How to Decrease Restaurant Food Waste and Revenue Loss

How to Decrease Restaurant Food Waste and Revenue Loss

REVENUE LOSSThere are a number of ways to analyze and reduce food waste which equals revenue loss.

  1. Restaurant Prep Sheets
  2. Portion Control
  3. Before Consuming Food
  4. After Consuming Food

Restaurant Prep Sheets

There are restaurants that do not use prep PAR sheets.

What is a Par sheet?

A Par level is a minimum quantity of a given item that a business must keep on hand. When the actual quantity falls below the par level, a new order is placed. The purpose of a Par level is to prevent shortages while avoiding holding excess goods.

If your restaurant is not using a PAR sheet when prepping food, then how do you know how much to prep, are you relying on your gut feeling or are you winging it? Either way, you are under prepping or over-prepping.

Under Prepping

Under prepping will cause customer related issues because you may run out of a specific prepped item. Some of your guests may dine in your restaurant because they crave a specific menu item.

If you run out of that specific menu item your customers will be upset and may not return solely due to not providing what the customer wants. Remember the term word of mouth, if that guest leaves your restaurant unsatisfied they may tell their friends, family and co-workers about their visit, which may affect repeat business.


Over-prepping will create unnecessary waste and revenue loss. If you conduct inventories and you discover a high food cost percentage, then one of the reasons may be due to over-prepping.

The use of the prep PAR sheet will tighten the gap in reducing unnecessary food waste. You will need to collect several weeks of data in order to set PARS based on the previous usage in the weeks ahead.

Portion Control

There are certain food items that need to be portioned daily in order to be consistent in the amount of food that a guest will receive. Portioning food also will help keep revenue loss to a minimum.

Some foods that you can portion are:

  • French fries and Onion Rings
  • Pasta
  • Vegetables/fruits
  • Pre-made sauces
  • Shrimp, calamari, scallops and other various seafood

Invest in a digital scale, portion bags and microlite portion containers. This small investment will save you time and money. With the items pre-portioned the cooks will be able to prepare the entrees quicker and the amounts will be consistent which equals more profits.

Decide what items that you want your prep employees to portion and hold them accountable by checking the amounts and weights periodically through spot checks. You will reduce waste loss and revenue loss as long as you are portioning correctly and consistently.

Before Consuming Food

Restaurant food waste that occurred during the food preparation process such as, such as potato peel, roots from leafy vegetables or bones, improperly prepared food, liquids, expired foods and food accidentally spilled on the kitchen floor will create an unnecessary revenue loss.

After Consuming Food

Over-portioning food that a customer receives creates revenue loss. Some restaurants such as diners give a large portion of food to their customers thinking it will create repeat business; in reality, it creates revenue loss.

A great idea is to invest in smaller plates; this will help reduce the amount of food on the plate and in return a bigger profit margin. Think of it this way, larger portions mean two things:

  1. A customer does not finish the entire entree, so you throw away the excess, which equals revenue loss.
  2. A customer boxes up the leftovers, creating a second meal, which is not cost effective. You can price out your menu according to a set food cost percentage that will allow you to make a profit

Date Dots – First In, First Out (FIFO)

Date dots play a huge role in revenue loss. If you don’t use date dots during the prepping process, then how do you know the correct shelf life of any particular product?

Food Rotation

As your employees put away the deliveries they should rotate the new product behind the old product. If you do not follow this practice, then expired product will create an unnecessary revenue loss. Your managers, kitchen staff and servers should follow First in, First out (FIFO).

What could happen is:

  • You may expose your customers to foodborne illness. Food that is outdated and spoiled can get customers sick.
  • Serving spoiled food to customers is dangerous impacts your reputation.
  • If food is outdated and spoiled, then throw it away and record it on the waste sheet for tracking purposes.

The Waste Sheet

When employees discover outdated products they should inform the manager so they can determine if the product should be thrown away. Once you throw the product away, it needs to be recorded onto the waste sheet. Enter the date and product information onto the waste sheet, include the employee’s name that caused it to be thrown away, the reason it was thrown away, the manager’s name and the cost of the product.

