During the last administration, many changes came about that greatly impacted the restaurant industry. The Affordable Care Act and overtime rules are two that stand out and while the minimum wage increase was not a federal decision, these are all issues that had analysts buzzing with predictions and restaurateurs debating how to adapt their businesses to these modifications.
With the election of a new administration, it’s no secret that restaurant executives (and the country, in general) continue to be divided with interpretations, forecasts, fear or excitement of the future and the direction in which we’re headed. While it’s too soon to see any major changes due to the new administration (as shifts in trends and legislature take time to manifest) some top issues impacting our industry, continue to be pondered. Many restaurant executives are keeping a watchful eye while preparing for the unforeseeable future.
Some Good News Along the Way
While the future may seem undefined, the most recent activity may give us a glimpse of things to come. Some highlights from the last few months demonstrate a level of optimism:
- The stock market has hit record highs, with increased valuations of some restaurant stocks
- Impressive growth for brands like Chipotle, Domino’s and Panera
- Major acquisitions at record prices for Popeyes and Panera
- A proposed tax cut for American corporations
- Same Store Sales and Same Store Traffic have experienced an upward shift so far in April
Taking Control of the Situation
While some things are beyond our control, there are tools that restaurant businesses can utilize that can help their individual growth and success. One of the better ways of staying ahead of the game is to employ predictive analytics and benchmarking. This does not mean to only analyze information within your restaurant operations. The savvy restaurant executives take it one step further by examining the performance of their competitors. What are some key factors they are looking at?
- Percent change in same store sales
- Sales performance comparisons
- Week, Period, and Year-to-Date data
- Comparison of different markets and locations
Adapting to the Transformations
Change in the restaurant industry can have positive or negative results and many have mixed feelings on what the future holds for restaurant businesses. Though we don’t yet know if the new administration’s plans will have a positive impact, we can hope they will bring forth new opportunities. What we would all like to see is the potential for a bright future for our economy and industry. Maintaining flexibility and being open to innovation can lead to a restaurant company’s success. Utilizing some form of reliable metrics can bring invaluable benefits to the bottom line. And that is one aspect that we have control over.
What Are Your Thoughts?
How is your restaurant business preparing for the next four years?
Please share your stories, comments, and any other tips that may be helpful!
Mirus is a multi-unit restaurant reporting software used by operations, finance, IT, and marketing.
For more information, please visit: www.mirus.com
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