Point of sale technology changes quickly, with improvements and new features being introduced regularly. It covers a lot of territory too, as the technology has gradually been applied to other functions, such as inventory and employee management. A must-have restaurant POS features list will go beyond orders and payments to warning you when inventory runs low, clocking your employees in and out, and sending an online order out with a delivery service. Finding the right modern POS system can improve your efficiency and save you money.
Choose Your Restaurant POS Features List
Every restaurant is different, and so is its food. Every restaurant will use its POS system a little differently from the others as well. You have to know what is available to choose the right options for your restaurant. Here are the most important features to be on the lookout for in a POS system.
Let’s start with the basics. Cloud computing allows you to take advantage of the latest and most powerful software there is without buying or maintaining the complex hardware that makes it run. Thanks to the cloud, you can work remotely by logging in to any of your programs from any device, as your data are not on your hardware. You enjoy the current standard of protection and authentication against hacking, a far smaller likelihood of crashes, and all the convenience of a modern digital system.
Mobility is one of the biggest benefits of cloud computing, and one that can be harnessed by restaurants in particular. The ability to work remotely is a popular feature with managers who have to keep an eye on more than one location simultaneously. You can do what you need to—manage staff, inventory, and prices, and track sales figures or anything else—on your smartphone from home or on the go as easily as if you were in your office at the restaurant.
Mobility for the wait staff
Your wait staff and kitchen staff can use this feature equally. By equipping the wait staff with networked iPads, orders appear instantly on your kitchen display system (KDS) or at the bar. Only you know the best way to organize your kitchen and communications with it though, so look for a system that is highly customizable in this component. You can also include options to accommodate dietary restrictions.
An iPad POS can also accept payment on the floor. People—even managers and workers—tend to forget how complex pricing can be in a restaurant. Your POS system will face happy hours, daily specials, complimentary drinks without ever letting one slip, and accept:
- gift cards
- group rates
- loyalty programs
Wait staff can split bills and accept multiple payment types or even split items at the table with a mobile POS.
One of the most valuable management tools you have is the ability to get a bird’s eye view of the floor and watch operations in real-time. This allows you to streamline the dining experience with faster seating, streamlined table assignments, moving orders, and other basic functions that have to be carried out promptly.
Staff management and reporting
You can plan your staffing better when your POS system provides you with information on staff performance. You can see when your employees clock in and out, as well as their individual sales and tips on a digital POS system. This ensures that you not only have coverage at all times, but that you have reliable coverage during peak hours and other rushes. It lets you make staffing decisions based on real results and makes it possible for you to set employee permissions—payment overrides, inventory adjustments, sales figures, and similar responsibilities—individually.
Inventory and price control
Monitoring in real time what and how much inventory you have in stock can prevent embarrassment and diner dissatisfaction. A digital POS system can do this and more. It can also warn you when stock is running low, automatically generate orders to suppliers and check in new stock when it comes. This includes tracking the sales and stocking of beverages. You can track the popularity of items and price them accordingly, and you can adjust menu prices in response to excess inventory or rising market prices.
Payment options are plentiful in today’s world. It makes good business sense to support as many of them as possible. This means your POS system has to shift back and forth among payment methods, as well as devices. For tableside payment, the POS iPad should be able to process EMV cards and accept contactless smartphone apps, and even record cash payments.
Your POS system should be able to integrate with a web of services using APIs. Besides payment systems, you may have a CRM and a QuickBooks account that can integrate with the POS. Given the new emphasis on online ordering, you will probably partner with at least one delivery service as well.
A website and online ordering
A POS system with internet capacity is a benefit because it ensures a solid, reliable online ordering component. You may choose to do much more with your website in addition to (or instead of) online ordering, but the need for online ordering has grown astronomically and will almost certainly remain high. A user-friendly online system should:
- accept orders
- confirm their completeness, including payment option
- forward the order to the KDS
If you offer curbside pickup, mobile iPads are a necessity.
Real-time reporting is a big help for managing on the spot. That record of activities is equally valuable after the fact, thanks to the information and insight that can be derived from it. You can determine the popularity and profitability of individual menu items, recurring problems with items or staff, or the profitability of the business in general using information gathered by your POS system. You can use this information to improve the management of your restaurant and increase its profits.
Get a Modern POS for Your Restaurant
This restaurant POS features list may have reminded you of some features you wish you had. It should also capture the breadth of the cloud-based POS system. A modern POS system can make a difference in every aspect of running a restaurant. In addition to these features, look for a POS system that is customizable and has excellent around-the-clock customer service.
The talech restaurant POS features list has over 100 features that can be customized to suit the way your restaurant is run. If you would like to find out more about what a talech POS can do for your restaurant, contact us to set up a free demo, and we will show you in detail.