Fixed Asset Solutions Can Help Restaurants Prep for Revival
What do fixed asset solutions have to do with the restaurant industry, especially when so many institutions are dealing with sharply reduced business or even closure during this period of self-isolation? Restaurants, cafes and bars have always had thin profit margins (the average is 3 to 5 percent), but over the last few weeks, a significant percentage of them have moved into crisis mode.
State of the Industry: The Sobering Statistics
On March 17, USA Today reported statistics from OpenTable.com showing that restaurant dining is down 42 percent in the United States as of March 14, and in states like Connecticut, Pennsylvania and North Carolina, restaurant dining has declined more than 50 percent.
The bottom line is that restaurants of nearly every variety are tightening their purse strings and making budget cuts. If there was ever a time for accurate recordkeeping, it’s now. That’s where fixed asset solutions can come in, helping restaurants of every size know exactly what they have, what condition those items are in, and where those items are located.
Fixed assets in restaurants range from the cooking equipment and tools in the kitchen to uniforms, company vehicles, furnishings and décor, point of service equipment, laptops and printer in the office, even the restaurant space itself. Failure to keep up with those items can shave much-needed dollars from the bottom line. A manual asset tracking system may appear cheaper at first glance, but in the long term, it can lead to human errors including typos, duplicate figures and gaps in recordkeeping.
Manual Asset Tracking Doesn't Cut It
Excel spreadsheets are the most commonly used manual asset tracking system, and among the shortcomings of this format is the inability to set up reminder notifications when, for example, a much-needed software update needs to take place, or a piece of equipment is due for preventive maintenance.
Also, Excel doesn’t keep all stakeholders involved in the lifecycle of the restaurant’s fixed assets connected. That’s extremely important for reasons of accountability and accuracy.
Another consideration: Even if a restaurant has assigned one person to the task of manual fixed asset tracking, such details as depreciation management can be difficult to track, as can the prevention of lost or stolen assets.
Ghost assets, which can easily result from poor recordkeeping, are very costly and may be discovered months down the line, meaning the restaurant has been paying insurance for items that haven’t been in its inventory for a long time.
Automated Fixed Asset Solutions Improve Accuracy, Efficiency
Fixed asset solutions take the inherently complex and demanding responsibility of asset tracking and outsource it to a platform where all asset data lives including the exact location of an item, its maintenance history, warranty, insurance policy, deprecation schedule, lease or purchase information and much more. Restaurants are able to make decisions that affect their budgets based on real-time information, not guesswork. There’s no more hunting around the office to find out if an appliance is still under warranty, or wasted time to locate an asset that seems to have vanished.
Routine audits are an important part of fixed asset management, enabling restaurants to get an accurate read on the location and condition of their assets. Fixed asset solutions can help here, as well – in fact, they reduce the time required to conduct audits and give managers the peace of mind that comes from knowing they’re making decisions based on accurate data.
Asset Panda’s fixed asset solutions have helped restaurants throughout the country audit, track and manage their assets the way they want – through a completely customizable, intuitive system that requires nothing more than a smartphone to use.