Yesterday, restaurant-management software maker Toast announced a partnership with BevSpot, whose own software simplifies the order tracking and inventory process for restaurants. The new solution claims to save businesses time and energy collecting and making sense of data from sales, ordering, and inventory.
Toast’s Android-powered platform already combines a POS system, front- and back-of-house operations, and customer-facing technology (e.g., tabletop order kiosks) into a single cloud-based platform. The BevSpot partnership is a boost because it addresses the often arduous process of gathering and analyzing data from activities that happen behind the scenes: taking accurate inventory, checking the status of an order, and calculating things like pour costs. For a restaurant — particularly a large operation — a combined service like the Toast-BevSpot one could speed up and/or automate a lot of these tasks, not to mention make the numbers more accurate.
Inventory tracking alone is tough; screwing it up, even with a tiny miscalculation, can drastically change the sales numbers. With the Toast-BevSpot integration, businesses will be able to see exact numbers on what goes into the kitchen, what goes out, spillage, customer complaints, theft, and a whole bunch of other factors that affect inventory.
And by harmonizing the POS data with inventory and order data (which is all digitized, thanks to BevSpot), businesses will in all likelihood have an easier time spotting trends, whether it’s about which time of day sells the most fries to what days of the week the kitchen goes through more eggs.
The BevSpot integration is part of Toast’s API Partner Program, where companies can partner with Toast to integrate its system into their own software. Among many others, Grubhub, LevelUp, and Hot Schedules all participate.
Toast raised a $115 million in Series D funding in July and is currently valued at $1.4 billion. But’s a crowded market out there. TouchBistro is a popular competitor and raised a $70 million Series D in June, and Square launched its own POS system in May. This partnership with BevSpot is no doubt a way for Toast to further differentiate itself by dabbling in the data issue — a topic that’s only going to get more important as high tech becomes commonplace in restaurants.