The Purpose of the Waste Sheet

The main purpose of the waste sheet is for tracking reasons. There are several things that you can learn from the waste sheet: The reason why the product was thrown away; if you see a specific employee over and over again on the waste sheet it might be a training issue or an I don’t care issue. Maybe the food item was incorrectly prepared which indicates a kitchen training issue. This gives management a unique tool in reducing revenue loss by monitoring the employee that is responsible in wasting food and why it was wasted.

The manager should always tally the total dollars wasted for a specific period. Example, if your waste sheet is a weekly sheet, add up the entire dollar amounts on the sheet.

Restaurants percentage target goal for waste sheets: should be 10% of the restaurant revenue for that specific period. The 10% represents; food waste before it reaches the customer; spoiled foods and over-prepping and after it reaches the customers; food mistakes and comped foods.

Frequent Food and Drink Inventories

There are restaurants that conduct very little or no inventory. Not conducting an inventory opens your restaurant up to theft, food cost issues and more. If you know what the issues are, then you can correct them. Not doing an inventory is like leaving a window open in your car and not expecting rain to come in, or not thinking it could result in car theft.


Restaurant theft whether it’s food or money represents 4% of the restaurants total food cost for a specific period.

The theft comes in many forms:

  • Managers/ employees stealing product or money from the register
  • Servers altering credit card amounts, then pocketing the cash
  • Managers/servers voiding guest checks, then pocketing the cash
  • Managers/servers, applying unauthorized coupons to customer checks, then pocketing the cash
  • Managers/bookkeepers embezzling money from the restaurant
  • Money missing from the safe fund
  • Products missing from your food and drink inventories
  • Employees eating without paying for it
  • Vendors shorting the delivery

According to the latest statistics from the United States Chamber of Commerce, 75% of employees have stolen at least one item from their employer. The employee may have stolen a food item or did not pay for the extra item for that specific item. The employee may have eaten an unpaid food item. Either way, it’s still theft.

The person that steals from the restaurant, whether it is product or money is usually the person you trust most or the person that you would likely suspect.

Conducting Frequent Inventories

It’s best to conduct inventories biweekly or weekly, rather than monthly, why?

The longer you wait to do an inventory the more revenue you will lose. Stick to a shorter inventory, so you can catch inventory issues quicker, which will reduce the shrinkage dollar amount lost during that period.

How to Conduct Inventory

Train your employees to put the truck items away into its designated areas. Use product labels on all food and drink storage areas to simplify the process. If your rooms are organized your inventories will be more accurate.

Use only two employees when conducting the inventory counts. One employee will actually count the product and the second employee will record the counts onto to the inventory product count sheet. It is not recommended to use more than two employees during this process, the more employees involved in the process the chance of more errors.

Once you complete your inventory counts, then enter those figures into your main inventory worksheet, you may have a POS system where those figures can be entered into or you may have an excel spreadsheet that you can use. Once you have recorded those counts, then you should be able to view your alcohol or food cost percentage for that particular period.

Below is the national average for food and alcohol benchmarks:

Food Cost
  • Generally – 28% to 32% of total food sales
Alcoholic Beverage Costs
  • Liquor – 18% to 20% of liquor sales
  • Bar consumables – 4% to 5% of liquor sales
  • Bottled beer – 24% to 28% of bottled beer sales
  • Draft beer – 15% to 18% of draft beer sales
  • Wine – 35% to 45% of wine sales
Non-Alcoholic Beverage Costs
  • Soft drinks (post-mix) – 10% to 15% of soft drink sales
  • Regular coffee – 15% to 20% of regular coffee sales
  • Specialty coffee – 12% to 18% of specialty coffee sales
  • Iced tea – 5% to 10% of iced tea sales
Paper Cost
  • Full-service – 1% to 2% of total sales
  • Limited-service – 3% to 4% of total sales

If your inventory percentage is too high, there is always a reason why it is not in line.

