- Toast Order & Pay™
HOUSEpitality increases profit margin 7-10% with Toast Mobile Order & Pay™
HOUSEpitality Restaurant Group, with 8 restaurants across 3 concepts in the Richmond, VA area, expects Toast Mobile Order & Pay™ to help generate an incremental $2.5M per year when all eight locations are back at full capacity.
Reimagining their business with Toast Mobile Order & Pay™
Toast Mobile Order & Pay™ has helped Owner Kevin Healy use contactless payment to completely rethink the operational model at his three restaurant concepts -- The Boathouse, Casa Del Barco, and Island Shrimp Co.
His goal was simple — to use pay at the table technology to create a hospitality experience that’s better than traditional service for both guests and staff, implementing the New Steps of Service.
“Speed of service is better for everyone. Not having to wait to do the administrative work of cashing out, that’s better for everyone. Being able to order what you want, when you want - that’s better. Is it exactly the same? No, it’s not, but I believe it’s a better experience.” Kevin continues.
Despite suffering a 30% decline in sales due to the pandemic, HOUSEpitality has been able to build a healthier business by adopting Toast Mobile Order & Pay™.
“Toast Mobile Order & Pay™ has increased our bottom line by 7-10%. We can see how after COVID leaves and our sales return to normal, that will translate to $2.5M in additional income.”
25-30% pay raises for staff
On top of increased profits, they’re paying staff more and have created greater parity between front- and back-of-house staff. Under the new model, they can cover the floor with 6 servers instead of 16, meaning each server earns more with every shift.
HOUSEpitality group also eliminated tipping by charging a flat 20% service fee which has allowed the business to increase the hourly wages for staff in all areas of the restaurant. This newly captured 20% service fee funds their labor costs for the front-of-house staff, resulting in zero server labor costs most days.
“The beautiful thing is, people are leaving additional tips as well,” Kevin said. “With that, our average employee is making an additional $3 an hour from tips, on top of that increased hourly wage.”
Currently, captains and cooks are making upwards of $20 an hour, with bussers, dishwashers, and food runners earning $15 - $17.
“Almost every one of our hourly employees is making 25-30% more this year than they were last year, and we have experienced a 30% sales decline due to the pandemic. To be able to give our staff a raise to that amount during a pandemic is groundbreaking.”
The new staffing and serving model is working incredibly well for everyone. The group is saving money by eliminating front-of-house labor costs, and employees are making more money than ever before. Even with a 30% dip in sales, everyone is earning more.
“It’s such a great thing,” Kevin said. “And can you imagine how well this will work in normal times, with no Coronavirus?”
How HOUSEpitality transformed their service model
Rethink the role of a server. Rather than having 16 servers working a shift, they now have 6 “captains” providing front-of-house hospitality to the same number of tables — checking on customers, ensuring orders are on time and correct, ensuring a positive guest experience. But the captains don’t have to spend time taking or placing guest orders, and they don’t present the check or process payments.
Set service parameters. It's key to have parameters in place that make sure guests still feel looked after. At the HOUSEpitality restaurants, the captains interact with each table at least 5 times, so they aren’t skimping on hospitality, and they know how to patiently guide first-time users of their new tech through the process.
“We want captains to still be suggestively selling the dinner special, and do the two-minute check back when a meal is delivered,” Kevin said. “We want them to talk about a cocktail at the beginning and a dessert when the entree plates are cleared, and of course, thank the guests for coming in at the end.”
Better for guests, better for staff, better for business
Although they started using Toast Mobile Order & Pay™ because of the pandemic, HOUSEpitality Restaurant Group sees no turning back. Their guests are loving the new dining experience, their staff is making more money during each shift, and they're making more profit than they were before.
“We’re just so excited about coming out of this and knowing that the future is much brighter than it was going into Coronavirus,” says Kevin.