Using Data Analytics To Optimize Restaurant Margins

See how ClearQuery helps a restaurant GM increase average guest check size and increase overall margins.


General Manager
Food & Beverage

The Situation Today

Meet MaryEllen, mother of 2, primary income earner at home, and the the General Manager for a $3M/year local restaurant chain based in Northern Virginia whose profit margins have been dwindling as of late. With the rising cost of supplies due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it has become critical for MaryEllen to find ways to increase profit margins without raising costs and losing the patronage of some of the store's longest standing clients. On top of all of that, MaryEllen is constantly dealing with a revolving door of servers that have less familiarity with the menu than the few veterans remaining.

Being a small store, MaryEllen doesn't have a tech team behind her, so she spends hours manually creating charts in Excel and putting together reports in Microsoft Word and PowerPoint to keep the owners of the company appraised of the current status of the business. With all of this time wasted building reports, there is less time available to train new employees and find ways to optimize. It also results in late nights at the office and less time a home with the family.

The store owners in recent weeks have indicated to MaryEllen that unless profit margins increase in the near future, they will be forced to make cuts at the restaurant which may include MaryEllen's salary or in the longer term the complete closure of the store. MaryEllen knows the answer is in the data if she can ask the right questions, but that typcally requires lots of skills or time she doesn't have.

Enter ClearQuery

Fortunately, MaryEllen came across ClearQuery - a simplified data analytics platform that helped her find the answers she needed quickly.

  • By simply asking ClearQuery "What is the average guest check size by server?", MaryEllen was able to adjust scheduling to pair the highest performers with newer staff for training resulting in a net increase in sales volume and average guest check size in a matter of a few weeks.
  • ClearQuery's Automated Insights feature showed MaryEllen which menu items were most often being disposed of due to lack of sales, allowing her to make adjustments to future order sizes and cut down on spend on inventory of the wrong items.
  • Finally, MaryEllen was able to create a living presentation that updated with the data using ClearQuery's Insights Canvas which cut down on the time it took to gather the data she needed to present to the owner's giving her more time at home.

The beauty of all of this - MaryEllen was able to do all of this with no tech skills required and no complicated set up needed.

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