Why You Need a Restaurant Virtual Assistant

February 28, 2023

Why Do You Want a Restaurant Virtual Assistant In the Kitchen?

It’s not an overstatement to say that managing a restaurant is challenging. Not only do you have to keep track of what’s going on on the ground in real-time during fast-paced food serving, but you also have to monitor things in the background, such as the finances and supplies. Perhaps a restaurant virtual assistant is what you need to simplify your life.

Restaurant Virtual Assistant

Virtual assistants, or VAs, are remote employees with specific skill sets that provide you and your business with administrative aid. They can help you manage the background aspects of the business so you can keep more focused and lead at the forefront, or take some time off yourself.

Below are some reasons you should consider for hiring a restaurant virtual assistant for your business.

They Provide Administrative Aid

Aside from particular jobs that require certifications to perform, a virtual assistant can handle most of the administrative work to keep your restaurant running.

Since running a restaurant business with multiple staff can make the administrative part of handling a business burdensome, you can delegate administrative responsibilities to your virtual assistant. A VA’s administrative specialties include answering and making phone calls, data entry, mail organization and management, and more.

Additionally, now that you have a virtual assistant to handle general administrative tasks, you will have more time to focus on building your business.

Rather than spending time and resources on day-to-day operations yourself, you may use them to think strategically about the firm in the long run. This free time allows you to define goals that drive your company’s performance and long-term development.

A Restaurant Virtual Assistant can Manage Your Website and Social Media

You can build a following and create leads with excellent social media and website management, but this can be time-consuming for a full-time restaurant owner or manager.

Fortunately, you can ask your virtual assistant to update your website, write blogs, and create social media posts while you directly connect with your audience or generate leads at a client’s house or event.

A gleaming website and active social feed are critical elements for attracting new customers, and your virtual assistant can help your company keep the voice and following you want.

They Can Handle Bookkeeping

Keeping track of incoming and departing finances can be time-consuming. You and your employees are already preoccupied with meal preparation, meal planning, deliveries, and inventory management.

You can let your VA handle the bookkeeping to free up your time for more critical tasks. They can send and archive invoices. They can also send individual reminders to clients who have not yet paid.

They Can Manage Your Projects

Although positive criticism and improvements can provide a more efficient process for your company, business managers working on multiple tasks at once can tunnel their vision and lose sight of the bigger picture.

You can ask your VA to examine business data to aid your restaurant business. From this examination, they can craft project proposals and spearhead their execution. The overall process can save you time and money since you’ll have to oversee the entire project rather than do it all alone.

Alternatively, using inventory management software or an AI in a supply chain, you can automate your business data examination and workflow.

What is an AI in a supply chain, you ask? Essentially, the focus of AI in supply chain optimization should be on finding solutions to problems that affect business. Production planning, demand forecasting, inventory management, routing, dynamic pricing, fraud detection, and quality control are a few examples of these difficulties.

They Can Keep Track of Your Schedule

Maintaining your schedule might be as hard as working. Allowing your VA to handle your hectic schedule will keep you from forgetting things and checking when you can squeeze in emergency appointments.

Your VA can also assist with setting up and managing online or phone bookings. You can ask them to send reminders as the event dates approach to ensure you prepare better for the engagements.

Your virtual assistant can also keep track of the equipment and meal plans you’ll need for the day. They can pre-arrange shopping delivery, ensuring that you have everything you need. This is especially useful for cultural holidays when you require unique ingredients for specific holiday dishes.

They Can Handle Your Emails

Clients, both prospects and onboarded, have questions, and most of the time, they have lots of those; do you have time to answer them all? If you’re wise, you will delegate them to your virtual assistant!

Your restaurant virtual assistant may respond to all basic comments and questions on your behalf, prepare templates for frequently asked questions, forward more complex emails & comments to you for review, and even create and spearhead entire email marketing campaigns for you.

Additionally, email marketing is still one of the best marketing strategies. A regular schedule of effectively crafted marketing emails can convert leads into long-term customers, which is always beneficial in keeping your restaurant afloat.

