Running a restaurant can be a lot of work. There are kitchen operations, inventory, menu creation, supplier management, marketing, sales, accounting, and many other moving parts to consider when maintaining a food business. To keep up with the increasing demands of a restaurant, it’s always a great idea to implement a POS system to help automate a store’s accounting, financials, and sales reporting in one seamless system.

The POS terminal market is expected to hit AUD 162.1 billion by 2027, boasting a CAGR of 7.5%. A POS system, or point of sale system, can provide a lot of value to any restaurant of any form or size. In this article, we’ll discuss these benefits and the ways you can successfully implement a POS system for your restaurant.

How POS systems help restaurants

Subscribing to software helps restaurants stay optimal. With tech-based systems in place, restaurant staff can stay optimal and productive by eliminating manual work like writing out receipts, computing for tax, keeping inventory logs, and other administrative tasks. 

A restaurant POS system, for instance, helps provide so much value to a food business. Here are three of the main benefits that a POS program can help your restaurant stay efficient.

  • Save employee time and effort. Arguably one of the most valuable assets a company has is the time and energy of your dedicated staff. But it goes to say that restaurants will never be able to maximize staff if they don’t have processes that help them put their time to good use. On average, 9 in 10 restaurants have fewer than fifty employees on their payroll. A POS system helps maximize those employees’ time and effort.
  • Data and analysis. One other value point of having a POS system in your restaurant is having a place to store valuable information like sales logs, tax computations, inventories, customer details, and much more. A POS system can also convert raw data into cumulative reports that provide more insight into your restaurant’s performance.
  • Marketing applications. Point of sale systems are also handy tools to have if a restaurant wants to run in-store promotions like loyalty programs, raffle-based contests, and other promotions and marketing ideas. These kinds of ideas can help significantly increase business sales and revenue.

6 tips for effective POS implementation

So you’re quite serious about applying a POS system into your restaurant or chain of restaurants possibly. But where does one start? Here are six basic tips to help you get started on your POS system implementation project plan.

1. Consider your hardware

Any POS implementation project plan will start first with considering all aspects around hardware. Most systems will have specific hardware needs like touchpad screens, receipt printers, and so on. There are also network systems that you need to think about if you want to connect multiple POS systems across various branches if you have multiple restaurants. 

Factor in the budget for hardware you will need to run a full POS system in your restaurant. Don’t forget to consider other ancillary expenses such as staff training, internet service providers, virus and malware protection software, and the occasional maintenance and repair budget for when the system encounters issues later on.

2. Find the best POS solution for your context

Not all restaurants are alike. Some have larger menus while some have shortlists of offerings. Others serve one type of dish while another might serve a completely different culture-based cuisine. There are cafes, fast food chains, fine dining restaurants, bards, family restaurants— the list could go on. 

And for all these kinds, shapes, and forms of restaurants, your POS needs will vary. Find the best option for you by checking out this list of POS software solutions to start with. Some considerations to keep in mind is what features are non-negotiable to you, how much you’re willing to spend, your staff’s technical know-how, user experience, customer service and tech support, and data storage needs.

3. Keep mobile in mind

The world is quickly moving towards a mobile-first environment and POS systems are closely following behind. The number of users in the mobile POS system segment will most likely hit 1.89 billion users by 2025. A mobile POS system, or mPOS for short, can provide your staff flexibility and mobility. 

Keep in mind too that mobile POS systems are still relatively new technologies so don’t expect them to provide all your company’s needs just yet. But that isn’t a far possibility too.

4. Study software integrations

One of the most important aspects of any technology is its ability to communicate and exchange data and information seamlessly through built-in integrations. Systems like H&L POS, for instance, integrate with all kinds of finance, payment, data storage, marketing, HR, and online booking apps. It integrates with systems like Xero, Quickbooks, ResDiary, PayPal, CMS Hospitality, InnQuest, RoomKey, ZenGlobal, and dozens more.

Most systems will provide multiple integrations that allow for more automations, which saves a significant amount of time, energy, and resources. For instance, some POS systems start using QR codes in restaurants to better manage bookings by creating unique codes that customers can just scan in to confirm bookings or even make payments. 

5. Integrate operations and marketing

Proper POS technology implementation involves not just integrating apps into the system, but business operations as well. Three of the most common operational activities that restaurants should align with their POS systems is inventory, reservation, and marketing. 

A POS system can help track stocks and supplies, the number of visits by a regular customer, or reservations made. They can even perform advanced tasks like automatically informing the front of the house when orders might be running low in stock so they can stop pushing them. Using digital tools help restaurateurs in many ways if we can link them up with promotional efforts, operations, inventory, and reservation systems.

6. Provide a full onboarding process

Last but not the least, a restaurant that wants to efficiently launch a POS system in their restaurant must never skip on the onboarding process. Whether you’re training existing staff or incoming ones, POS operating must be a part of the training process, whether people will be using it heavily or not. Some of the things that must be included in the onboarding process including steps on how to operate POS, what the company uses the POS for, common issues and workarounds, tech-based considerations, and many others.

Most POS providers provide a knowledge base and virtual (or sometimes even face-to-face) training and support for clients. So don’t hesitate to ask your POS system provider for a demo, especially when launching a POS system to a handful of your existing staff. 

POS Systems help solve restaurants’ problems

No matter what kind or brand of POS system hardware or software a restaurant uses, the system must provide one common given— it must solve a restaurant’s problems. While that may sound pretty obvious at first glance, it’s surprising how many restaurants today implement the wrong system or implement the right system in a wrong manner and cause more problems than solutions in the short or even long term.

Don’t rush into a POS implementation program. Take time to plan and research, and get all the necessary support you need to do it right. Successfully putting together a POS system rollout plan could be the game-changer that brings your restaurant the next breakthrough.

H&L POS – working with you to help you grow your business

H&L POS has been delivering POS solutions with extensive back of house and staff management systems to the hospitality industry for more than 30 years. As hospitality people at heart, H&L understand the critical requirements for each food and beverage operation. We have staff in every state of Australia providing direction and advice as you grow and as technology changes.

Call us at 1800 778 340, email sales@hlpos.com or fill in the form below to discuss your venue’s needs.