What's a good shift?

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nvb
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2005/07/08 16:25:50 (permalink)

What's a good shift?

I've always looked at the register total for each shift to decide if I've had a good or bad day. I was discussing this with another owner in a neighboring town and she counted the number of plates served to decide.

What do you look at?
#1

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    aleone
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    RE: What's a good shift? 2005/07/08 16:34:38 (permalink)
    I think you should look at the number of people you serve. You should look at the register total to determine if your staff is doing their job.
    #2
    Caramel Copper
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    RE: What's a good shift? 2005/07/08 16:39:38 (permalink)
    Slick,
    I've never owned one but ran a few for others. When the boss called he/she always wanted to know the $.
    HTH,
    Copper
    #3
    nvb
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    RE: What's a good shift? 2005/07/08 16:54:38 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by aleone

    I think you should look at the number of people you serve. You should look at the register total to determine if your staff is doing their job.


    I have an idea of the money I need to run during a shift in order to know if I made a profit, and I kinda think it's more difficult to tell that by counting plates. Fifty sandwich plates do not produce the same profit margin as with 50 pork chop plates or chicken-fried steak dinners. This is why I look at the totals.
    #4
    Scallion1
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    RE: What's a good shift? 2005/07/08 18:32:06 (permalink)
    I must be missing something. I've been doing this stuff for years, and can't figure out why anyone would look at anything besides the register readings.

    That being said, it doesn't necessarily tell you how much you made, of course, only how much you grossed. You're a lot better selling $2,000 worth of coffee or fountain syrup than $2,000 worth of fresh turkey breast.

    #5
    nvb
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    RE: What's a good shift? 2005/07/08 22:10:37 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by Scallion1

    That being said, it doesn't necessarily tell you how much you made, of course, only how much you grossed. You're a lot better selling $2,000 worth of coffee or fountain syrup than $2,000 worth of fresh turkey breast.


    Yeah, but I couldn't convince her of that.:shrug:
    #6
    bassrocker4u2
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    RE: What's a good shift? 2005/07/09 08:21:37 (permalink)
    plate counting has good uses. but first, other practices must be in place. for instance, if you are checking up on a suspected server(shrewd stealer), you must first have a properly trained host(ess). in this case you are comparing plates(paid for) to heads(in the door), and even specifically to sections of dining room, and servers.
    in some formulas(pnl,daily,monthly,weekly reports), the average customer expenditure is consistant, thereby allowing the manager/owner to use plate counting as a quick and quite accurate method of calculating present status of sales and labor cost. the formula may determine that 5 plates will cover one man hour of labor(also using formulated average). by a quick plate count, and simple math, one can determine if labor is running too high, or to low. tons of other things can be determined quickly by a simple plate count.
    i have used plate counting for years, and its very efficient and fast.
    #7
    Scallion1
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    RE: What's a good shift? 2005/07/09 10:43:59 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by bassrocker4u2

    plate counting has good uses. but first, other practices must be in place. for instance, if you are checking up on a suspected server(shrewd stealer), you must first have a properly trained host(ess). in this case you are comparing plates(paid for) to heads(in the door), and even specifically to sections of dining room, and servers.
    in some formulas(pnl,daily,monthly,weekly reports), the average customer expenditure is consistant, thereby allowing the manager/owner to use plate counting as a quick and quite accurate method of calculating present status of sales and labor cost. the formula may determine that 5 plates will cover one man hour of labor(also using formulated average). by a quick plate count, and simple math, one can determine if labor is running too high, or to low. tons of other things can be determined quickly by a simple plate count.
    i have used plate counting for years, and its very efficient and fast.


    i will respectfully defer to da rocker, as i've never done it this way. only time i ever count plates is in catering work, where i do it before service so that i can see how my food supply is looking, in real time, against the remaining number of guests.

    as far as checking on the shrewd server (mostly, in my experience, an oxymoron, but that's just an old chef snarling), i've posted before that the critical point is that nothing comes off the line into a server's hands without a dupe, regardless of whatever system you use.
    it's hard for the floor to steal, at least in this area, if you run a tight kitchen. unless, of course, there's some collusion between a cook and a server, but then you don't have a tight kitchen.

    i guess that your friend the plate counter must run an operation with a limited number of tabletop variables. most of my experience has been in restaurants where there were a number of different size and style plates, on the one hand, and where a rack of lamb could be served on the same plate as a chicken breast.

    if you're running a small, hands-on operation, you can watch this stuff hour by hour. the bigger the place, and the further you, the owner, are from the actual firing line, the more rigorous a system you need.

    one last note: when i was a restaurant chef, and i've run some fairly large places, i usually could guess pretty accurately how many covers we'd done in a service. after a while, if i was in my office, out of sight but not earshot of the kitchen, i could come close just by listening to the sound of the kitchen. but there's absolutely nothing to take the place of reviewing the dupes after each shift, and doing a quick inventory of the walkin box. the more you do this stuff the less time it takes, and the better you'll get at it. you *must* catch funny business asap. finding out a month later that your food cost is out of line is an expensive way to keep an eye on your money.
    #8
    Caramel Copper
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    RE: What's a good shift? 2005/07/09 13:04:26 (permalink)
    Speaking of inventory....
    As a manager (small potatoes) I was required to count alcohol & soda weekly....cigs three times a day, and merch (food) once a month. It was a pain to count food but after several perfect audits I learned the value of count, and began to count food weekly.

    Copper

    Just a thought...


    #9
    Scallion1
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    RE: What's a good shift? 2005/07/09 14:05:06 (permalink)
    creativity also counts. figure out how to inventory whatever items might be vulnerable. a buddy of mine owns a couple of pizza joints. he works about three hours a day. comes in every morning, counts the balls of dough, counts the cans of soda and the sleeves of cups and he's done. granted, this is an extremely thin market basket, but it works for him. don't waste time counting salt or crackers.
    #10
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