Find the best Restaurant Management Software

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Epos Now

Epos Now POS systems are an effective business management, sales, and payment solution for single-site, multi-site, and online businesses. Popular with retailers and hospitality businesses in many industries, Epos Now POS systems ...Read more about Epos Now

3.3 (411 reviews)

28 recommendations

Toast POS

Toast POS is a flexible system built exclusively for restaurants and the food service industry. Offering tools like online ordering, delivery, takeout, mobile app ordering, contactless payments, and e-gift card purchasing, this so...Read more about Toast POS

4.2 (515 reviews)

24 recommendations

CAKE POS

CAKE provides an easy-to-use POS that owners will learn like a pro in a short amount of time. The restaurant management system takes care of everything in one place with integrated online ordering, curbside pickup, reservations, ...Read more about CAKE POS

4.6 (508 reviews)

14 recommendations

Lavu POS

Lavu is a Point of Sale solution designed for use by restaurants, bars, and nightclubs - from full-service, quick-service, and franchise restaurants, to food trucks, coffee shops, and lounges. Users can choose between bar, restaur...Read more about Lavu POS

4.2 (222 reviews)

9 recommendations

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Snappy

Snappy is a cloud-based restaurant management solution that helps restaurants of all sizes access technology to seamlessly connect their online and offline customer experiences using one platform. It lets users manage online order...Read more about Snappy

5.0 (5 reviews)

9 recommendations

Rezku POS

Rezku is the premier POS, used by successful restaurants, bars and pizzerias to compete at a higher level, earn new business and eliminate headaches. Rezku comes complete with everything modern food and beverage concepts need for...Read more about Rezku POS

4.5 (27 reviews)

8 recommendations

HungerRush 360

HungerRush is your trusted partner in the restaurant industry, providing integrated solutions designed to simplify your operations and enhance the overall dining experience. Whether you're standing up your first restaurant or look...Read more about HungerRush 360

3.7 (42 reviews)

7 recommendations

TouchBistro

TouchBistro is an all-in-one POS and restaurant management system that makes running a restaurant easier. Providing the most essential front of house, back of house, and guest engagement solutions on one powerful platform, TouchBi...Read more about TouchBistro

3.9 (396 reviews)

5 recommendations

BentoBox

BentoBox is a restaurant POS software designed to help businesses design websites, add content, and connect with customers through automated marketing tools. The platform enables managers to host events, manage social media posts ...Read more about BentoBox

4.4 (25 reviews)

1 recommendations

Yodeck

Yodeck is an award-winning cloud-based digital signage solution that helps organizations of all sizes create amazing digital signs in minutes. Voted #1 easiest to use, it’s a breeze to upload and schedule all types of media, manag...Read more about Yodeck

OpenTable

OpenTable helps restaurants do what they do best—better. Whether restaurant owners want to fill more seats, run smoother shifts, build guest relationships, or earn more revenue, OpenTable has easy-to-use solutions. Customers conne...Read more about OpenTable

7shifts

7shifts is an all-in-one restaurant team management platform that helps operators: 1) Make more profitable decisions. You'll get the insights you need to make the best team and operating decisions every day. Hit your labor targe...Read more about 7shifts

When I Work

When I Work is a cloud-based employee scheduling solution that helps organizations track time and attendance, create and edit employee schedules, add new jobs to the calendar, review timesheets and fill shifts. When I Work le...Read more about When I Work

Deputy

Deputy is a cloud-based human resource management (HRM) solution that provides employee management and scheduling functionalities. Deputy's rostering application can calculate overtime and provide capabilities to schedule staff. I...Read more about Deputy

Tripleseat

#1 Guest and Event Management Software for Hospitality Managing and booking events is stressful. Tripleseat powers restaurants, hotels, and unique/special venues to book more catering, group, and event business and will increase ...Read more about Tripleseat

Clover

Clover POS is an integrated point-of-sale (POS) system with custom hardware designed for several types of retailers. This POS system is available in both web-based and server-based deployment versions and offers countertop hardwar...Read more about Clover

HotSchedules

HotSchedules is the hospitality industry’s most widely adopted intelligent scheduling software. Managers can cut their scheduling time down to 45 minutes or less with the intuitive drag and drop interface while maintaining federal...Read more about HotSchedules

Yelp Guest Manager

Yelp Guest Manager helps restaurants manage all of their front-of-house operations across the entire dining experience through one fully integrated solution — by bringing together Yelp Waitlist, Reservations, Kiosk, Takeout, Table...Read more about Yelp Guest Manager

SpotOn

SpotOn Restaurant is a cloud-based point-of-sale solution that enables businesses to streamline processes related to food ordering, tableside payments, customer retention and more. The online ordering functionality enables busines...Read more about SpotOn

Restroworks

Restroworks(formerly known as Posist) is a company dedicated to serving businesses, specifically partnering with worldwide restaurant chains to help them embrace digital advancements through its all-in-one restaurant technology pl...Read more about Restroworks

Buyers Guide

Last Updated: January 09, 2024

The dinner rush has begun, and once again, your kitchen is struggling to get plates out on time. You’re short-staffed because a server forgot their shift, and the cooks are worried there aren’t enough ingredients to serve the daily special until closing. Everyone is scrambling, and for good reason. You can’t afford another bad revenue day or negative Yelp review in this competitive market.

