Restaurant Bookkeeping – How To Help Your Restaurant To Succeed


Running a restaurant can be an exciting opportunity for business owners, but it can come with an extensive to-do list, especially when it comes to your finances. Looking after your books is an important part of running a restaurant, but it can feel like an overwhelming task, especially if you’ve never done it before.


Restaurant management is all about margin management and being on top of your key performance indicators at all times. You need good bookkeeping software and the right processes to achieve this. Do you know what percentage your wages are running at compared to sales? What is your gross profit for the week, month or quarter? Are you achieving your target gross profit on your best selling items? To make things easier, there are a few things to consider when it comes to your restaurant bookkeeping.


Software As Flexible As You

When it comes to tracking your cash flow and expenses, you need accounting software to help streamline the whole process. One of the top reasons restaurants close down is poorly-managed accounts. With income and expenses happening regularly on a daily basis, it’s important to have a clear idea of how your restaurant is running.


When you’re looking for bookkeeping software, you need one that is as flexible as your restaurant. There are plenty of changes that may occur on a daily basis, so having software that can keep up with you is important.


You also want software that is easy to use. There is no point in choosing an accounting software that is difficult to use and will take months or years to understand properly. When choosing your accounting software, choose one that you can hit the ground running with. Whether you do a short course to understand it completely, have a specialised advisor go to your restaurant and train you or whether you learn how to use it the through a demonstration, it must be something that is easy for you to use on a daily basis.

Having software that is able to be accessed anywhere at any time is also important. Having online access to your accounts means that you can check on your account when it is convenient for you. Whether you’re on your smartphone after you get home from work or whether you’re on a laptop in the kitchen, having an online accounting software will help make your life a lot easier.


Stay Competitive

When you are just starting out in the restaurant industry, it can be a rather daunting process when deciding on your pricing. One thing you will need to consider is the cost of your overheads and your ingredients to help determine the price of your meals. However, you will also need to stay competitive with other restaurants in your local area. Bringing your menu prices down to bring in new customers isn’t a bad idea. However, you also don’t want to set your prices too low and end up losing money. If you have good bookkeeping software, you’ll be able to estimate meal prices and make an informed decision on any price changes you may make.


With good bookkeeping and kitchen management software, you’ll be able to have a clear understanding of how your business is running and what changes can be made to your pricing.


Account For All Receipts

As hard as it may seem, running a restaurant means that you will need to keep a close eye on all of your receipts. When you have regular suppliers, they will bill you in the usual way and you’ll be able to take note of all of these expenses easily. However, in the restaurant industry, there are going to be times when you may need to make an emergency purchase. For example, you may have a large group of people come into your restaurant and they all choose the same dish. This might mean that you run low on a particular ingredient and will need to purchase more in an emergency. But no matter what, you need to make sure you record everything that you buy. Processing all of your receipts so that you’re not out of pocket when it comes to tax time is crucial. Whether it’s an extra bottle of milk or a bag of sugar from the local supermarket, make sure you keep all of your receipts and process them all into your bookkeeping software.


Restaurants are also known for having high data entry requirements. There are lots of invoices from many different suppliers and they are usually ‘mixed GST’. This means that there are GST FREE and GST components which need to be broken down and entered correctly to ensure that you are compliant with the ATO. You do not want to pay more or less GST than you are meant to.


Make Record Keeping A Part Of Your Routine

In the same way that you will prepare food before you open your doors, you need to ensure that bookkeeping for your restaurant becomes a part of your routine habits. Although it may seem like an overwhelming task and not particularly something that is of interest to you, it could mean the difference between great success and having to close your doors for good. Updating your financial records is a huge part of running a restaurant. It will ensure that you have a clear picture of where your business is heading and will help you to see any large discrepancies in your numbers before they become problematic. Tracking everything from inventory through to creating a profit and loss statement at the end of every month can help you to stay on the ball when it comes to running your restaurant.


Hire A Bookkeeper

If you really want to focus on running your business, let a bookkeeper handle your finances for you. Hiring a professional bookkeeper means that you can focus on what you do best while a bookkeeper can give you a clear understanding of how your business is running for you. They’ll be able to provide you with all the information you need to keep on track with your finances.

If you’re looking for a bookkeeper in the Brisbane region, getting touch with Diverse Business Consultants. We are Xero certified advisors and can help train you and your staff to use Xero in the workforce. Alternatively, we can handle everything for you. If you’re a restaurant owner looking to streamline your finances, get in contact with us today.