The primary goal of quick-service restaurants or QSRs is to provide quality meals to customers in the fastest time possible.
Unfortunately, this objective poses a variety of challenges to QSR owners. First, they have to ensure all customers get the correct orders, whether they are dining in, ordering takeaway, or using the drive-thru.
QSR owners need to make all processes involved proceed in the quickest time possible as well. From ordering to payment and handing off the food to the customers, all these have to be done within a matter of minutes.
Lastly, QSR owners have to make sure that all the food they serve to their patrons is of excellent quality and tastes great. This has to be consistent whether diners eat inside the premises or in their homes and whether they are first-time or repeat customers.
If you own a QSR, these are challenges that you can handle effectively when you have a quick-service restaurant POS system. This technology streamlines various processes involved in running a fast food place that will help you and your team improve and maintain productivity and efficiency in your establishment.
When your restaurant builds a reputation for being consistent and efficient, there is no reason for your brand not to enjoy success and longevity in the foodservice industry.
What to Look For in a QSR POS System
Not all QSR POS systems are the same. Some are more helpful for quick service restaurants, while others can turn out to be more detrimental.
Choosing a QSR POS platform that has all the essential features is crucial if you want to run an efficient and productive service every day.
But what features should you look for in a POS system designed for quick service restaurants? Here are the six you should prioritize:
1. Order management
All customers expect one thing from QSRs: quick service. Because of this, your POS platform should support and facilitate this and not hinder it.
Your system should enable your staff to receive and process orders quickly. A platform that has a simple interface and touchscreen that allows them to input the customer’s preferred dishes, including any special requests, can significantly cut down the time needed to complete this step.
The POS should facilitate the fast processing of payments as well. Whether customers pay by cash or card, your staff should be able to complete all transactions, including giving the change in the shortest time possible.
Lastly, your system should be able to provide the kitchen staff with the details of every order in real-time via print-outs or a kitchen display system (KDS). This allows them to prepare orders faster and more efficiently.
2. Online ordering capability
Your restaurant can process and prepare food faster when customers can order online. A POS that allows them to do this on your website and app is, therefore, a feature that you should prioritize.
An ideal POS system should come with integrations that enable your restaurant to process online orders. Additionally, if you have different branches, it must have the capability to segregate these orders based on customer location and identify which one can deliver their food faster.
This feature should also be able to gather customer information in real-time and save phone numbers and email addresses for keeping contacts. It should also allow you to easily check on their order history so that it can provide suggestions.
Moreover, this feature should enable customers to also see their order history and have the option for online payment so that they can complete all transactions more quickly.
3. Inventory management
Managing your restaurant’s inventory efficiently is crucial in running a successful QSR. The shortage of supplies can cause you to lose sales and even customers.
A POS program with inventory management features will enable you to keep your supplies and products at optimal levels. It should provide you notifications when stocks are running low and send you updates when any change is made in real time.
The best QSR POS software must also allow you to set auto-order levels so that your program can order for you from your preferred suppliers.
Additionally, make sure it is cloud-based so that you can access data and get in touch with your suppliers when your stocks are running low wherever you are.
4. Data analytics and reports
To manage a successful quick-service restaurant, you need to have access to accurate, intelligible reports. Your POS should be able to provide these, too.
In addition to inventory, these reports should also include data on sales, transactions, taxes, and overall daily activities. When you have access to these important pieces of information, you can make forecasts and smart decisions regarding purchases and other business-related undertakings.
Moreover, you should be able to read up-to-date information online wherever you are. This feature should also allow you to print them out so you can use and submit them for taxes, monthly or year end reports, or any situation that calls for them.
5. Employee management
Your team’s performance during service is crucial to your QSR’s success. As such, look for a POS program that monitors, records, and helps you track and manage employee performance.
The ideal POS system should provide detailed reports of your employees’ attendance and performance daily, bi-monthly, or monthly. These pieces of information can help you with making better work schedules and with assigning workers in the right areas.
This feature can also help you with computing accurate payrolls.
Lastly, the data you can get from this POS capability will enable you to make wise decisions regarding promoting deserving employees and letting go of the ones that are unproductive and simply troublesome.
6. CRM and promotions integration
Lastly, getting new customers and retaining loyal ones is also important for all restaurants. You can use a good POS system to boost your relationship with them.
You can use your software to send emails, newsletters, and SMS to customers that input their contact details when they ordered online. If they use an app, your program can send these notifications.
When you inform your customers that you are giving them discounts or freebies or have an exciting new product, you will entice them to visit your restaurant or order from you again online.
You can also use the software to create a loyalty program that will help you retain your current customers and attract new ones.
With the right POS platform, you can propel the success of your quick service restaurant both in the short and long run. As such, make sure the system you get has all these key features and that you and your team know how to use it efficiently.
Ahmad Alzaini is the co-founder and CEO of Foodics, a fast-growing foodtech startup. A businessman by nature, Alzaini is an app aficionado, developing businesses in Saudi Arabia within several industries. Today, Foodics has extended to new markets across the MENA region, processing over 1 billion transactions, and offering the latest technology in POS and restaurant management.