  1. Always retain the hard copy of the original alcohol & food count sheets, file them accordingly. Double check the figures from the hard copy count sheet against the figures you entered into the inventory system, you may have manual key entry errors.
  2. If your inventory is severely off, then redo your inventory.
  3. Make sure you always post all your delivery invoices correctly into the system. Make sure you have received full credit from your purveyors. Use a food and alcohol return credit form. Record the date of delivery, product identification number, product name, product cost, driver’s name, manager’s name and why it was returned. Use the last column to check off when you have received a full credit from the purveyors. Use the Product Delivery Returned Form to note all the information noted above.

Never accept a high alcohol/food cost percentage. Investigate why the percentage is too high and react to it. If you do nothing, then expect massive revenue losses. If you can’t find why your alcohol/food inventory is too high, it may be:

  • Theft
  • Improperly trained employees

Over 70% of revenue losses are directly related to your employees, whether it is theft or improperly trained employees. Use alcohol/food perpetual inventories to tighten the gap to find out where and who may be responsible for the theft.

What is a Perpetual Inventory?

Count key items or easily stolen items before your staff arrives, early in the morning. After a particular shift leaves for the day or night recount those same items. Therefore, you will know exactly what is missing from the particular shift. Go into your POS system and generate an item usage report based on that time period. Both figures should match as long as there was no server or cook errors or theft.

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If those figures do not match, then review your waste sheet to determine if staff reported missing items on the sheet. If you find the items listed on the waste sheet, then ask yourself: When did the waste occur? Who was responsible? Why? Of course, a Food Waste sheet is worth the effort, if used properly and consistently.

Is there a particular cook or server listed on that waste sheet repeatedly creating errors? If so, retrain that employee, after you retrain that employee and the problem continues, then the documentation process should begin. If that particular employee still continues with that specific issue you may want to re-think is that employee a good fit for my restaurant or bar.

Restaurant Theft Prevention

Why do you need Restaurant Theft Prevention?

Many restaurant owners and management are completely oblivious to theft happening right under their noses on a daily basis in their restaurants. No business is immune to theft. Using common sense restaurant theft prevention will help you save money. Thieves often profit from cash paying customers.

Unfortunately, 70% of revenue loss comes from employees, possibly by theft, training or mistakes.

Did you know that 90% of restaurants fail in the first year, while %10 survive? Revenue loss, whether it is directly related to theft or not, will make a huge impact on your restaurant’s future.

Theft Comes In Many Forms

Restaurant Theft Prevention

Restaurant Inventory Percentages for Restaurant Theft Prevention

Typically, a profitable restaurant needs to maintain a food cost percentage 25% to 35%. The restaurant style and menu impact the range of the food-cost percentage. Generally, high-end restaurants will have a higher food cost percentage. The fast-food restaurant food cost averages 25% or lower. Food costs of 28% to 35% at sit-down restaurants. Again, this depends on the menu mix and the style of the restaurant.

Restaurant Prime Cost:

Most restaurants prime cost percentages need to be 60% to 65 %. Restaurant prime cost includes food revenue, labor cost, payroll taxes and employee benefits, including unemployment taxes and health insurance. If your restaurant prime cost is 65% or higher, then that should be a red flag for revenue loss.

Excessive Voided Guest Checks are a sign of Theft

Employees can void cash-paid guest checks from the system. Then the cash payment goes into the pocket of the person who voided the guest check. Generally, thieves will target guest that pays cash. This particular type of theft will also create a high food cost percentage.

Customer check voids are a manager’s function. Some employees may take advantage of the situation by asking for the manager’s swipe card. These employees will typically wait until the manager is locked into a position such as cooking in the kitchen. Some managers may give up their swipe card to key employees because they trust them. Never trust anyone with your swipe card. If an employee uses the swipe card to commit theft, then you, the manager, will be responsible mainly because your swipe card is attributed to you and no one else.

If you have a standard POS system, then you should be able to create a report that shows voided checks per server. Look for inconsistencies in the server void totals. Compare them to other server voids. This can be avoided if the managers are the only people the swipe card.

