Bookkeeping for Restaurants

Bookkeeping for Restaurants

Bookkeeping for restaurants and record keeping is one of the most important things business owners should get right if they intend to last long in business. Particularly so for restaurants because they have to buy stock often and money is always coming in from the endless stream of customers or going out to  buy and replace stock to serve customers with. If you miss a day or two it will be hard to meet up accurately again which is why book keeping for restaurants should be taken very seriously.

Here are a few guidelines that you should adhere to so that your restaurant has a proper bookkeeping;

Record Sales: There is no one universal way for every restaurant owner to do this, you will have to pick which way will suit you best. However it is more advisable for restaurant sales Bookkeeping for Restaurantsto be recorded on a daily basis and since you will be accepting credit card payments alongside cash payments it will also be helpful if you customized your POS systems so you will get more detailed information. You should also work out your credit card payments in batches; this way the credit card deposits hit your bank account distinctly for each batch. Evaluate how funds enter your bank account and then set up the record system to reflect it. You will also need to build up a report that will summarize your sales. Since cash payments are collected at the restaurant and   don’t go directly into the bank you will need to record them as  not deposited yet, and then when you’ve had them deposited you should move them from the not deposited column to the more appropriate one. This way you would know for sure if the cash made it to the bank or not or if there were discrepancies with cash collected at the restaurant and cash deposited at the bank.

Outsource Payroll: it is prudent to contract to an external pay roll service. This way you reduce liability on your part and also protect yourself against losses that may have occurred if you handled the payroll yourself and made mistakes or filed in details late. Payrolls are sometimes intricate and tax laws are continually changing but with an outsourced payroll service there will be no additional charges incurred for any mistakes. There are, however, some things that you should look out for before choosing a company to do your payroll, things like how reliable their track record of customer service is. You should also check to be sure that the company has QuickBooks integration and if the payroll data can be imported in QuickBooks. Also, look out for how flexible they will be; this will tell how well they can accommodate growth.

Pay Bills on Time: This is very important if you want your business to survive a long time. Keeping your retailers satisfied is a sure way to keep them doing business with you and to maybe even get Bookkeeping for Restaurantsyourself occasional discounts. You can use software to keep record of your bills and also help you pay them or you could decide to do it manually – whichever works for you. Whichever way, just make sure you don’t end up accumulating debt!

So always make it a rule to pay all your bills at least every week.

Keep track of the Restaurant Inventory: You should not overlook the restaurant inventory because this is a sure way to know what you have available and what you don’t. The inventory also help you know what should be bought and when. This inventory keeping may be too tedious a task to use QuickBooks for, so getting a different inventory management control program or an external inventory system would be more advisable. You should also cross-check the values and look out for inconsistencies with the financial reports.

Set up a Bookkeeping Team and assign them specific tasks

You will first have to determine what exactly your bookkeeping needs are and which members of your staff are better qualified to be involved in the book keeping process. The list we would give below is not a universally standard list of who should be on a book keeping team or who should not which means you could replace some spots with people you feel would do a better job;

  • Restaurant owners: it is safer for the owner of the business to be the only person with the power to sign checks, pay bills or move money in anyway. Giving someone else this power may allow for theft or embezzlement. He restaurant owner should also be the one to approve payroll. He should also handle bank deposits and cash transactions.
  • Bookkeeping Team: This team can be made up of trusted employees with certifications in accounting; they should handle entering bills but not paying them because only the restaurant owner has the power to do that. The team should also confirm all cash deposits and should also take care of recording all daily sales and the regular reconciliation of accounts.
  • Restaurant Managers: it is advisable to have restaurant managers oversee all cash deposits; he should handle the regular inventory of food and beverage as well. He can also take care of submission of payroll but not approval of payroll because as I said earlier the approval is exclusive to the restaurant owner.


Here’s list of some common accounting best practices:

  • Recording sales and receipts on a daily basis
  • Maintaining a detailed cost recording of purchase invoices
  • Counting and recording inventory on a daily and weekly basis
  • Keeping a track of key inventory item usage on a daily or weekly basis.
  • Cost reporting food and labor on a weekly basis.
  • Assigning key persons for accounting-oriented tasks.
  • Getting a statement of account that shows how much profit or loss is made at least monthly.
  • Having a POS system for keeping track of time and attendance.


The role flawless bookkeeping plays to the success of a business cannot be over emphasized. You as a restaurant owner should take it very seriously if you want your business to survive and make profit.

Click here to learn about the 10 best ways to maximize restaurant table turnover.

Bookkeeping for Restaurants

By | 2017-05-18T04:30:33+00:00 May 18th, 2017|Restaurant Management|