Recently I see more and more of a crazy thing going on.
Small business owners that don’t do their research trying to use a CHEAP retail pos system in a restaurant.
I understand that before we had compute r POS systems restaurants would use a 10 key register to calculate the bills, and that same register would be used in a retail location to ring up the price of items being purchased, BUT with restaurant pos systems being developed, becoming mainstream and common, using a retail pos system makes little to no sense.
A retail POS system is driven by a keyboard and barcode scanner i.e. keyboard entry. When you scan a barcode your are just typing in a product code but in a faster manner then using your fingers.
Food items prepared in a restaurant don’t have barcodes, there is nothing to type in or scan when someone buys something. In order to use a retail pos system that doesn’t have touch screen capabilities the server will be walking up to the pos system and typing in the name of the part number for the item being purchased. So not only will a new server have to memorize a menu but they will also have to memorize menu item part numbers.
That is just crazy, why make your staff do something so silly because you the business owner bought the wrong software.
Some retail software has on-screen item look up so in that case you could use that retail software for the restaurant right? I still wouldn’t because retail software has no way to print kitchen tickets so in order to print something for the kitchen to use you either have to close out the sale and hand over a copy of the receipt to the kitchen (which has extra lines and items on it that kitchens don’t need to see like prices and advertising.) or have your servers hand write kitchen tickets which just neglected one of the main reasons to get point of sale software in the first place (efficiency).
Additionally your wait staff is going to be really upset with you if your retail software is incapable of printing a gratuity line. Think about how much of their income is dependent on tips and if the pos software can’t print a tip line then a large percentage of patrons that don’t have cash on hand are just not going to leave any kind of tip.
Point of Sale systems are tools for your business, but like any tool make sure your using it for the job that it was intended for. Don’t use a screw driver when you need a hammer and don’t use a hammer when you need a screw driver.