Watch for Excessive Use of Restaurant Coupons in Restaurant Theft Prevention

Restaurant coupons that are saved and applied to guest checks-AFTER the guest has left the restaurant. Servers or managers may apply coupons to guest checks, then pocket the cash.

Restaurant employees can clip out coupons from various sources such as newspapers or magazines. Customers may leave unused coupons on their table. The customers may even give the unused coupons to the server to give out to other customers who can use them.

Restaurant Theft Prevention-Coupons

There are several ways to detect and prevent coupon theft:

  1. Server check pad audits. Before any peak time period, tell each server to open up their server check pad so the manager can view the contents, look for loose coupons. If you discover loose coupons and they are not linked to any guest checks, then they should be destroyed by tearing them up and placing them in the trash can. Think about this, what purpose do these lose coupons serve?
  2. When a coupon is redeemed there should by two initials of them, the server and manager’s initial. The words VOID also should be written the guest check. The coupon should be stapled to the customers closing check.
  3. You should be able to track each server’s voids in your restaurants POS system. Look for inconsistencies and patterns. Compare each server bid amounts. At a glance, you should be able to pinpoint potential theft or errors.

Restaurant Theft Prevention and the use of the No Sale Button

This is an easy way to steal from the register. The guest gives the guest check to the person accepting payment, then that person opens the register using the no sale button. Once the drawer is open the employee will cash out the guest. If the guest requests a receipt, then the employee will print out a copy of the bill and give it to the guest. Of course, this will only work if the guest is paying cash.

NO “No Sale”

A good idea is to eliminate the no sale button from your register. The only way for anyone to access the register is the employee that is assigned to the register or the manager. Contact the company where you bought the system from and they should be able to disable the no sale button.

If you prefer not to disable the no sale button then you need to closely monitor the register by viewing reports that will generate how many times the no sale button was used and by whom. To decrease potential issues with the register, install cameras.

“The Big Three”

There are servers who will purposely not add certain foods and drinks to the guest check: Some servers believe if they fail to place all the items onto the guest check, then the guest will leave a bigger tip to that particular server. There are three groups of certain products that servers may forget to add to the guest check. These are known as “the big three.”

  • Soups
  • Salads
  • Sodas

Often these are server prepared items. It’s relatively easy to miss entering these items into the POS system, whether done intentionally or by accident. Either way, this created revenue loss and a high food cost percentage.

How to prevent this loss

To prevent or discover this type of issue the owner or the manager needs to perform a table audit. Print out a guest check and match up what’s on the slip to what’s on the table. Instead of accusing the employee of stealing, the owner or manager will open up that particular check on the POS system and place those missing items into the POS system and inform the server of what you did.

There is a high probability that the server forgot to place those items into the POS system because they are server prepared items. Maybe, the server will tell you that he/she does not have time to put those items into the POS system because it is time-consuming. Managers need to educate the staff to enter the drinks and foods into the POS system consistently.

What does this mean?

Let us suppose the server forgot to put the drinks on the guest check and the guest leaves without paying for those items. On that particular receipt, two drinks totalled at $4.00. Say you lost $4.00 a day for a full year, as a result, this is $1460.00 in revenue loss. That is a great deal of money, yet it was only one server mistake. I am quite sure that other employees are making similar mistakes, even though this is merely one item on your menu. Potentially, you might be out hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars in revenue loss that can be prevented.

Misuse of Credit Cards

This is another form of theft, and the customer is impacted. Here is how it works: the guest signs the credit card slip and the signed copy is given to the guest, but then after the guest departs the restaurant the employee edits the tip amount to a higher amount. Another way is the guest paid with a credit card and left a cash tip on the table and then the server writes in a tip on the credit card receipt.

The credit card that was altered can be difficult to detect. The server might have drawn a line through the old amount then creating a new tip amount. The server may have used an eraser to remove the old tip, this pattern should be noticeable and questioned. The customer may notice on their credit card statement that the tip was changed. The customer will call the restaurant to inform them that their credit card tip has been changed and that the customer want’s the difference credited back to them. Often the credit card company will get involved to help solve the matter.

