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Tuesday, February 01, 2011

Eliminate Fraud and Theft With Tight Food Cost Control

Thanks for your loyalty! This is the 300th post and I am happy to report annual readership has grown from 50,000 to over 70,000 readers. It takes a bad recession to get restaurateurs focused on cost control.

If you want to get down into the numbers, Paul Hewitt, CA has an excellent blog for Canadian Restaurant Owners. Paul's current post is the first in a series and the theme can help restaurateurs anywhere in the world. Check out Restaurant Fraud and Theft, Part I for a great look at ordering, purchasing, and my favorite, receiving issues. In my public speaking appearances, I frequently mention the missing truckload of eggs at the Syncrude operation in Northern Alberta. Locating this fraud was the key to my promotion at the time.

It is always possible for an individual to change from honest to dishonest if they stay too long in the same position. If you suspect a problem and you can't find a logical answer, you may have a thief or worse. I have argued over the years with owners who just could not be convinced a particular issue could only be explained by theft. Usually, there is a trusted employees with years of experience and a huge level of responsibility at the center of the theft ring.

Frequent unannounced inventories of specific items help isolate the problem. Check your POS data and invoices carefully. Look for major variations which can't be solved with minor portion control episodes and spoilage. Check the quality and sniff through protein stocks to eliminate the chance your operation is the garbage can for the delivery driver who has had a day of rejections on the way to your restaurant. This is a problem on long routes for the locations towards the end of the shift. It is a hidden form of fraud. You can be routinely sold food which has expired or will only last a day.

Restaurant Data Pros

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