Valuable Strategies to Help you Discover and Deter Restaurant Theft
According to the US Chamber of Commerce, 75% of all employees will steal from their employer at least once. Even more concerning to our specific industry is that The National Restaurant Association estimates that employee theft accounts for about 75% of a restaurant’s inventory losses – between 5-7% of gross revenue per year. This means that a restaurant making $2 million per year may be losing $100,000 to $140,000 to their employees’ pockets.
In its inaugural year, the Top Women in Foodservice Technology Awards sought to honor outstanding women from both restaurants and technology suppliers. These women are recognized for their reimagining of restaurant processes and operations, as well as their demonstration of excellence in leadership, inventiveness and skill.
The Lifetime Achievement Award was presented to two particularly exceptional women in the field - Pat Darling of Ctuit Software, and Karen Bird of Buffalo Wild Wings. This award is presented in recognition of a lifetime (no less than 15 years) of service and accomplishments in the foodservice technology industry. These accomplishments cover the individual’s overall impact on the technology industry, as well as their specific talents in encouraging colleagues and industry peers, their enthusiasm, their mentorship, and their commitment. Demonstrations of the new applications of technology are also considered.
With more than 20 years of progressively responsible managerial experience in operations, customer service, and restaurant management, Pat joined Ctuit in 2006 to lead the Client Services Department. After 8 years of providing the best service in the industry, she took on the role of Product Manager in 2014. A year later, Pat became Ctuit’s Vice President of Operations, where she continues to use her in-depth knowledge of the Ctuit platform, experience in the restaurant industry, and passion for excellence in both service and production to work collaboratively with customers, delivering solutions that are both valuable and practical.
Pat noted, “I am proud that I get to use my education and restaurant operations experience to leverage technology that fills a void in an industry that I love. And I get to pass that passion on to others by leading a continuously growing team that provides unparalleled customer service. Technology is great but there is no substitute for the human touch.” She added, “I really love what I do every day, to win an award for it is pretty surreal.”
Client Spotlight: Fresh Brothers - A Slice of Success
“Through the forecasting module, we are seeing a reduction in our labor cost because we are scheduling much more accurately. When we are scheduling more accurately, we are saving money.”
- Adam Goldberg, Founder and CEO, Fresh Brothers
Fresh Brothers, even though vastly successful, needed additional business analytics and information from their POS system to assist them with their projected growth. They were also in search for a way to streamline their overall accounting systems, as well as a means to provide their management team with the necessary reporting tools to excel in each of their positions. With those needs in mind, they came to Ctuit in 2015.
“Ctuit ties together all of our stores in numerous different reporting packages,” says Adam Goldberg. Instead of looking at each store individually, and then trying to combine and analyze the data manually, Ctuit reports on all stores both individually and as an entire company. “Ctuit doesn’t report just sales, but sales vs labor, labor by position, comp sales over previous periods, over previous years. These are tools that the POS system was unable to package for us in a consolidated reporting package, but these strategic and tactical decisions are now easily attainable for us by Ctuit.”
Ctuit’s reporting packages now provide Fresh Brothers the ability to look at company data from many different aspects.
Ctuit and Fresh Brothers have been working hand in hand to accomplish the chains’ projected growth. “I don’t know how we would be running our company without Ctuit right now,” stated Goldberg. “The company went years without a consolidated system and relied just on the POS. Once we put Ctuit in place, the information seemed to be endless. We are constantly finding new reports in the system that benefit the overall productivity of our business.” By transitioning from their past system to Ctuit, Fresh Brothers has saved “100’s of hours per month” by compiling data in spreadsheets that are now available in Ctuit with the click of a button.
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Client Spotlight: Pieology Reduces Overall Labor Costs by 8%
“With the ability to consolidate all of our data in one cloud-based location that can be viewed anywhere, we are able to better understand and therefore control operations as we grow.”
- Richard Long, Director of IT at Pieology
The biggest business challenge that Pieology faced was not having a single view of sales and labor for their fast-growing business. With a mix of 25% corporate owned and 75% franchisee owned stores there were multiple POS systems that did not speak to each other.
Ctuit’s RADAR Restaurant Management Solution was a perfect fit to get all of this fast-growing company’s data all into one place. Having visibility for all of the stores in one central location that can be accessed online from anywhere has been invaluable. “With no enterprise level reporting, it was nearly impossible to view important information on sales, labor, and product mixes from a high level” said Richard Long, Director of IT at Pieology. “With the ability to consolidate all of our data in one cloud-based location that can be viewed anywhere, we are able to better understand and therefore control operations as we grow.”