Restaurant Theft Prevention to Avoid Credit Card Investigations and losses

Detect this sort of credit card theft, when you collect the servers ending cash and paperwork, including credit cards. Look for altered tip amounts, different pen colors or writing styles. If the manager suspects a server changing the tip on the guest check then the manager should conduct an investigation by reviewing other past credit cards for altered tip amounts. If the manager discovers other altered tip amounts then the credit card company needs to be informed. The credit card company will conduct their own investigation by contacting those affected by the altered tips on the guest checks. The police can be informed of the situation. Make sure you have proof because it is a bad practice to accuse an employee of wrongdoing without proof. Get the police and credit card company involved when it comes to theft.

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Theft and Abuse of Employee Meals

Some restaurants give their employees a discount on their meals 25% to 50% off the full amount. In today’s uncertain economy, every penny counts. Employees who do not pay for their food are stealing from your restaurant.

Here is an example:

John, the cook, decided not to pay for his meals. He cooks up a burger and fries and eats the meal while on the clock, concealing it from other employees and management. The cost for this meal is $7.49. John eats free meals 5 days a week. One week’s time, he ate $37.45. In a month he ate $149.80 of your profits. Over the year he ate $1797.60 or your profit. Those numbers are huge, but keep in mind that was only one employee.

Create an employee meal policy:

Employees should take their meal break before or after the peak meal periods. Management authorizes the meal break. The employee eats the meal in a designated area. The cooks prepare all employee meals. If employees cook their own meals, they may add extra unpaid items. This impacts inventory and food costs.

The manager enters the employee’s meal into the POS system and receives the payment. The manager and the employee will initial the slip. The employee needs to keep that receipt while eating the meal. Anytime a manager asks, the employee shows proof of purchase in the form of the receipt.

Restaurant Theft Prevention policy may be “No slip, no food.” The cook prepares food is prepared, only with a valid ticket. The only exception to this rule is if a manager verbally requests to recook a meal due to a guest complaint.

Restaurant Forms and Checklists

The use of restaurant forms, restaurant forms and checklists and restaurant spreadsheets dramatically increase your restaurant chances of survival. Management consistently and correctly uses the restaurant forms and checklists to impact the restaurant theft prevention policies.

There are many types of restaurant forms and checklist that will help organize your restaurant:

Go to: to view all restaurant forms and checklists.

Increase restaurant profit

Increase restaurant profit: What you can do to improve your bottom line

We have heard this many times, “Nothing is wrong with my restaurant. Everything is great! My customers are happy. I have good employees and the food is great. My only problem is that I’m not making a profit.” This could be absolutely true, except for the first statement. Your restaurant profit loss is happening for a reason. Maybe you do have great employees, your customers are happy and your food is great. However, if you want to increase restaurant profit, then you need to determine where to correct issues. Yes, unfortunately, there is a problem.

For the most part, you have a great restaurant, but something is holding you back from the profits you could be making.

increase restaurant profit

Three Keys – Food + Labor + Expenses compared to Sales drives your restaurant profit

Let’s take a look at all the aspects that go into your restaurant and see what could be happening. Do you know your overall profit margin? How much do you spend and your profit margin? What about the ratio of your expense to sales?

I know, you may think, ‘well, I have an accountant or bookkeeper to do that.’ If you have someone to help you keep your books, you are on the right track, but you need to be aware of what all those numbers mean.

An ideal prime cost should be between 60 to 65%

Food and Labor drive the prime cost

Maintain a Food Cost Percentage of 25 to 35%. Food cost percentage may fluctuate due to your menu mix and type of restaurant. For example, an upscale restaurant, casual style dining, a sandwich shop or a bar each will have different food costs.

