From Michelin rated, to long-time corner delis to the king of the food trucks, all restaurants need basic accounting and bookkeeping skills to keep the business profitable and the stove hot. There is a long, distinguished list of tasty but failed restaurants and many of these failures have less to do with food and more to do with finances. Here are the areas your restaurant must address to keep your business running.
Detailed Sales Totals
Most cash registers today will print out itemized sales totals that allow you to keep track of purchases in essential sales categories, such as alcoholic beverage, entrees and desserts, as well totals for sales tax and an indication of how customers paid the bill. This allows you to keep ahead of tax reporting but also adjust your workforce needs and purchasing practices for your business.
While your employees won’t let you forget to issue their checks, there’s much more to payroll processing than handing out money. Social security, minimum wage and now Affordable Care Act regulations add to the “simple” payroll process. In addition, the government taxes wait staff on their earned tips, adding an additional layer of reporting to your transactions. Keeping up on these regulations is an on-going process, not just a one-time education.
The back offices of restaurants hold notorious reputations for enormous piles of uncategorized – and often misplaced – receipts, invoices and bills. Don’t fall into this trap. Organization and entry of invoices and receipts not only hold up your reputation among essential vendors, but it keeps your sanity through better expenditure projection and yes, dreaded tax reporting deadlines.
You’ll notice all the other entries have some mention of the word “taxes” in them. Failure to keep on top of your finances for tax reporting is a perfect way to sink a business. The government doesn’t care how great your guacamole is, they want their money. From sales taxes, payroll taxes, unemployment insurance and industrial insurance taxes, there’s a long list of regulations and payment schedules to control with your restaurant. This doesn’t even consider that every time legislators decide to modify these laws, everyone must alter their practices to adhere to new regulations. Who has time for that? If you want to keep your doors open, it must be you.
Or does it have to be you? While many small restaurants feel they can’t afford accounting or bookkeeping help, more often it’s that they can’t afford not to bring on a professional to keep their numbers adding up. If you’d like to keep your mind on the cuisine and customers, talk to us how outsourced professional bookkeeping actually saves you both time and money running your restaurant. You keep your eye on oven, we’ll keep you informed on your overhead.