Labor: The labor management module gave managers the necessary tools to greatly reduce the hours upon hours that were previously spending manually creating schedules in spreadsheets. The custom reports also provided the insight, consistency and visibility to shave 8% off overall labor costs.
On The Fly™ : Having real time data delivered to their mobile devices, has really increased flexibility and productivity for the area coaches who work large, geographically dispersed regions. Having crucial data readily available from anywhere allows informed decisions to be made quickly and confidently.
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“Integrating these two powerful solutions gives operators the business intelligence tools they need to improve operations and increase revenue, making them more competitive and better able to focus on their guests,” said Art Julian, CEO of Custom Business Solutions.
“CBS and Ctuit both have a longstanding, multi-decade history of working seamlessly towards our mutual clients’ success. With CBS’ development of NorthStar, Ctuit immediately saw the benefit of integrating it with its Radar platform,” Robert D’Ambrosia, Chief Executive Officer
We Are Listening
Each month, we receive many feature requests from our clients. We take every request into consideration and work hard to accommodate your specific needs. Here are some feature requests we have implemented this past quarter.
THE PROBLEM: In the Accounts Payable module, there is support to add images to invoices and invoice batches. There was no way to search for invoices or batches that have images attached to them, however.
THE SOLUTION: We added a new filter for Invoices when a user selects Advanced Find and opens the Find Invoices screen. There is now a new option for "Has Image:" The options available are Batch Invoices Only | Invoice Images Only | Any Image | No Image.
THE PROBLEM: When creating schedules in Advanced Labor Scheduling, there was no way to create an open "House Shift" that can be offered up to anyone.
THE SOLUTION: On the Builder page, we created the ability to add unassigned, or "House" shifts that can be offered to anyone. The ability of employees to pick up these shifts hinges on the customizable setting, "Do not make unassigned shifts available for pickup when posted." These shift can be added by selecting Add Shift on the Builder page, select the job, then select Location or All and leave the employee name blank. Available employees will then be allowed to pick up these shifts.
THE PROBLEM: In the Manager Log module, there were a number of options to create individual entries, such as Tasks, but there was no way to create anything like a checklist of items.
THE SOLUTION: We added Checklists to the Manager Log to support multi-step Tasks that can be tracked for completion. Three associated Setup pages have been added to the Manager Log under the Setup menu item: Checklist Groups, Checklist Items, and Checklist Setup. These pages allow you to set up and customize Checklist Groups and Checklist Items. A user first creates Checklist Groups like “evening clean-up” or “wedding party”, then goes on to assign creates Checklist Items to these Groups – things like “scrub the oven”, “mop the floors”, “put up the banners”, etc. Once that is done, Checklist Groups can be assigned to any combination of locations or location groups. These Groups can then be set to recur as daily tasks, or they can be activated and deactivated as appropriate.
THE PROBLEM: In Ctuit Schedules, while there has been support for time off requests, there is no support for employees that "want to work" and pick up shifts.
THE SOLUTION: We added the ability for employees to add a "Want to Work" request in the newly named Availability page. This is denoted in the system by a heart icon next to the employee information on the specific days and shifts requested. These requests do not require a manager's approval, and will show in the Ctuit Schedules application and in RADAR for managers who are working on scheduling, as well as for employees who are looking to offer up their shifts.
THE PROBLEM: In On The Fly version 3.2, support for Manager Log Checklists was recently added, but there was no way to know if entries were being saved or edited.
THE SOLUTION: We added notifications that show whether an item is saved, or if there is an issue saving. On success, a green checkmark will appear then fade after a second. If the save fails, a red Retry icon will appear and not fade away, this will also be selectable so the user can retry the request.
THE PROBLEM: In Ctuit Schedules, when looking at Others Working, the Coworkers popup had no method to see who was not working.
THE SOLUTION: On the Manage Shifts page, if a user clicks on the "Show Others Working" button, a popup will open where the right-hand tab will show employees who are not working – the “Available” tab. The entry will also be highlighted with a heart icon if an employee has entered applicable "Want to Work" entries. For an employee to show on this list, they will need to have a Ctuit Schedules account.
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