It seems like, since forever, that Product Mix or PMIX as it’s known, has been a staple in the restaurant arsenal for evaluating what’s selling and menu performance. And while, PMIX does deliver some interesting information like how many of x, y or z did I sell over a day, week, month, etc., it lacks the details needed to see shifts in demand, which makes it a poor choice to use when you’re wanting to make critical decisions about menu changes. For now, let’s look closer at what PMIX can deliver.
Before we jump into the characteristics of an Enterprise Data Warehouse (‘EDW’) it might help to define what an EDW consists of. An EDW is a centralized repository that integrates data from various transactional, legacy, or 3rd party systems and applications that are used to operate and manage your business. In contrast to these systems, the EDW is built for analysis and retrieval of data rather than the upkeep of individual transactional records.
Ralph Kimball, one of the original architects of data warehousing and someone whose teachings we adhere to, provided a more concise definition of a data warehouse: “A data warehouse is a copy of transaction data specifically structured for query and analysis.”.
Topics: Restaurant IT
According to Microsoft, there are 1.2B (that’s right, B for Billion) Office users today. Of that, roughly 750M use Excel. Wow! That’s a lot of number crunching going on.
But what’s even more interesting is that 9 out of 10 (88%) spreadsheets have errors on them – that warrants another Wow! That’s a lot of inaccurate information being used by companies. And depending on the data being reported it could have a significant impact on a company’s regulatory compliance, perceived health not to mention incorrect assumptions being made about strategy, marketing, etc.
Today, for many restaurant companies, the challenge of harnessing the myriad of disparate data generated by the systems (POS, BOH, ERP, etc.) used to operate and manage their businesses is just that, a challenge. And when it comes to the Human Resource (HR) department, well, they're no different - the reason being, data associated with different tasks such as hiring, job satisfaction surveys, training details and performance management reviews all reside in different databases.
Topics: Restaurant Data Warehouse
"POS, Meet BOH"
In today’s restaurant space, the business of owning and operating a restaurant is more challenging and competitive than ever before. This means it’s more important than ever to leverage technology to your advantage and no better place to start than using your Point-of-Sale system’s (POS) sales data combined with your Back of House (BOH) to help more tightly control your two biggest controllable expenses – food and labor costs.
Looking more closely, restaurant food & beverage purchases plus labor expenses account for 60 to as much as 68 cents of every dollar in restaurant sales. The combined total is referred to as; “Prime Cost”, and it's at this crossroads where the battle for restaurant profitability takes place. Why, because you have the ability to control these expenses. Unlike your fixed costs (lease, utilities, insurance, etc.), you can directly impact your food cost percentage by more effective purchasing, product handling and menu pricing and your labor with tools to help with allocation, scheduling and overtime reduction/prevention. More on the labor from an earlier series of Blogs.
Restaurant organizations are increasingly turning to data to help manage their operations more effectively, improve marketing, drive revenues, increase profit margins, ensure competitiveness and grow their businesses. Unfortunately, today, the most widely implemented solutions aren’t Business Intelligence (BI) or Business Analytics (BA) solutions. No, today, the vast majority of restaurant companies rely on reports generated by the very systems used to operate (POS, BOH, etc.), their businesses.
Why? In my humble opinion, there’s a lot of confusion around terms being used to describe what any restaurant company may be receiving when it comes to their reporting. There’s Above Store Reporting (ASR), BI and BA to name a few. While they each provide a means to an end, that end is very different in each case.
According to Wikipedia, Customer Experience (CX) is the product of an interaction between an organization and a customer over the duration of their relationship. This interaction is made up of three parts:
- The customer's journey.
- The brand touchpoints the customer interacts with.
- The environments the customer experiences (including digital environment) during their experience.
In addition to the focus on hiring and retaining staff, labor and food costs, customer engagement technology and winning the guest / customer through exceptional service are among the top priorities for restaurant companies that want to win the wallet and mind of the customer.
Topics: Restaurant Operations
What's The Word?!
What on earth is Big Data, a Data Lake and several other mind boggling tech terms you’ll want to be familiar with…
Spreadsheets are giving way to technology designed to deal with the mountains of (Giga, Tera and Peta Bytes) data companies are generating / accessing to gain deeper insights into their businesses and needed to remain competitive.
Whether you’re a seasoned IT professional or just now beginning to consider more advanced reporting tools you’ll want to become familiar with the lingo of the day. I say of the day primarily because new words / phrases are being added at a record pace – just look at Merriam Webster, heck, they added over 1000 new words in 2016 alone. The tech space is no different – did you know, not that long ago, that the definition of Computer was; ‘person who does computations’.
Topics: Restaurant Custom Reporting
Data integration is best described as a process in which heterogeneous data (marketing, sales, operations, customer, mystery shop, cleanliness, finance, etc.) often referred to as information silos, is extracted, transformed and combined in a data warehouse where it's accessible through a presentation layer that allows it to be used together to form more meaningful and actionable reports.
Topics: Restaurant IT
We all know that theft happens in the restaurant industry; heck, it happens in most industries. For example, did you know; according to a study by the National Retail Federation, 2016 was the first year ever that 100% of retailers said they were victims of organized retail theft.
Unfortunately there are numerous stats to back up the prevalence of restaurant theft:
Topics: Restaurant Loss Management