Running a restaurant is not as simple as taking orders, preparing the food and collecting payment. There are many processes at play, and each process will usually require an individual system in place as support. As a business owner, managing these various systems well is vital to run a restaurant efficiently. However, these mundane tasks like tallying the accounts, inventory tracking and employee scheduling takes up a lot of time. Every business owner will agree: in the restaurant business, time is essence.
This is where the automation of each of these processes come into play. An integrated system can help the employees and staff of the restaurant save a chunk of time which can be dedicated to handling more serious issues, while saving a lot of money at the same time. According to a 2014 industry report by Software Advice, 61% of restaurants are now looking only for fully integrated point-of-sale (POS) solutions that manage everything from online ordering to detailed financial reporting. 
Orca Integrated Business Operating System, better known as OrcaBOS, is a tablet-based service that is integrated with other applications such as Xero, a small business accounting software and a remote ordering system named Mobi2Go, to help F&B Business owner manage their business better. Here’s how a having a fully integrated Business Operating System like OrcaBOS can help your business thrive.
1. Improve Staff Service and Efficiency
Good service is the cornerstone of every business. Often in a traditional brick and mortar restaurant, there are grievances about the wait time and the service provided by staff. While this is not always the case, the level of service provided is often due to the service staff having too many tasks assigned to them, especially during peak restaurant hours. OrcaBOS plays a vital role in helping the manager delegate tasks among the staff, and to optimize the available manpower in the restaurant at any given time.
The accuracy of an integrated business operating system has helped decrease the time taken to serve and increase the efficiency of the order process. With integration of these systems, information can be easily updated in real time. OrcaBOS allows for the reducing of wrong table servings and more efficient wait staff, while kitchen staff will be able to minimalize order mistakes. It can also help to serve as a display check list for the kitchen to accurately see the orders coming in, even if there are any changes.
2. Optimize Staff Manpower for Better Time Management
Miscommunication is one of the key factors which would affect the service flow in a restaurant. Whether it is the communication breakdown between the kitchen staff and the wait staff, or even a simple issue such as a mistaken order, the service of a restaurant will effectively grind to a halt. Slow service make customers impatient and ultimately hurt business.
With the OrcaBOS system in place, these issues can all be resolved. For example; staff will be able to track the total time needed to serve each table, from the kitchen to the serving. The e-Waiter service allows waiters to track things happening in the kitchen without them having to run back and forth. This is an especially good service to reduce customer complaints on the speed of the service.
Most up to date POS systems often work offline, saving data to be processed once your system is connected again. This means you can keep your lines moving even when the internet is down, which helps to save time and avoid frustration among your customers, and panic among your staff. All these factors will lead to a much more productive and cost efficient business.
3. Integrated Accounting Convenience
One important feature of an integrated POS system is software integration with your accounting operating system. In a survey, the National Small Business Association in the United States cites that time-consuming accounting tasks can take between two and three weeks of full-time work per year. 
With the POS system integrated with your accounting system, your accounts will automatically sync each day to update data—from summary sales to inventory—which eliminates manual data entry and human error, while saving you a lot of valuable time. Further, a restaurant can also save time on training employees by adopting an easy-to-use, all-inclusive system. When you combine these time-saving benefits with the convenience of a cloud-based system, your restaurant business becomes that much more productive.
4. Cut Down on Inventory Wastage
With an integrated business operating system, points of wastage in daily operations and inventory data can be discovered through operation optimization, leading to money saved. The data gathered from OrcaBOS, especially from real-time inventory tracking and inventory management, can be used to your restaurant’s advantage, especially in terms of making critical marketing decisions.
For instance, if the data shows the restaurant is losing money on shipping costs, you can use the data from the POS system figures to decipher which items require less stock so you can consolidate shipping processes, which will help with cutting down on wastage and in turn, save money. The data received also translates to knowing the better selling items on the menu, which allows for you to plan on which item to remove or promote, cutting down on wastage.
5. Formulate Data-driven Marketing Strategies
The data can also be used to determine your restaurant’s marketing strategy; such as looking at how efforts like staying open an extra hour or raising prices can affect your restaurant’s profit and loss statements. The data will also look at typical customer spending habits in the restaurant, allowing you to keep track of the popularity of each item in the menu, leading to sales optimization of your menu items. You will also be able to track the effectiveness of every promotion running, which will in turn help to plan better marketing strategies to be used in the future.
With this data in hand, you will have all the information you need to keep a pulse on your business numbers and customer buying preferences based on numbers and figures, and allow you to leverage that data to drive sales. With these figures in hand, your business will be able to justify opening new franchise branches with the firm knowledge of what works and what doesn’t.
6. Prevent Operations Fraud
According to a National Restaurant Association study in 2013, internal employee theft in the United States accounts for 75% of inventory shortages and 4% of sales, a staggering figure . Most of these thefts are done through the irregularities in payments, such as cancellations and any voided transactions or payments. With these figures, the need to prevent theft should be a priority for any restaurant owner.
With an integrated business operating system in place, the task of tracking irregularities with the cancellations and voids, as well as any other activities that could be seen as suspicious is made so much easier. For example, if an employee is cancelling items from customer bills and pocketing the difference for themselves, OrcaBOS will be able to keep track of this, and the manager will be able to take the appropriate actions.
Further, as OrcaBOS is a tablet-based service, there is no longer a need to use paper to print the menu or order catalogues, leading to a more environmental friendly business.
As consumers increasingly go mobile, so too must business owners. Restaurants need to have an up-to-date POS system like OrcaBOS, that is compatible with the latest technology that allows them to work more efficiently. This tends to open more capabilities on both the operations side, including kitchen efficiency and better intelligence, ensuring that restaurant sales and operations can be optimized. More importantly, having an integrated system will also benefit the customers’ side, with newer methods such as mobile and online ordering, and even more sophisticated features like loyalty programs in place.