Labor cost percentage should average between 25 to 38%. Fast food restaurants can achieve labor as low as 25%, but full-service restaurants may have labor percentages between 30% and 38%, especially upscale dining. These two components are your prime cost, so overall this should be in the range of 60% to 65%. The remaining expenses are your overhead.

restaurant profit

Food Costs:

You may say, “I’m aware of my food costs because I know how much money goes out to my food suppliers and vendors.” Food Cost includes more than just how much you pay your food vendors or suppliers. Food cost also includes how you price your menu, how the food is prepared, how much food is going out the door. You need to look at the cost of goods sold as well as the profit you make after sales. The end result is your food cost percentage.

Do you complete an inventory? If not, are you aware of how much food is wasted due to spoilage? If you aren’t aware of how much of each item is in your restaurant, how do you know what to order? Are you also aware of how much your cooks and servers waste due to mistakes?

Let’s look at one very low-cost item, such as salad mix. By decreasing your waste percentage from 10% to 4% on an average sales of 1000 salads a week with a retail cost of $3.50 per side salad, the difference in your retail profits $5,000 to $10,000 in one year for just that one low-cost item. See the charts below for a breakdown.

increase restaurant profits

Keep in mind we didn’t add the cost and price of the salad toppings of tomatoes, onions, olive, peppers, croutons and other items depending on the way your salads are made. Imagine the difference of keeping those items under control as well. Better yet, look at a high-cost item such as steak or a drink such as fine wine, depending on your menu mix. Also, you can imagine that by just increasing your menu cost by a few cents will add up to greater profits over a year. You could be losing hundreds of thousands of dollars a year just in food waste. Do you track the waste that occurs? Do you know how much food is voided or comped?

Some businesses do monthly inventories. You should consider doing weekly inventories so that you can catch issues sooner. If you find one or two items that you want to track more closely to determine the issues. Do a daily “Perpetual Inventory” on those items. This will help you pinpoint when the items are going missing and who could be responsible for that loss.

There are several ways to keep those costs down and increase restaurant profit. One way is by doing an inventory of your food items and tracking your total sales and costs of the food from your vendors. If you find missing food or beverages during inventory, then can be accounted for by waste, then there may be theft happening. There are so many ways that could occur because people could be voiding checks after the food is made. They could be walking out with food from your restaurant. There could be people eating or drinking away your profits. People could be giving away food to friends or family. Bartenders or servers may give free food or drinks to try to increase their tips. Most employees are not doing this intentionally to hurt your profits, but to be honest, most people don’t really think about it. It isn’t coming off of their paychecks, so they don’t care. Maybe your managers aren’t paying attention to what is happening or are feeding into the issues.

Increase Restaurant Profits by Avoiding Profit Loss

There are several ways to keep those costs down. One way is by doing an inventory of your food items and tracking your total sales and costs of the food from your vendors. If you find there is a lot more food or beverages missing from your inventory that can be accounted for by waste, then there may be theft happening. There are so many ways that could occur.

It is possible people void checks after the customer leave, especially if cash was paid for the food. Employees could be walking out with food from your restaurant. Maybe people eat or drink your profits in free meals. Employees could be giving away food to friends or family. Bartenders or servers may give free food or drinks to try to increase their tips. Most employees are not doing this intentionally to hurt your profits, but to be honest, most people don’t really think about it. It isn’t coming off of their paychecks, so they don’t care or realize how much this hurts your profits. Maybe your managers aren’t paying attention to what is happening actually buy into the issues.

Are you paying too much for food?

Maybe a different vendor will have better prices. Account for the quality of the food, as well as the price. Poor quality could result in lower sales from dissatisfied customers, and that’s a tough balancing act. Maybe cutting and preparing food from fresh items will save you money. A bag of whole potatoes to make fresh-cut fries is usually much less expensive than buying pre-cut fries.

Another issue could arise if your staff needs more training. Perhaps they make more mistakes than they should. Taking the time to train them can make a difference in your bottom line.

Manage Menu Prices

It also could be your menu pricing. Are you charging more or less than you should for your menu items? Maybe changing prices can change your profit. You need to charge a reasonable amount, compared to the local competition. If you want to make more money, consider lowering your food cost percentage. Have you evaluated your food cost percentages or used a menu pricing tool? Your food cost percentage should be between 25% to 35%. You can use our menu pricing tool to help you figure out your prices.

