Andrew Simmons Story Update 1-17-2023

First, it’s been a good solid month using Toast at the restaurant. The good, the bad and the ugly. Spoiler alert: no ugly, and not really anything bad. We went live on a Friday night after coming off of Square for Restaurants. Menu updates on the fly were a breeze; re-configuring how the KDS, the printers and re-routing specific items to different make lines; and waitstaff adoption was surprisingly easy. What I love most about it (and there’s a lot to love) is the reporting, and even in the first month of using it, there was actionable data I could use to determine restaurant operations.

For example, we offer dine-in 7 days a week. With my last POS, I wasn’t completely sure if we were making money every day of the week. Being able to see food cost, labor, income and profit made the picture very clear. As a result, this last week we cut back to dining Thursday through Sunday for the foreseeable future. That in turn cut labor cost from the bottom line.

We also implemented Incentivio for our popular Pizza subscription program. My account manager Michael Gary seems to work the same weird hours I do, so I was able to work on the integration; the app; and the rules at all hours of the night to get it out on time. Currently, we’ve had 897 possible redemptions this month, with only 335 done redeemed. Some of our customers have said they only plan to redeem every other week. As we get more data, we’ll share the results. Other tech we are adding comes from OvationMarqii and Davo by Avalara.

Equipment-wise, our DoughXPress failed when it came to producing volume pie blanks for the Picnic Pizza Press. I got a great recommendation from another pizzeria for a Cuppone pizza press, and it just arrived today. I’ll be testing it and sharing my results early next month. I added more Toast hardware for our new retail storefront going into the restaurant; we’re making fresh craft pasta for our dine-in side. Had a setback on our new Hot Rocks oven in regards to the hood needed, and that cost may exceed our ability to add it to our tech stack. I’m looking for options just in case, so if anyone has some recommendations for a deck oven that can handle volume, DM me.

As always, if you want to come visit and see my tech stack in operation at the restaurant, just reach out. Unvarnished views on everything, and hopefully some of what I’m doing can help you not have to reinvent the wheel…

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