They Can Lessen Your Overall Operational Cost

Instead of engaging a full-time employee to accomplish a minor task, you can employ a virtual assistant. You’ll only have to pay for work they performed because they usually charge hourly or by commission.

Furthermore, because they operate remotely, you won’t have to pay for overhead costs such as their internet connection, laptop, or other office space-related charges.

Hiring a VA can also help you save money on training expenses. Consider this: when you hire a first-time employee, you must invest significant time and resources in educating them in various areas of their position.

However, with virtual assistants, you won’t have to worry about training them because they can work on specific and general jobs they already excel, enabling them to begin working immediately.


You may have already realized by now that a virtual assistant for your restaurant business may perform almost any activity you can think of. They provide excellent administrative help by giving them all the tasks you don’t want or don’t have time to complete.

At the end of the day, managing your restaurant still falls on you. It’s up to you to hire a well-trained virtual assistant that inevitably comes at a steeper price or train them on your own as part of your general workforce.

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Cut Back on Food Waste: Tips for Restaurants to Save Money on Food Waste

February 13, 2023

Cut Back on Food Waste: Top Tips for Restaurant Owners to Get More Bang for Their Buck

Restaurants are in the business of giving guests a great time out. The food they provide during that experience is just a bonus. When people go out, they want to have a nice time. This involves a great atmosphere, a delicious meal, and a memorable experience with loved ones.

To accomplish this goal, however, restaurants need to operate on a very narrow profit margin. Any waste, no matter whether it is wasted time from an employee standing around doing very little or having food waste itself, is going to cut into that profit margin.

That’s why cutting back on food waste is so critical for restaurant owners and why you need to rethink how you use your ingredients and how to get more bang for your buck.

Food Waste Statistics

Food waste is a growing problem in wealthy nations, one which is a slap in the face in countries facing food shortages. Overall, it’s estimated that one-third of all food produced around the world is wasted every year. This amounts to 1.3 billion tons, all of which could have been used more efficiently with just a little bit of planning. The United States is a huge culprit of food waste as well. It’s estimated that around 40% of food here is thrown out.

control food waste

What does this mean in real terms? In regards to cost, that’s the equivalent of throwing out $218 billion – that’s from food in the US alone. Food waste also produces massive amounts of greenhouse gases. In fact, if food waste was a country, it’d be the third worst polluter in the world.

Restaurants aren’t exempt, either. An estimated 22 to 33 billion lbs of food waste is produced by restaurants each year in the United States. This is due to either the ingredients no longer being acceptable to restaurant standards or because customers don’t finish their plates, and the leftovers have to be thrown out.

Why Restaurant Owners Need to Take a Proactive Approach to Food Waste

Restaurant owners play a critical role in reducing the amount of food waste produced. Unfortunately, the food service industry contributes significantly to the problem, with up to 10% of all food purchased being thrown away uneaten. This not only has an impact on the environment but also results in significant economic losses for your business.

To address this issue, it’s important to understand the root causes of commercial food waste in restaurants. Over-ordering, poor storage practices, and inefficient preparation techniques are some of the main factors that contribute to waste in the food service industry. Additionally, menu planning, portion control, and better use of leftovers can also help to reduce food waste in your restaurant.

By taking a proactive approach to reducing food waste, you can improve your bottom line while also helping to protect the environment. Implementing measures such as regular waste audits, menu planning, and staff training can help you to identify areas for improvement and reduce the amount of food waste generated by your restaurant. As a restaurant owner, you have the power to make a positive impact and lead the way in sustainable food practices.

How to Cut Back on Food Waste in Your Restaurant

Cutting back on your food waste offers many benefits, with cost savings the priority for businesses. The good news is that, in this case, what’s good for your bottom line is also good for the planet. Cutting back on food waste means spending less and earning more when you use these top tips:

Reuse Ingredients as Much as Possible Per Meal

The best way to cut back on food waste is to reuse ingredients in as many dishes as possible. This doesn’t mean that you end up offering the same flavors over and over again, just that you remix the base ingredients in new ways to get the most out of your order. This is an essential practice in any restaurant, but workshopping your approach and your menu on an ongoing basis is the best way to find the sweet spot that cuts back on cost and waste.

