Back Office

Get a Grip on Labor Costs

Right behind food cost is your second most expensive controllable expense: labor. Labor cost, or L/C, is usually referred to as a percentage of gross sales. I stayed on top of hourly labor like a hawk. My point of sale system served as my time clock and provided real time labor amounts in dollars asMore »

Operator Expense Breakdown

Operator Expense Breakdown

Chances are, your employees think you strike it rich with each sale. They don’t realize you have to keep your lights on, buy more cheese and market to keep customers. If you make a $10 sale, they think you’re putting $10 in your pocket. Boy, wouldn’t a 100 percent profit margin be nice? If youMore »

Power Purchasing

Purchasing

Purchasing is the second leg of the profit triangle What is the first question you ask your sales rep every week? I’ll bet it isn’t weather or family related. I’d bet it goes like this: “How much is cheese this week?” I stopped asking the big question in 1989, after I was educated on aMore »

Establish Measurements

Big Dave’s delivered a lot of orders. I’m convinced that one of the biggest reasons we dominated the delivery market in my area was that we measured the amount of time that elapsed from the phone call, in the oven, time out the door and time to the customer’s door. I became very obsessed withMore »

Downsizing Pizza Sizes

It was a hot summer night. I was cruising with my friends. We were a carload of young guys, fresh out of high school, approaching a college campus, looking for a good time. The driver pulled into a drive thru burger place. He said “these burgers are great. I bet you can’t eat two andMore »

Cross Training

The more your crew can do, the better your operation will run. In baseball, triple threats — players who can hit, field and run brilliantly — are rare gems. Entertainers who can sing, dance and act are called triple threats. In our world, my definition of a triple threat is crew people who can “makeMore »

Common Number Problems

Independent operators get a failing grade on a huge issue: they do not have readable financial statements. For the moment, I won’t even consider the problem of getting information too late to be of any real help. Some operators just rely on their accountants to work up the figures and accept what they are given.More »

Cross Train for Rushes

Big Dave Ostrander Crunch Time Remedy Cross training covers all your bases By Big Dave Ostrander Its late afternoon Friday. Within an hour, the phones will be ringing off the wall. Your best crew is checking and double checking stock levels and doing their last minute prepping and fine tuning of their work stations. Then theMore »

Cost of Delivery

History tends to repeat itself. Ten years ago, I wrote an article regarding my personal experiences dealing with soaring delivery costs and associated expenses. Big Dave’s Pizza had a sales mix that approximately half dine-in and half delivery. This ratio, now more than ever, is critical. In the past decade, associated delivery expenses and wagesMore »

Cheese Prices

Did you ever get the feeling you were being overcharged for cheese? How does your supplier set the weekly price of cheese? How do the big chains buy their cheese? What does Block Plus stand for? Why does my cheese seem to be soft and wet sometimes and dry and hard at other times? WhatMore »