Reopening Guide: Pub, Bar & Café Inventory Management Optimisation

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Reopening Guide: Pub, Bar & Café Inventory Management Optimisation

Inventory management.

We get it. It’s drier than the 250ml of sauvignon blanc you have on the go when you eventually sit down to face it.

Now you’re finally back open after the dark winter inventory management will be a key pillar to getting back to where you need to be financially.

The good news is, you don’t need to find yourself a little tipsy at 1am buried under a stack of spreadsheets. There is a better way.

It’s been a long lockdown. Let’s recap.

- skip to Ways of Calculating Inventory Management below if you remember this bit.

What is Inventory Management?

Investopedia define ‘inventory management’ is:

the process of ordering, storing and using a company's inventory.”

What a lovely definition. We’ll go with that.

Sitting inventory

This is the amount of inventory (as a financial figure) your pub, bar café or restaurant is carrying in-house.


Depletion refers to the amount of inventory used over a specific period of time—measured as a financial, or physical amount.


The amount of sitting inventory (in financial value) divided by the average depletion over a period of time.

Usage = sitting inventory / average depletion


Variance measures the difference between cost of goods purchased and the usage amount’s cost.

Ways of Calculating Inventory Management

Chances are, you’re using one of the following ways if you’re calculating inventory management at all:

  • Manual inputs into your point-of-sale system
  • Excel sheets (many of)
  • Setting up par sheets
  • Pen and (we can barely say it) paper

Yes, some businesses still struggle with pen and paper inventory management. Those that do are sacrificing any chance of achieving the ‘optimisation’ part.

3 Steps to Actually Optimise Inventory Management

key factors to actually optimise inventory management in a food and beverage business are:

ONE: Be consistent!

You’re working with perishable goods soyou MUST take stock daily. Ideally at the same time, before or after doors open or close. This will help you:

  • keep on top of food waste
  • Avoid selling out-of-date food or drink
  • Keep avoidable costs down
Still on pen and paper? Do it all digitally. It’s the 21st century!

Book a demo and start using growyze for free to manage waste, take stock, do ordering and optimise inventory management from your phone.

TWO: Train & build an inventory management optimisation team

Train your team on how to take inventory and why it’s so important. Once they are trained, make them accountable for:

  • Stock take
  • Receiving orders
  • And managing inventory records

    Get growyze on team phones and you can create a stocktake team who’ll become your inventory management optimisation advocates.
THREE: Track daily sales reports

Things move fast in food and beverage businesses.

Inventory management optimisation means staying agile and responding to changing circumstances quickly.

Let’s say you sold a specific menu item more quickly than you imagined.

Now you’ll be low on ingredients. By tracking sales DAILY you’ll give yourself time to respond to order and support demand without having to take it off the menu.

We’ll leave you with a final few tips for inventory management optimisation:

The three points above are your backbone of effective inventory management optimisation. Here are a few side dishes:

FIFO stock
Stack the fridge shelves first in, first out.

Keep overflow stock of popular, non perishable items.

Seasonal planning
Have a clear idea of what you want to sell in seasonal cycles.

You probably knew those last bits.

You might not know though you can start using growyze for 30 days and no credit card required.

Make light work of every task that goes into inventory management optimisation and gather your business data into one place intelligently. You’ll wonder why you used pen and paper.


Smart and easy inventory management only with your mobile phone! Start optimising now for free!

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