Use Dried Ingredients

Think fresh is the only way to go? Think again. If you have been struggling with using up all of the fresh ingredients, see if switching to dried works instead. You could use dried spices, from Olam Spices, for example. You can dry ingredients in all forms. Take the example of garlic. You could choose to get garlic in powder form, but if you go to the right supplier, you could opt for chopped, minced, organic, or granulated instead.

This is a good way to add different flavor profiles to dishes without keeping large quantities of ingredients that don’t get used very often and go out of date much faster. You can get that extra strong garlic flavor by using dried minced garlic without needing to store it fresh.

Let Customers Take Food Home

Always offer customers the opportunity to take their leftovers home. This is a simple way to let your customers get more value out of their meals, and it will also reduce how much food waste your restaurant produces on any given day.

Properly Sort Food Waste

If your area collects food waste, you must have your employees throw out food (and only food) into a specialized bin. Food waste collection sends waste to an industrial composter, which cuts back on the emissions produced by food rotting. Instead, it will be given a second life as fertilizer or even as biofuel.

Expand Your Offering

Want to cut back on food waste and boost profits? Sell ingredients to the public. If you’ve created a special spice seasoning mix that’s a huge hit amongst customers, work to start selling that mix out there on the floor. This way, you can use up every grain of your purchase to boost your sales and actually improve customer satisfaction. If customers use your spice mix at home, it’s even free marketing whenever they have guests over!

If you offer fresher products for customers, then a good way to avoid waste is to use a pre-ordering system. You can sell meal kits, for example, ahead of time. Have last order cut-offs and a set pick-up day, so you only prepare what’s actually been sold.

Seal For Freshness

Many ingredients can enjoy a longer lifespan by being properly stored. Your business, for example, could save on food waste by using a vacuum sealer on its fresh ingredients. Storing food in the fridge or freezer in the right containers is also essential. When it comes to storing anything, however, remember to properly label best by dates and regularly re-organize your stores so that food doesn’t get left behind and is used while it’s still good.

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7 Tips for Opening a BBQ Restaurant

7 Smart Tips for Opening Your Own BBQ Restaurant

Nothing soothes the soul quite like juicy, tender cuts of meat smoked to perfection and served up homestyle with your favorite barbecue sauce. Over the years, BBQ has become a staple in American cuisine and a potentially very lucrative market for chefs looking to start a restaurant.

If you are thinking about opening a BBQ restaurant of your own, there are several important factors you should consider to set yourself up for success. Here are 7 tips to help you start a BBQ restaurant that will earn the approval of investors and customers alike, and become a culinary staple in your community for years to come.

bbq lamb rack

1. Do Your Research

Before opening a new restaurant, your first step should be market research. You will want to take inventory of existing BBQ options in your area. If there are already BBQ restaurants around you, there may not be enough demand for another.

During this initial research phase, you will also want to define your target audience and think about how your business can address their needs. Ask yourself questions like: “Who do I envision coming to my restaurant?” and “how can I tap into demographics that are most heavily concentrated in my area?” If you live in a large college town, for instance, you will most likely have a different target audience than you would if you lived in a very rural area, and will want to make different decisions regarding decor, menu, marketing strategies, and more.

2. Find Your Niche

Once you have taken stock of restaurants (BBQ or otherwise) in your area, ask yourself: what’s missing? What can I offer at my restaurant that other nearby restaurants currently lack? Once you’ve identified gaps, you’ll know what you need to do better with your business, to provide the community with options and experiences that they can’t find elsewhere.

You can consider, for example, different regional BBQ methods, and whether you want to offer your customers something familiar or introduce them to dishes they may not have tried before. Popular American BBQ styles include:

  • Carolina
  • Kansas City
  • Memphis
  • Texas

So if you already have a large Texas BBQ presence in your area, it may be smarter to specialize in a different style of BBQ. If there are already a number of large, sit-down BBQ restaurants in your area, you may want to open a faster, less formal alternative. Specialization is key.

