Bars and restaurants have traditionally been low margin businesses. These low margins, combined with high personnel costs, make it crucial for owners to find creative ways to cut costs in other areas of their operations. Payment automation has provided an easy way in which bars and restaurants have successfully reduced costs in recent years.
The United States has a three-tiered alcohol system which involves manufacturers, distributors and retailers. As a result, bars in most states are forced to purchase their alcohol from multiple vendors. It’s common for many establishments to buy from as many as 10 vendors, and this creates numerous individual bills from these differing vendors. Depending on the number of vendors you work with, your team may need to go through about 10 separate invoices per week.
This can be a time drain on your managers, creating a significant pain point that technology has been able to successfully address. In recent years, payment automation software has become much more affordable, functional and accessible to restaurant owners. This has paid huge dividends to businesses. Owners and managers are able to spend less time paying invoices and more time running their bar.
Plate IQ Is an Industry Leader in Payment Automation Software
Plate IQ was founded in 2014 and has become one of the leading providers of payment automation software in the years since. Their service automates the entire payment process for you:
- You have the ability to use your paper invoices with their software or set up direct integrations with your distributors
- Your paper invoices are digitized – scan them into the Plate IQ system and the software will handle the rest
- All invoices are automatically paid for you
While the main cost savings provided by Plate IQ involves the reduction in time spent by your managers paying bills, there are other value additive features associated with this service. For example, the Plate IQ software identifies price discrepancies in your invoices. If the system notices that the price of a particular item increased one week, they flag this item and alert you so that you can contact your distributor to make sure you continue getting the best possible price. These features help you save even more money from the payment automation process.
Leverage the Benefits of Each Service by Integrating Plate IQ with Bar-i’s Inventory Software
Plate IQ’s line by line extraction of data automates manual invoice entry. Their system uses AI to convert paper invoices to digital records. In doing so, they have to read line by line detail on each invoice (i.e. there are 6 bottles of Jack Daniels, 4 bottles of Tito’s vodka, etc.). This line-by-line data is used to assign the costs of each item to grand ledger codes for improved accuracy and cost calculation.
- Item name
- Quantity delivered
- Size of the bottle
- Price paid
Traditionally, we’ve had to manually enter that information from paper invoices. But with our new Plate IQ integration, we can automatically extract that line-by-line data from their system and enter it directly into our software.
Why Do We Need this Information for Bar Inventory?
Bar-i’s Make Counting Count™ System is focused on increasing your bar’s profits. We do this by precisely comparing what is sold vs. what is poured for every product you carry. Here’s how this process works:
- To see what is sold, we look at POS data
- To see what was poured, we compare the totals from the previous inventory count to the totals at the current inventory count
- The difference between the two is how much product was used during this inventory cycle
- Orders must be factored into this calculation to get an accurate picture of what was used
For example, if you had 2 bottles of Jack Daniels remaining after your previous inventory count and ordered a case of 12 bottles this week, you had a total of 14 bottles of Jack Daniels on hand this week. If you only have 9 bottles remaining at the current inventory count, it means 5 bottles of Jack Daniels were used during this inventory cycle. We can then compare the 5 bottles used to the amount of Jack Daniels sold on your POS report to determine the precise number of servings that went missing during that inventory cycle.
When you use Plate IQ payment automation software, our new integration with their system makes the process of gathering all the information we need to perform these calculations much more streamlined, saving your team a great deal of time during their inventory counts.
How Does Bar-i’s Plate IQ Integration Work?
Integrating Bar-i’s bar inventory system with your Plate IQ payment automation system is extremely easy, and there is no cost for this integration. All you have to do is provide us with a login to your Plate IQ account and you’ll never have to scan invoices specifically for Bar-i again. We can pull the invoice information directly from your Plate IQ account.
If you already use Bar-i for your inventory efforts and you’re looking to add payment automation software to your operations, choosing Plate IQ will allow you to achieve a complementary relationship that increases the benefits you’ll achieve from each software. In addition to all of the benefits associated with using payment automation software, you’ll eliminate the need to save and scan invoices for Bar-i as part of your inventory counts.
Ultimately, this equates to additional time and money savings for your bar:
- Save time and money on processing accounts payable using payment automation
- Save time and increase bar profits by using our bar inventory software to eliminate shrinkage (Bar-i clients typically increase bar profits by 30% by reducing shrinkage and lowering their liquor cost by 3% on average)
Using these two pieces of technology together will help your bar be more efficient, allowing you to thrive in a challenging restaurant industry landscape.
Contact us today to schedule a free consultation. Bar-i serves clients nationwide from our offices in Denver, Colorado.