Top 5 Duties That A Restaurant Owner Must Swear By!

Illustration of Essesntial Duties of a Restaurant Owner

The restaurant owner is the forerunner of the restaurant business. He should be the one who must be competent to lead his entire team from the front. Especially in a market like Singapore where the staff attrition rate is extremely high, and where there is a severe employee shortage, it becomes more than imperative for all the restaurant owners out there to be personally involved in the restaurant operations and not leave the restaurant management completely on the staff.

Restaurant owners in Singapore must ensure that he has a personal connection with the employees on a regular basis. Communication and transparency throughout the team is a must for running a successful business in the Singapore market. Apart from that, he must never forget to check his inventory and sales report on a regular basis and then take appropriate decisions to reduce the unnecessary expenses that might be increasing the overall operational expenses of the restaurant. Analyzing the industry on a regular basis is extremely important to understand the new trends that have captivated the industry at large, which when incorporated in the restaurant business will help you to keep your restaurant over the other competitors in the market. As the statistics say, in 2014 the total number of establishments in the F&B sector was 6,871, which increased to 7,229 in 2015 and further grew to 7,679 in 2016. Considering the massive upsurge in the restaurant industry in Singapore, you can hardly strategize your plans without pondering into what your competitors are doing.

List of Restaurant Owner Duties That Must Be Done Diligently

The restaurant owner must under no circumstance leave the operations of running a restaurant on the staff after opening a restaurant in Singapore. You must understand that no one will take care of your restaurant business better than what you would. Restaurant management is not an easy task and needs your full-time attention. This makes it imperative for a restaurant owner to be aware of his duties and keenly follow and perform them on a regular basis that will streamline the entire restaurant business.

1. Manage Finances Keenly

Money is what will keep your restaurant business going and running. Hence it is imperative for you to have a very competent accountant on board who will help you with managing your restaurant finances. However, this does not mean that you will leave the complete finance management on your accountant, as a restaurant owner you must have a very comprehensive understanding about how one should handle the restaurant finances that will bolster your restaurant business.

When you are opening a restaurant, you must understand that merely using all your investments in setting up and in the inauguration process is a risky business idea. Knowing the fact that no business starts garnering profits from the first day, you must keep aside a substantial standing capital that will help you in managing your fixed costs until your restaurant reaches its breakeven and starts acquiring a healthy profit margin. These fixed costs include rentals, electricity, salaries of the staff, other miscellaneous expenses like the maintenance of equipment, replacing the crockery and the like.

Knowing the fixed cost is extremely important unless you start enjoying the profit margin, once you do, then you can change your financial plannings to suit your business needs.

The proper approximate ratio, sales to investment, is 3:1 meaning that $ 300 of sales are generated for every $ 100 spent on construction, FF&E (Furniture, Fixture, Equipment) and opening costs. Most operators have a ratio of about 1:1 and with a projected 10% or less profit per year the operator will not return the investment until well into the maturity of the business. This is a very wrong way of handling the finance of the restaurant. Hence, plan your finances in a way that this ratio is maintained.

2. Ensure Communication Amongst The Staff  

As already mentioned that Singapore suffers from the chronic problem of severe staff shortage. And this makes it all the more necessary for a restaurant owner to ensure that all your restaurant employees are happy, that will help you in reducing the employee turnover rate.

An average restaurant in Singapore spends almost 29.3% of the of the total operating expenditure on remunerations. This statistics clearly shows that unless you are able to retain your employees, you will have to go through the entire hiring process again and again which might increase your overall expenditure. To avoid such instances, it is essential for you to keep your staff satisfied, maintain a personal relationship with them and offer upward mobility and regular incentives as per their performance. This will keep your staff hitched to your restaurant business, and they will work harder if they see their rewards coming.

Maintaining transparency is one of the most basic prerequisites. Your employees must be informed about your future plans. Remember that unless the staff is told the targets clearly, and what needs to be achieved and why it needs to be achieved, they will fail to showcase the zeal required that will help you reach your goals. Moreover, once you involve your restaurant employees in the decision-making process, it will make them feel important and needed. In addition to this, you must understand that it is the staff who deals with the customers on a regular basis and hence their views will play a major role in helping you plan your future advances.

As a restaurant owner, you must keep your staff happy, reward them regularly, take their opinions into consideration and you will be more than sure to retain them and build a band of loyal employees.

3. Doing Industry Analysis

Just running your restaurant and not caring much about the new trends in the market and what your competitors are up to will not do you any good. Every season come with new trends that seize the Singapore F&B industry. And these are the trends you need to harness that will help you increase your customer trial base exponentially while ensuring that you encourage enough repeat customers.

Quite similarly unless you have an understanding of what your competitors in the market are doing, what is working for them and what is not, how will you plan your future moves? Whenever you have a unique plan, try and analyze your competitors to see, if they have ever tried something similar and if they have tasted success it in. If yes, then you can go ahead with your plans with minor changes to stand out in the market, if no, then you need to ask, what is it that exactly didn’t work. Learning from your competitor’s failures is the best way you can craft your strategies to ensure that you do not repeat the mistakes that they have fallen prey to.

4. Monitoring The Restaurant Reports Religiously

Merely starting a restaurant and not monitoring its operations will not help you to bolster your restaurant operations. You must keep a keen eye on every sector of your restaurant business, be it inventory, billing, sales, managing employees and vendors, and ensuring that all the departments of your restaurant are running smoothly and as per your expectations. However, you might think that how can a restaurant owner monitor all these alone!

Worry not, Singapore restaurant industry has seen a swift shift from the traditional POS to the new age cloud-based restaurant management softwares. A robust restaurant POS  will your best friend and will help you in running your restaurant in the best way possible. The POS provides comprehensive reports of the total sales, stock & inventory, CRM, total bills generated and also comparative reports if you are running multiple outlets. Hence, it is not that difficult to keep an eye on all these reports that will help you to spot any discrepancies that might be burning a hole in your cash register.

5. Socializing With The Industry Veterans

As a restaurant owner, you merely cannot engage yourself in the running of the restaurant, and you must ensure that you play a role to create your own space in the industry. This is especially important if you are new in the business. It is imperative for a restaurant owner to socialize within the restaurant community. Hence be a part of the various restaurant owners meets and increase your contacts within the circuit. The more you increase your connection, and more the people of the industry are aware of your presence, the popularity of your restaurant will increase. Moreover, such events and meets are a great way to get in touch with potential investors who might be interested in investing in your next big venture.

Hope you have acquired all the necessary duties that you as a restaurant owner must perform rather diligently. As the leader of the restaurant, you must not only have a firm hold on your restaurant operations, and you should be the spokesperson in Singapore’s restaurant community as well. Being a restaurant owner is a full-time job that demands your full energy and attention. But once you have established the credibility of your restaurant as a brand, you can look back at all the hard work, and feel that it was all worth the efforts.


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Prachi is the Marketing Manager at Restroworks. In her current capacity, she establishes connections with key stakeholders in the F&B industry and serves as the host of The Restaurant Times talk show, "F&B Talks," tailored for the restaurant sector. With hands-on experience in international sales and marketing, Prachi has led initiatives in the LATAM and USA regions, contributing to the platform's global outreach.


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