Restaurant Accounting 101: Manage Your Bookkeeping Like a Pro

bookkeeping restaurant

That’s why it’s the most frequently used method of accounting for restaurants. Cash flow statements are helpful for restaurants because they let you know whether you have enough money coming in to cover your expenses. When you’re looking at a KPI like prime cost, you can get a better picture of just how profitable your restaurant is. It offers a free option with limited features and paid plans that include more robust features. It can be used by owners with beginner-level accounting knowledge and those with a more advanced understanding of accounting.

It’s a good idea to set up an inventory management system that reduces waste and optimizes food cost. This will also help you avoid food surpluses and shortages, and instead strike a more accurate balance. This is the money that you need to pay to suppliers for the goods and service they provide. That’s everything from your delivery partners, ACCOUNTING & PAYROLL SERVICES to utilities and broadband internet, right through to rent for your premises. Inventory turnover for most restaurants should be very high because you’re keeping the food fresh. “The food is normally purchased on a weekly basis and many times more than once per week depending on the types of food being sold in the restaurant.

Accrual Accounting

Not all industries have to deal with tips, weekly reporting periods, and hyper-sensitive labor and inventory metrics. Since accounting is complicated and the restaurant industry is unique, the professional you choose should be an expert in both. Restaurant accounting is also made up of essential bookkeeping processes that keep your business running.

Which bookkeeping method is best?

However, for the most accurate and updated accounting view of your financial health, accrual accounting might be the better choice.

If you are not confident in your ability or lack the time that’s needed for accurate and thorough bookkeeping, consider hiring an accountant. Since your POS logs revenue coming in and much of the money going out of your restaurant (credit card refund, food cost, labor), you can use it to analyze sales and costs. This method reports income as it’s earned and expenses as they appear.

How to Keep Accounting Records for a Small Restaurant

Bookkeepers are more task-based and manage accounts payable, payroll, and posting journal entries. While you won’t leave this article a chartered accountant, we’ll give you the language you need to work with accountants and with restaurant accounting software. In other words, we’ll help you talk the talk, but you’ll still need someone to walk with. Cost of Good Sold (COGS) is a KPI that shows how accurately you’re pricing your food items and controlling your inventory.

“Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization” is used by restaurateurs, investors, and financiers as a proxy for cash flow. EBITDA represents earnings that are a result of operations only, while stripping away the effects of financing, accounting, and capital spending on your restaurant’s earnings. Streamlining the accounts payable process into an AP automation allows you to quickly capture paper and electronic invoices and route them through customized workflows for approvals. Once the invoices are processed, payments can be sent directly and securely through the same dashboard. AP automation is particularly important for growing restaurant companies that need to scale up operations without greatly increasing accounting overhead.

Benefits of Accounting for a Restaurant

Bill quickly learned that other restaurants could use FMS’ help and recruited his daughter Jenny to lead the development of client services. In 2011, FMS merged with a restaurant accounting company to expand financial and bookkeeping services. In 2018, FMS took over another restaurant accounting company adding more services and clients to the mix. Bill and Jenny decided to simplify FMS to Balanced – because it defines what we can do for all aspects of a restaurant, and it sounds cool.

Keeping on top of your bookkeeping is worth far more than avoiding tax season headaches. With diligent financial practices, the right expertise, and sophisticated reporting mechanisms, you’re laying a foundation for business decisions based on the financial heart of your restaurant. The more transparency you have into the key performance indicators that monitor the health of your restaurant, the more swiftly you can take decisive action to remedy wounds. Along with your POS, accounting software helps you keep an eye on your financial performance in real-time.

Restaurant accounting periods or accounting cycles

Run the profit and loss for whatever date range you wish to look at. You can attach your statement to the reconciliation in QBO to make it easy to reference. The only drawback to Toast payroll is that right now they do not have a QuickBooks integration. allows you to add various users with different permissions. If you want to automate all the above steps to create a daily sales journal in QBO we highly recommend taking a look at Shogo. We have been using Shogo for years to automatically create the daily sales journal from various restaurant POS systems to QBO.

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