Restaurant Matters Issue 4

Aloha restaurant point of sale software: Not so much a cash till, more a way of life

As a restaurant owner, what does point of sale software mean to you? If you think of it as little more than a way of running a till, then you are not just out of date – you’re living in the technological stone age. Today’s POS systems are nothing less than game changers that will give you all you need to run your business.

Cost control? It’s at your finger-tips. Customer service? It’s built in. Credit and loyalty card integration? All part of the service. Mobility? You can take that for granted.

From fine dining to quick service, from independent restaurants to those in large hotel chains, Aloha EPOS is a proven and complete solution that gives you a way to revenue-rich restaurant management. Let’s take a look at some of the ways that Aloha can change the way you run your restaurant.

Mobility

MobilityMobility is a major game changer these days, as customers grow more comfortable with having their orders taken electronically. They see the benefits of accuracy, speed of service, speed of delivery and the avoidance of error. At the same time, the restaurateur sees the opportunities for up-selling.

Here’s an example. Supposing a customer places an order for a meal, but wants to change some of the ingredients or the amount. The waiter simply makes amendments on his hand-held device and relays it straight to the kitchen.

Prime among the hand-held devices used by today’s waiters is the Orderman Sol. Fully integrated with Aloha, it’s a hand-held device developed specifically for the hospitality industry, utilising a brilliant colour display, graphical user interface. It’s robust, intuitive, easy to learn, and it uses the RF frequency in place of wi-fi. In this way it prevents interference between waiter and kitchen from diners using their own wi-fi devices in the vicinity.

Real time management

Food costs, labour costs, which menu items are being most ordered, which are least popular… gone are the days when a daily, weekly or even a monthly analysis of such details would suffice. Today’s restaurateur needs that kind of information, not at the end of the day, or the end of the week, but right NOW.

For such information, Pulse Real Time, used in conjunction with Aloha enables owners to manage their restaurants, not just in real time, but also remotely, with information delivered to the user’s smart phone or tablet, wherever they are.

Customer engagement

Social media can be useful to spread the word about your restaurant but, in the wrong hands, something as simple as a quick tweet can be to your detriment.

To address that, Aloha has a social media component which monitors tweets. If anything in a tweet is seen to have a negative impact on a particular client, a timely alert is sent to the relevant staff, giving the restaurateur the chance to learn about the problem and put it right on the spot before lasting damage might be done.

And there’s more

Other game changers that Aloha brings to your restaurant include stock control to give you accurate purchase forecasts, automated ordering and extensive management reporting; labour control to allocate resources efficiently; and fraud detection to minimise most restaurant scams.

Still think that point of sale software begins and ends at the till? Think again.

Aloha restaurant point of sale software: Not so much a cash till, more a way of life

Here are three of the latest restaurants who have signed up for the Aloha experience.

Rola Wala

Rola Wala (the name means ‘the man that rolls’ in Hindi) serves what the owners call twisted Indian street food. It began in the back streets and on the beaches of India, arrived on the streets and in the marketplaces of London and finally opened as a restaurant in Leeds.

With the restaurant planned as the start of what will soon be a chain, the owners installed Aloha, not just for the start-up but to see them through future expansion plans.

“When you are at the start of a growing business, there’s little point in using software that will need to be replaced when the chain gets to ten or more sites,” says NFS Chief Executive Officer Luis De Souza. “Ambitious enterprises like Rola Wala need a solution that can be relied on to not just serve them at the start of their plans, but to grow with their business as it expands.”

Bubba Gump

This chain of seafood restaurants, whose catering experience is inspired by the 1994 film Forest Gump, is committed to providing a casual environment where everyone can enjoy a great meal and have fun too. The first Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. Restaurant and Market opened in 1996 in Monterey, California. Since then, the chain of seafood restaurants has spread to multiple locations throughout the USA and around the world.

Now Bubba Gump has come to the UK with the first of the chain opening in The Trocadero Centre close to London’s Leicester Square and with more planned across the country soon.
The decision to install Aloha was based on previous knowledge of the software.

“With the essence of Bubba Gump’s experience being food is the hero, our continued aim is to provide a casual dining environment where everyone can enjoy a great meal and have some fun,” explains Operations Manager Chris van Tatenhove.

“To ensure this philosophy is maintained across all our restaurants, new and existing, takes not only precision management and dedicated staff, but also a high performance software management platform. I knew from previous operations roles that Aloha would fit the bill perfectly and we are instantly seeing the benefits, with a constant eye on the reporting capabilities to enable us to continue to deliver to the core values of Bubba Gump as more restaurants open across the UK.”

Dishoom

Dishoom draws upon the heritage and tradition of the old Bombay or Irani cafés, with an all-day menu paying homage to the food of the region. At 9,000 square feet, the latest branch to open in London’s King’s Cross is the chain’s largest restaurant and bar, seating 250 in the main restaurant and 92 more in the bar.

“When we decided to move into a Victorian industrial building in this historically important fragment of London, we took our designers, with us to Bombay,” explains Dishoom’s co-owners Shamil and Kavi Thakrar. “There, we spent many days visiting the remaining Irani cafés, researching late 19th and early 20th Century history, and understanding the design and architecture of some of the places that are still intact that would have set the tone for early 20th Century Bombay.

“Dishoom’s philosophy is steeped in the traditional values of Bombay, bringing the culture, vibe and eating styles to London and we are really thrilled with how it has been received,” comments Head of Operations Brian Trollip.

“However, with growth, we have to be careful not to lose this essence, which takes intensive management control and focused mobility. Aloha has proven to be a powerful standalone POS software solution that provides all the information and more to ensure the smooth running of our cafés. We especially like the link with social media so we can see all the feedback from our loyal customer base.”

To find out more about Aloha Point of Sale Software, NFS Technology Group, its range of hospitality solutions and how NFS can help you run your business better, click here

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