Cloud-based reporting is the new standard for businesses. Every type of retail business relies on metrics to successfully track trends and profits. This is especially important in the restaurant industry, where your numbers can change drastically over the course of just one day. With that in mind, here are 3 top ways that cloud reporting can improve restaurant business performance.


1. Set Your Schedule

In the restaurant business, the cost of labor is closely tied to your daily profits. You need to have enough servers on hand to keep your guests happy – but if you’re paying too many employees on a particular shift, you’ll start losing money fast. Robust reporting technology can track and compare the cost of labor with the projected income from every shift, including your busiest rushes and slowest periods. These trends can change based on the day of the week and the time of year. For instance, your coffee shop may do brisk business with commuters every weekday morning, but experience lower volume on Sundays. If you’re located near a university, you can expect profit margins to change over the summer months.

Tracking labor costs against projected profits not only keeps you in the black; it can also boost employee loyalty. If you keep too many servers on a particular shift, they’ll all lose out on valuable tips. On the other hand, employing too few workers may make your servers feel overwhelmed by the volume of customers. Make sure to stay tuned in to changing trends and find the sweet spot over time.


2. Waste Not, Want Not

Cloud-based reporting is a must-have tool for any business that keeps a rotating inventory. This process requires much more finesse in a restaurant than it does in, say, a shoe store. True, a shoe store owner will need to rotate between sandals in the summer and boots in the fall – but that process takes place over several weeks or months. In a restaurant, rotating your inventory is an important part of every single day on the job. It’s essential for you to track how often you use each ingredient, how much each one costs compared to the menu price of your dishes, and how quickly every item will spoil. You probably don’t need to restock baking soda weekly – but you may need to buy fresh milk that often.

Dynamic reports allow you to track every ingredient in real time. Just by looking at your phone, you can see how much of each item you have, when you last purchased it, and how much money it’s added to your bottom line. This information is an important part of building a delicious and sustainable menu.


3. Take Your Time

A business owner’s work is never done. Even if you can take days off, those days are probably spent thinking about your restaurant. No matter how you schedule your downtime, there are some tasks that will always take you away from your business. Perhaps you’re touring a farm, meeting with an investor, or just doing your taxes. Wherever your work takes you, make sure you can accomplish off-site tasks without worrying about your restaurant while you’re away. Cloud-based reporting makes it possible for you to keep an eye on your business from anywhere in the world, as long as you have an internet connection. Broaden your horizons in order to expand your work! And while you’re on a food tour of the Italian countryside, you can take a look at your daily metrics and make changes on the fly.


Any way you slice it, cloud-based reporting is an important part of retail development. How does your restaurant track these important metrics?