Such is the life of managing a restaurant, where a thousand things need to go right to keep you afloat, but one thing going wrong can sink you immediately. If you find yourself struggling to keep on top of day-to-day operations, or you don’t have an accurate picture of the road ahead, restaurant management software can help.

If you’ve never researched or purchased a restaurant management system before, that’s OK. This Buyer’s Guide highlights everything you need to know to help find the right solution.

Here’s what we’ll cover:

What Is Restaurant Management Software?

Common Functionality of Restaurant Management Systems

5 Benefits of Restaurant Management Software

How Much Does Restaurant Management Software Cost?

Additional Restaurant Management Software Resources

What Is Restaurant Management Software?

Restaurant management software is designed specifically to help users manage their food service establishment. Some platforms have functionality related to customer interactions, such as that found in a point of sale (POS) system, but more often restaurant management software focuses on behind-the-scenes processes such as restaurant employee scheduling, inventory management and accounting.

Hotschedules

Restaurant employee shift schedule in HotSchedules

Restaurant management software exists in two forms. Systems like HotSchedules are best-of-breed applications that focus on one particular need. But, there are also all-encompassing suites like PeachWorks, which are designed to take care of everything related to managing your restaurant.

Common Functionality of Restaurant Management Systems

Though products vary, here are some examples of common functions you can find in restaurant management systems:

Labor management

Create and manage employee schedules, calculate labor costs and track compliance with laws and regulations.

Inventory management

Keep running counts of what’s in stock and create custom reports.

Recipe management

Create and maintain recipes based on inventory, set menu prices and analyze historical trends.

Accounting

Manage your general ledger, compare financials against budget and generate reports.

Logbook

Collaborate with other users, store customer feedback, take notes and create to-do lists.

POS integration

Collect sales data from your POS system and track how it affects other areas of your restaurant.

5 Benefits of Restaurant Management Software

Using dedicated software to manage your restaurant offers a number of benefits over manual methods like pen and paper or Excel spreadsheets. These include:

  • Reducing duplicate entry. Instead of having to transfer inventory numbers and labor costs into your accounting ledger manually, restaurant management software can do it automatically. Better integration between applications means you don’t have to enter numbers twice, saving valuable time.

  • Improved communication. Individual user logins allow all of your staff to keep up-to-date with information and tasks relevant to them, while automated reminders can ensure that workers never forget when their next shift is again.

  • Greater flexibility. Cloud-based systems allow you to access your account from anywhere with any device if you have an internet connection. If you need to generate a report or switch someone’s schedule from home or while you’re out and about, you can.

  • Fewer errors. Audit trails and flagged entries for anything that appears out of the ordinary can ensure that the information you have is complete and accurate.

  • More accurate forecasting. Using historical data, restaurant management systems can give you more accurate predictions regarding future sales, inventory needs and otherwise. You can dig into your numbers and view them in different ways to uncover trends you might not have otherwise.

How Much Does Restaurant Management Software Cost?

The cost of a restaurant management software system largely depends on the complexity of the system’s functionality and how many locations you need to manage with it.

A basic restaurant POS system to manage your sales and accounting needs may only cost $150 a year, while a more complex restaurant management suite to track every aspect of multiple locations may run you thousands of dollars a month. If you need integrated hardware, such as a tablet or cash register, that will bump up the price as well.

Your payment schedule is also going to vary depending on whether the software is sold with perpetual or subscription licensing.

With perpetual licensing, you pay one large fee upfront to use the software indefinitely. Recurring costs are lower, but the initial cost is substantial. With subscription licensing, you pay a smaller monthly or annual fee as you go along. The upfront cost is lower, but the recurring costs are higher than those with a perpetual license. Costs associated with each licensing option tend to equal out over time.

Ask vendors about the specifics of their particular pricing structure so you can budget for the system accordingly.

Additional Restaurant Management Software Resources

The information found in this Buyer’s Guide offers a good baseline to help you begin researching restaurant management software vendors. Here are some additional Software Advice resources to check out as you decide on a system and learn how to get the best use out of it for your business:

  • How to Inventory Items With Your POS Software: If you’ve never digitized your inventory numbers before, it can feel like a daunting task. This guide offers best practices to help with the transition. We even have an Excel inventory template to get you started.

  • Increase Restaurant Upselling and Grow Revenue With Mobile POS Systems: Did you know your restaurant management software can actually make you money? It’s true. We show how automated server prompts found in mobile POS systems can aid your upselling tactics. An embedded calculator allows you to see how even a $1 average ticket increase can benefit your bottom line.

  • Why Restaurants Fail—and How Yours Can Succeed: There’s no guarantee that a restaurant will succeed. We talk to experts to uncover common mistakes that new restaurants make and offer advice on how yours can excel from the start.