Are you following proper sanitation and food controls?

What about using date dot stickers? Do your employees understand FIFO (First In, First Out)? If not, then maybe you need to have some training on this matter. You could be losing food to spoilage when all it would take is rotating the oldest items to the front to use first and the newest stock to the back.

How often should you do an Inventory?

Some businesses do monthly inventories. You should consider doing weekly inventories so that you can catch issues sooner. If you find one or two items that you want to track more closely to determine when the issues are happening, and who is working when the items are going missing you should consider doing a daily “Perpetual Inventory” on those items. This will help you pinpoint when the items are going missing and who could be responsible for that loss.

Now, let’s look at the mix of labor costs.

Labor Awareness:

Do you often have people standing around without doing anything? People should be busy throughout the shift and the work should be divided among the staff on duty. One person not pulling their weight will cause issues with staff members seeing the environment as unfair and decreasing employee morale. Set the expectations up from the point of hiring the employee and from the start of each shift. Using a side work chart can help to distribute the work, so that one person isn’t left with the majority of the work. This will also ensure that the work is being completed throughout the shift for a better functioning restaurant. If someone is not working their load, then discuss that with the person to make sure they understand. Keep your attitude positive and that will help a lot.

Do you cut employees when your business is slow? Do you build your schedule around your business trends? Are you prepared for special events in your community? Labor costs are part of the prime numbers which also includes payroll taxes, employee benefits, health insurance, unemployment and workers compensation.

What impacts my restaurant’s labor percentage?

Restaurant sales will affect your labor cost. Restaurant profit loss can occur because management did not react quickly to reduce the number of employees when the sales slow down. Management plays a huge role in this in your restaurant profit loss or gains.

Employee rate of pay can affect your labor cost percentage. When creating your employee schedules keep in mind the pay rate of different employees and that person’s job proficiency. However, if someone at higher pay rate is fast and efficient, maybe that’s worth the additional pay. If someone is not as proficient, maybe the person needs additional training or a different position. Keep this in mind when hiring staff because it’s not good to drop pay rates, but starting someone at a lower rate and once they become better at the job, the pay can increase with the experience and job proficiency.

Balance the employee skills and pay rates.

Do not overload the shift with heavy hitter pay rates. The employees with the highest pay rate should generally be working your busiest shift and your most productive employees. Lower paid employees can work during slower days. Also, balance out the experience levels so that not all the inexperienced people are on at the same time. Spread them out all throughout the week. The first employees that should be sent home due to a drop in sales should be the employees that have the highest pay rates or are the least proficient at their jobs.

Cross-train your employees to work in more than one position. If sales drop, then that crossed-trained employee will reduce the labor cost by performing more than one role.

Do you teach employee safety techniques to keep them as safe as possible? Do your staff know what to do if there is a robbery, fire, power outage, or local disaster? There are so many times we think it could never happen to us, but it certainly could happen. Knowing what to do can make a difference when it comes to workers compensation, customer or employee safety.

Other Expenses:

Other expenses are your overhead costs for utilities, lease or mortgage amounts, taxes, repair costs, equipment maintenance, advertising, pest control. You can negotiate rates for some of these items, or shop around for maintenance agreements.

You can look for free or low-cost sources of advertising your restaurant. Social media has become a big thing for businesses. Do you have a Facebook page? Do you have a website? Have you registered your restaurant with the local yellow page listings–on paper and online? If you aren’t sure how to do these things or don’t have the time, maybe an employee may be familiar with this and will help you out with for free or at a low cost. Check out local business colleges or tech schools to see if someone there can help you. There are lots of options you may not even have considered.

A Clean Restaurant Can Increase Restaurant Profit

If customers are turned off by a dirty restaurant, it can definitely impact your restaurant profits. Do you keep your restaurant clean to reduce the risk of pests? The restrooms are a big thing for customers. If it is grungy or dirty they will likely assume that the rest of the restaurant is also dirty and may never come back, but most customers say nothing. There are lots of great cleaning checklists and cleaning charts. Keeping up with cleaning is vital to your restaurant’s reputation, food safety and customer loyalty.

