In the changing hospitality world we operate in, EPoS and restaurant management systems are pivotal in helping us meet new needs and overcome new challenges including:
- New and disruptive hybrid restaurant and takeaway concepts
- Customer demands for instantaneous service, menu value and nutritional information
- Profit margin shrinkage and need for greater efficiency
- Introduction of the self-serve kiosk
Without doubt, the biggest enabler to successfully harnessing technology solutions to combat new and existing threats, is strategic and open application integration and the creation of a powerful and intelligent EPoS data Hub.
Relieving The Pressure Through Multiple System Integration: New Technologies
Hospitality is no longer just about a great menu, service or atmosphere. Customers expect businesses to deliver omni-channel experiences, with technology having a meaningful impact on every aspect of the customer journey.
In a recent report, 55% of consumers agree, technology in restaurants improves the overall experience* and a third think technology can speed up service*.
Steve Rolfe, Managing Director of pointOne believes EPoS as an intelligent data hub is the bedrock every restaurateur needs for both short and long term commercial growth:
“With multiple systems and applications now being required to achieve new and heightened levels of efficiency, experience and profit margin, EPoS as an intelligent hub has never been so important. The critical role of EPoS as the backbone of the restaurant operation will only become even more prevalent as new technologies expand and consumer expectations and impatience increase.
“Operators that do not put system integration at the forefront of their technology investments, will inevitably pay the heavy price of system silos in terms of profit leakage and the customer experience.”
EPoS as a Hub
One of the most effective and reliable ways to integrate multiple software is using your EPoS as a central data hub. Typically, your applications such as the point of sale system, online ordering, loyalty apps, CRM, payroll, delivery apps, kitchen management, payments and head office reporting dashboards will run alongside each other.
Today, your EPoS platform should be the heartbeat of your business, pumping data across the operation, driving the customer experience, delivering in-depth management reports, enabling automation, communicating with customers and staff and the turn-key to your overall commercial health and survival.
Ensuring your EPoS is fully integrated with all essential features is no longer a choice but a necessity, along with open AIs (Application Integration) to protect your investment and ensure you are always able to take advantage of new technologies.
What The Right EPoS Hub Can Do For You
Now much more than a till system, today’s best EPoS solutions go beyond transaction to offer a universal platform that unites the different parts of your restaurant.
The best systems also contain features to meet the special challenges of QSR and casual dining. Equipped with the right platform, you will be able to:
- Increase average customer order value
- Increase gross profit
- Serve customers faster
- Increase repeat diners
- Enhance brand loyalty
- Speed up and ease kitchen management
- Optimise stock
- Increase back office efficiency
- Increase staff menu knowledge
- Deliver an altogether better customer experience
Should You Expect More From Your EPoS Platform?
Today you should expect a lot from your EPoS, it should become a highly integrated eco-system to work intelligently for you and your customers.
- Make you more efficient, enable you to serve quicker and reduce administration
- Increase your cost effectiveness, by reducing stock holding and improving cash flow
- Remove process and data duplication with information held in a single file
- Provide an integrated platform to manage restaurant(s) and online ordering as one
- Be modular, making it easy to add new features and grow with you
- Provide the functions that your customers want, such as mix and match meal orders
- Make it easier to purchase, price, promote and sell your menu
- Help you develop a customer database that can be used for loyalty programmes and promotions; with powerful data, you can track special dates such as birthdays to offer personalised communications at the right times
- Generate a multiplicity of reports to help you make faster, more informed decisions
- Enable you to offer an enhanced customer experience that goes the extra mile.
10 Essential EPoS Features For QSR And Casual Dining
1. Enterprise Stock Control
If you do not have a good strong stock management module in your EPoS solution then you are almost certainly losing money. Having enterprise stock control means you can minimise over and under ordering, track your profit margins and reduce the amount of time required in maintaining your stock levels by using the order generator facilities and extensive reporting.
With cloud-based reporting and functionality come the added and essential functionality to operate in real time giving you the critical ability for ‘first in first out’ stock control for ‘actual’ GP tracking and reporting, multi supply unit and price for single ingredients, multi-department management and cost/revenue allocation.
You can also manage new suppliers, ingredients and products in the cloud for simple multi-site management. Plus, recipe management, supplier ordering, line checking and stock variance reporting comes as standard.
2. Loyalty & Marketing
Loyalty programs are a must have for every QSR & Casual Dining restaurant and a good EPoS system will integrate with the market leading loyalty providers such as Como & Pepper HQ, or often will include a functional but standard loyalty and marketing module designed to help your customers return for more, encouraging footfall and increasing SPH (spend per head).
Introducing a loyalty scheme enables you to capture, target and promote your business with your best offers to your best market. Your EPoS should give you the most potential to tap into marketing opportunities by enabling the flow of real time customer data for multi-site operations.
Used together with a built-in promotion application your platform should be able to deliver you flexible loyalty schemes; branded mobile apps; real-time actionable data and insights; multi-channel communication and marketing automation.
3. Head Office Management
A Cloud-based Head Office application give you, your area managers and corporate head offices the ability to view, consolidate and manage each of their sites remotely, either singularly or as a group.
With every element of data syncing in real time, transparency is made simple and accurate for instant information flow and reporting, any time and at any place.
4. Kitchen Management (KMS)
A Kitchen Manager system will deliver you clear and concise instructions to kitchen staff via a simple & easy to view wall mounted touch screen that displays multiple orders, in either one or multiple section screens.
5. Tableside Ordering
Mobile PDAs and tablets for taking orders are on the increase and now can utilise all your common EPoS function on the move helping your serve outside, queue bust, reduce staff or just provide a more convenient way for your diners to order.
6. Online Ordering
Online Ordering enables your customers to order and pay via your website for delivery or in-store collection.
Coupled with a smartphone app that can be customised to your business, online ordering offers a unique way not only to reduce the pain in processing orders but to greatly increase the customer experience.
7. Chip & Pin
Today your EPoS system should be fully integrated with Chip & Pin. Features such as ‘Pay at Table’ enable you to reduce errors and speed up the payment process. End of day cash reconciliation is made simpler without the need to Z your PDQ system.
8. Mobile Apps
Smartphone apps are fast becoming essential tools for hospitality businesses to enable you to stay relevant now and in the future. From table and online order and pay, it’s all about creating new customer facing apps to enhance your customers’ experiences.
9. Driver Apps
If you need to take orders fast, send to prep, allocate to driver and manage priorities then your EPoS system should have an integrated order management solution to keep your order to delivery operation swift, efficient and profitable.
10. Open Third Party Integration
To create one powerfully efficient EPoS hub, you need to ensure your platform has open and easy API integration for applications including Stock Control; Payroll & Scheduling; Table Reservations; Online Ordering; Loyalty; Hotel PMS; Payments.
A Guide To Choosing The Right EPoS Solution And Protecting Investment
If you are reviewing your EPoS solution, a new e-guide is available providing insights into what you may need today and tomorrow: “Driving Success in an Era of Competition & Consumer Change. Till, Tablet to Kiosk: The Restaurateur’s Guide to 2019 & Beyond”
To download your copy of the free report CLICK HERE
*Statistics from Forbes