There are three main facets of future growth within the QSR industry: financial growth, rooftop/acquisition growth (scalability), and brand diversification. To achieve growth within these areas, operators must make educated business decisions backed by accurate data points. Growth strategies have changed vastly since the beginning of the pandemic, and operators have found themselves catapulted into the world of various technology stacks. The most successful operators have found ways to leverage technology to help reduce costs and improve efficiencies across the board; especially, within labor management at the store and home-office levels. The capabilities in the market that offer consolidation of technology systems to reduce IT costs/management time, decrease human error in data transmission, and streamline reporting are significant players in the game of growth and success. This post will look into each QSR growth facet and determine how technology can support its development.
How operators can use technology for financial growth
Automation and technology’s most considerable financial impact comes first from an operator reviewing their current systems and dissecting out where they can consolidate those systems into one holistic view, versus taking on more systems and, therefore, trying to manage more. Having a holistic system will directly influence the financial health of a franchise through 3 areas:
Automation speeds up the time it takes to create reports and financial statements, clarifying where an operator’s opportunities may lie. Additionally, it provides faster insights into the business, providing management teams with direction on where they need to spend their time. Equally as necessary, automated tech enables management teams the flexibility to act more quickly on profitable business decisions, whether that’s concerning labor, COGS, or other influential facets of the restaurant.
How Franchisees have scaled themselves through the use of technology innovation
Automation enables operators the opportunity to focus on managing the parts of the business that can directly affect revenue and the guest experience. Instead of hiring, training, and recreating new systems related to growth, technology offers the operator more time to become highly active within the actual operations. This ensures that each guest receives a great experience while allowing the operator the ability to effectively manage the metrics/KPI’s that they deem most important for the business.
As franchisees are looking to build more locations or make acquisitions, they’re evaluating all the different technologies already in use within each location. Understanding what additional technology they’re going to add and essentially consolidate is crucial for efficiency. Operators need to ask:
- Can they work with fewer vendors?
- Can they ensure multiple systems talk to each other across store levels?
When operators are finding bits and pieces about their business from fragmented systems, they never truly get the complete picture, which ultimately prevents them from being as successful as they should be.
How proven technology systems can assist existing Franchisees to grow into new brands
Throughout 2020, there were substantial impacts on how restaurants operated. Several emerging brands have established themselves quite well – from focusing on takeout/delivery to drive-thru, countless franchisees are stretching their legs in new restaurant concepts or service styles as the opportunities arise.
Selecting a third party that has experience working with different POS systems, knows how to translate data for an operator, and is familiar with a brand’s KPIs is a vital leg-up when an operator is expanding into a new brand. It’s crucial that there’s no downtime implementing new systems and that the team can have immediate and direct insights into the KPIs for the new brand. The consumption of raw data, merging different information points from multiple concepts or locations, and having that output from a financial perspective, enables operators to manage numerous concepts while still drilling into individual store performance.
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