Overseeing restaurant inventory can be a special additional job for a manager or it can a part of the day for the owner. It may not be the highest priority, but it is right underneath the food. Your supply includes your food ingredients, containers, equipment for cooking, cashing out patrons or even furniture. Managing your restaurant supply is all about keeping proper inventory, taking care of current inventory, and ordering inventory ahead of time.
Keeping Proper Inventory
To know how much, you have of something you must have a proper count. To get a proper count your items need to be organized. Make sure your restaurant has a designated area for your storage and inventory. It will help to keep all related items in the same room, with labels and in a respectable order that will allow for easy counting. If there are containers or bags you can also stick little labels on the outside so you will always know how many you have in a certain batch.
Taking Care of Inventory
A batch of cups really can’t be included in the inventory if they are smashed behind the shelf and can’t be seen. Nor can they be counted if they are smashed under some other products. Damaged inventory can cause major setbacks if you find yourself relying on this last little bit of items to get you through the time until your next supply comes in. Broken kitchen items, and even equipment, need to be documented as removed from the work area and subtracted from the inventory list. It is important to note these items for possible returns to the vendor or service calls, or even for the accounting books at the end of the year. You would hate to see a brand-new cup sealing machine on the books to be paid for over a period, when the equipment was broken or stolen after the first month.
Don’t wait until you use your last amount of a product, or you finally find the damaged product in the back. Order when you can see that you are almost out. Set limits in the beginning so you can eyeball when products are getting low. If things are dwindling at about the same rate, you can schedule a day to count your inventory and order everything at once. At first it will take lots of counting every other day until you see what your traffic is like. If your restaurant is popular then you may be ordering as soon as every couple of days.
Managing restaurant inventory can be challenging from the food end, but it can also be fun from a products standpoint. You are making everyone’s life much easier if things are always in stock, and that’s one worry that no one must have. To properly manage your supply, you should make sure you keep proper inventory, take care of current inventory, and order inventory ahead of time.