I was taking Tramadol by as it was prescribed by a neurologist at the diagnosis of intervertebral hernias with acute severe pain. I felt the effect after taking the pill in less than an hour. The pain was dulled and it became clearly easier.

Now, hopefully, all the things that could be happening to decrease your profits can be addressed. You can check out the forms pages for useful charts, forms and checklists. You can also find some great spreadsheets for tracking labor, inventory control, sales, and even scheduling.

If you still can’t pinpoint where the money is being drained from your profits, then we would be happy to help you out with an assessment or even just a free phone consultation with one of our experts could help guide you in the right direction. You won’t know what you are losing if you aren’t aware of what is happening. Be informed, be smart and set up systems to control your restaurant to help you move from restaurant profit loss to a high-profit restaurant.

Forms for Restaurants

Forms for Restaurants – How to beat your competition

Beat the Competition

We know as restaurant owners, managers and employees we also eat out occasionally. I don’t know about you, but many of us quickly start to critique the service that we receive from those restaurants.  As we are sitting waiting for our food to arrive at our table, even while involved in a conversation with those at our table, we also tend to notice what is happening. We do it naturally because we love the restaurant world. It’s in our blood… We observe the surroundings looking for employee interaction with customers, service standards, cleanliness, and everything.

Equally, you are dining out at those eating places you discover flaws all throughout your visit. You’ll also notice things that they are doing right. You compare your customer service to their restaurant customer service. So what did you discover?

Forms for restaurants can prepare the restaurant prior to any meal period.  There are some many forms for restaurants, each form serves a purpose.  These forms were created by individuals that spent half their lives in the food service industry.

If that restaurant isn’t up to our standards, we aren’t likely to go back. There are a great number of restaurants that are providing below standard service to their customers. Did you know that 80% to 90 of start-up restaurants fail with-in the first year? While 10% to 20% actually survive the first year. While these figures are scary, you have control of surviving or failing. No matter what the economy is like, you can survive if you know what your customers want and how to provide that service. Getting restaurant customers to say “Wow! That place is a great place to go!”  should be every restaurant owner’s goal.

Other restaurant owners, managers and employees could be sitting at your restaurant tables. They are critiquing you. One way to help you get ahead of the competition is by using every resource possible to make your restaurant better.

Have you considered that simply using a Kitchen and Server readiness checklists can help you prepare for customers and increase the “wow” factor? The kitchen and server readiness forms will help you achieve your goals.  Your goals can be easily obtained by utilizing forms for restaurants.

Are your staff trained in what to do? You may not realize it, but your customers notice if your people aren’t trained. There are really easy to use training tests for your service staff and kitchen staff that can be implemented at any time. This will help your staff be more confident and prepared to do their job.

Using steps of servicetime and temperature charts and other resources can increase repeat business and your bottom line because your service staff and kitchen have resources to help them be more proficient.

We love the Pre-Shift Alley Rally  Forms for restaurants was created because of the same practice that was used in many restaurants that succeeded. This gets the staff motivated and makes sure that everyone is reaching for the same goals you want from your restaurant.

There are so many different forms, checklists, tests, reference charts and so much more that can help you right at your fingertips on our website. These are just tools to help you take your food and service to the next level. Just like the cook needs the right equipment and tools to work, your restaurant needs the right tools to work.

Don’t let your competition beat you. Get organized and use forms, quick  reference charts, checklists and spreadsheets daily. They are an inexpensive and easy way to get your restaurant on track.

We challenge you to go into your own restaurant, bar or diner and sit down as though you are coming in as a customer for the first time. You know nothing about this place… I know it’s hard to do, What do you notice? What is great about your place? What do you think should be changed? Contact us and and see if we have anything that can help you get those customers to be happy that they came to your place and saying “Wow” to their friends, family, co-workers and neighbors.

Forms for restaurants can be found at:

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