15

The End of Windows XP

It’s the end of an era.  Windows XP, a long-lived operating system beloved for its stability and familiar user interface, has officially reached the end of its life cycle.  After 12 years, Microsoft ended product support for...

Read More

Using a Bring Your Own Mobile Devices Policy? Proceed With Caution

Mobile Devices, Restaurant Management

Apr 08

Mobile Devices and Your Restaurant

There are certain things about the restaurant business that will never change. Food will always need to be prepared. Customers will always have their favorite booth or table. Chefs will always be experimenting...

Read More

Starting a New Restaurant? Three Reasons to Be Careful What You Name It

Starting a Restaurant

Apr 04

Naming a New Restaurant and How To Do It Right

There’s an excitement in starting a new restaurant. What will you serve? What kind of ambience will your restaurant have?  Who will be your target audience – families, the young and hip, gourmets and...

Read More

Why General Managers Should Work During Slower Shifts, Part Two: The People

Guest Satisfaction, Staff Training, Restaurant Management

Mar 23

In the first post of our two-part series, we discussed the financial advantages of having your general manager work off-peak shifts. These include keeping an eye out for money-saving practices and keeping employees busy – or even sending them...

Read More

Why General Managers Should Work During Slower Shifts, Part One: The Profit

Fraud Management, Restaurant Management

Mar 12

It is an established practice for restaurants to have their general managers work the busiest shifts. As salaried employees – and often as the staff members with the greatest experience and seniority – it makes sense for them to work when the dining...

Read More

How the Pareto Principle Simplifies Menu Pricing

Cost of Goods Sold, Restaurant Management, Menu Pricing

Mar 05

Menu Pricing and How the Pareto Principle Simplifies It

Restaurants are businesses.  Like any other business, they depend on a delicate three-way balance between cost, quality, and price.  Unfortunately, pricing out menu items is a tedious task, one...

Read More

What is a Guest?

Restaurant Management, Guest Counts

Sep 21

What Does a Restaurant Guest Mean to the Restaurant Business Owner?

Those of us in the restaurant business have probably asked ourselves this question, but not in the same context as our non-hospitality counterparts. If you asked this question to a...

Read More

Managing Self Service Beverages

Fraud Management, Restaurant Management

Aug 28

Increasing Sales and Reducing Server Theft

Self-service beverages can be a great opportunity for incremental upselling. Typically they are high margin and low cost items, which makes them ideal for upselling. At the same time, because they are...

Read More