Operations management trends change with regularity, but they are always relevant. The work of a restaurant or fast-food franchisee is constant; it is never done. There are the immediate needs — managing costs and fees, training staff, and improving products and services.
Then there is the long game. How do you keep your customers happy and coming back? How do you find and retain the best employees? How do you ensure that your franchise stays ahead of the curve, both in terms of operations and management?
Franchisees have a lot on their plates, which is why it’s important to stay up-to-date on the latest operations management trends. Here are five trends that restaurant and fast-food franchisees should be aware of.
- Inventory management
- Data analytics
- Labor cost reduction
- Food cost reduction
- Scaling production to demand
Read on for a closer look at each of these operations management trends and what they mean for franchisees today.
Inventory management is critical for any business, but it’s especially important for franchisees. That’s because inventory directly impacts your bottom line. Too much inventory ties up capital that could be used elsewhere, while too little can lead to lost sales and unhappy customers.
The goal of inventory management is to strike the perfect balance between these two extremes. That means having the right amount of inventory on hand at all times — no more, no less.
There are a number of ways to achieve this goal, but one of the most effective is data analytics. By tracking sales data over time, you can get a better understanding of customer demand and adjust your inventory levels accordingly.
Data analytics is a hot topic in the business world, and for good reason. Data provides insights that can be used to make better decisions, improve operations, and boost profits.
For franchisees, data analytics can be a valuable tool for inventory management (as we just discussed), but it can also be used for marketing, customer service, and product development.
There are endless possibilities when it comes to data analytics, so it’s important to focus on the areas that will have the biggest impact on your business. Talk to your franchisor about what data they collect and how you can use it to improve your operations. You should also consider investing in partnership with a company like GSE to do your data gathering and analysis for you. We specialize in energy, lighting, and gas/utility management, along with refrigeration and kitchen equipment monitoring.
Labor Cost Reduction
Labor costs are a major expense for any business, but they can be especially high in the restaurant and fast-food industries. That’s why reducing labor costs is a top priority for many franchisees.
There are a number of ways to reduce labor costs, but it’s important to do so without compromising the quality of your products or services. One way to achieve this is by using data analytics to track employee productivity and identify areas where efficiency can be improved.
You can also use data analytics to schedule employees more effectively. By understanding customer demand patterns, you can make sure you have the right number of employees working at the right times. This will help you avoid overstaffing (which leads to higher labor costs).
Food Cost Reduction
Food costs are another major expense for franchisees, so it’s important to find ways to reduce them. One way to do this is by negotiating better deals with suppliers. But you can also save money by reducing food waste.
According to a study by the National Restaurant Association, food waste accounts for about 10 percent of a restaurant’s total food costs. That means there’s a lot of room for improvement in this area.
There are a number of ways to reduce food waste, but one of the most effective is portion control. By monitoring portion sizes and adjusting them as needed, you can make sure your customers are getting what they want without leaving behind a lot of unfinished plates.
You can also use operations management to reduce food waste. For example, you can implement a “first in, first out” policy to make sure the oldest food is used first.. With GSE’s walk-in temperature monitoring system, the automated alerts will let you know about high temps to service critical equipment immediately, and avoid food spoilage.
Scaling Production to Demand
As a franchisee, one of your main goals is to grow your business. But as you expand, it’s important to scale your operations so that they can meet the demand of your growing customer base.
If you don’t scale properly, you could end up with too much or too little inventory, which can lead to lost sales and unhappy customers. You might also have trouble meeting customer demand if your production process can’t keep up with the growth of your business.
To avoid these problems, it’s important to use data analytics to track customer demand and adjust your operations accordingly. This will help you avoid over- or underproduction, and it will ensure that your customers are always happy.
Operations Management Trends for Franchisees and Why They Matter
Embracing any and all of these trends will result in long-term franchise growth and better margins. GSE can help with operations management trends for franchisees — we are ready and waiting.
Contact us to learn more about how we can help you improve your operations and achieve your goals.