3. Location, Location, Location

Another important factor to consider is the location of your restaurant. Because BBQ restaurants are typically family-oriented, it’s smart to open your restaurant near a church, school, theater, shopping mall, or other places where families frequently congregate. You’ll want to choose a restaurant space that has enough room for multiple families to comfortably enjoy a meal without feeling overcrowded.

Strategically choosing a restaurant location also gives you the opportunity to get creative with your business. If there is a farmer’s market in your area, for example, where restaurants consistently offer different types of cuisine, you can capitalize on existing traffic by opening up a small food stand within the market. If you identify a location in your community where there is a vibrant nightlife scene, you may want to consider the logistics of opening up a roadside food stand to serve barhoppers looking for a late-night snack. It’s all about serving the community’s needs and choosing a location that best allows you to do that.

4. Serve a Variety of Quality Dishes

Perhaps the most important factor in attracting and retaining customers at your BBQ restaurant is to produce high-quality food. You’ll want to ensure that your menu has a variety of offerings for people with different food preferences and tastes. If all of your meat is cooked and served with spicy hot sauce, you run the risk of alienating customers who prefer milder flavors, and vice versa. For this reason, you should offer a range of different dishes and a variety of sauces that customers can choose between. Because BBQ restaurants are frequent sites of family gatherings, you’ll also want to ensure there is an adequate kids’ menu.

bbq skewers

To serve your customers high-quality food, it is also essential that you do your research and invest in high-quality, long-lasting BBQ equipment. First-rate kitchen components like a high-quality BBQ grill island can help you serve consistently delicious food during even the most hectic shifts.

5. Have a Solid Business Plan

Creating a comprehensive business plan is crucial for any restaurant owner and a good way to forecast your business’s potential for success. A good business plan should serve as a blueprint for your restaurant, outlining critical details like funding, staffing, procedures, menu theme, and more.

Not only does having a well-thought-out business plan make it easier to manage your finances, account for potential business pitfalls, and plan for your restaurant’s future, but it also makes your restaurant much more attractive to investors. Not having a well-developed business plan can be a huge red flag for potential investors, who see a good business plan as the key ingredient to a successful business.

6. Get a Grasp on the Financials

For first-time restaurant owners, it’s key to have a clear understanding of the capital required to start a business and to stay on top of the financial details that go into keeping your restaurant afloat. You’ll need to get an idea of what initial start-up costs will look like. Typically, new restaurants are subject to a number of startup expenditures including rental costs, licensing, permit costs and more.

Once you move past the initial startup costs, you’ll have to plan wisely for the financial future of your business. The best way to go about this is by creating a comprehensive and realistic operating budget that accounts for factors like total sales, inventory cost, labor costs, and other expenses that will ultimately determine your net income. To keep track of expenses, restaurant owners can greatly benefit from tools like food cost calculation forms and declining balance sheets, which can help keep them organized and make the right business decisions to increase their profits.

7. Develop a Marketing Strategy

Having a well-developed marketing strategy is critical to attracting new customers, increasing brand awareness, and building customer loyalty. To keep up with competitors, you’ll need to establish a strong social media presence on platforms like Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. Posting about daily or weekly specials is a great way to reach new customers and build brand awareness by keeping your restaurant’s name at the top of their news feeds. You can take advantage of social media before your restaurant is even open to build interest in your brand, and after to spread the word of promotions, raffles, and other special offerings that build customer loyalty.

Another unique way to build brand awareness and set your business apart is by selling signature products in-house. If, for example, you have a special BBQ sauce recipe that is unique to your restaurant, consider bottling and selling the sauce at your restaurant. If you have an established brand logo, you can also consider selling signature merchandise like t-shirts, hats, and the like. Products like that are essentially free advertising, turning your customers into brand ambassadors.

Make Your BBQ Business Dreams a Reality

The idea of opening a new BBQ restaurant can be overwhelming, but rewarding. If you take the time to do the proper research, plan a delicious menu, create a viable business plan, invest in the proper equipment, and strategically market your restaurant, you’ll have all the tools you need to make your business dreams a successful reality.

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