Restaurant Manager Duties and Responsibilities

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Owning a restaurant is one thing. Managing it is a whole different ball game. Although some independent restaurant operators will choose to take on managing as well, just as often they don’t. Why? Because they know being a restaurant manager is one of the toughest jobs out there and just because you own a restaurant doesn’t mean you have to manage it all yourself. It may not be a bad idea to hire a restaurant manager. 

To start, you should take an honest assessment of your skills as they relate to being an effective restaurant manager. Are there skills you lack? If so, are you willing to develop them? What gaps are there in the management process? Would you benefit from hiring a restaurant manager? Or would it be a good idea to find a restaurant management system that could help you out? What about both? Before you can make these decisions, you must understand the main restaurant manager duties, along with the attributes a restaurant manager needs to succeed. Let’s get to it.

What are the duties and responsibilities of a restaurant manager?

You want to talk about restaurant manager duties? To put it simply, a restaurant manager is responsible for managing the restaurant. Everything about it. Sounds like a no-brainer, right? Well, what exactly does it mean to manage a restaurant? There’s a lot more that goes into it than a lot of people think.

Whether it’s the food, the staff, the happiness of customers, or the cleanliness of the restaurant, the restaurant manager oversees all of it. Some people say restaurant supervisor duties are similar to those of a restaurant manager, and on occasion the two titles can be used interchangeably. Regardless of what you call the person in charge, managing a restaurant is a stressful job, and not everyone’s cut out for it. Here are the main restaurant manager duties and responsibilities:

  1. Ensure operations are running smoothly
  2. Hire and onboard the necessary staff
  3. Manage human resources and handle any team conflicts that arise
  4. Keep guests happy
  5. Make sure inventory management is under control
  6. Oversee finances
  7. Ensure proper health and sanitation practices

1. Smoothing out operations

A lot goes on inside a restaurant. You see plenty of that on the surface, but it’s what goes on behind the scenes that’s really the most critical. One of the most important elements in a restaurant’s operations is the restaurant management software it uses. 

When someone makes a reservation, what’s the procedure? How are orders relayed to the cooks? How does payroll work? These are just a few questions that relate to the operations of your restaurant. Operations top the list of restaurant manager duties. If your operational procedures are rocky and you don’t have the right solutions in place, it’ll be hard to keep things running efficiently. Operational miscues could lead to guest and staff dissatisfaction, and that’s a recipe for failure.

Need help? Check out our restaurant operations software.

2. Hiring and training your crew

One of the biggest keys to your success is your people. The cooks, the servers, and even the bussers are all part of your brand. It’s why hiring is so critical. And you don’t just need the right people on the boat; you also need to train them. Proper onboarding and ongoing training are essential to keep staff engaged and performing at a high level. Delighting customers starts by finding the right team members. Choose them wisely and train them well. Hiring and training is one of the more critical restaurant manager duties, because it’s ultimately the staff members and team members who are the boots on the ground making sure customers are satisfied.

3. Having a handle on human resources

Human resources is essential inside a restaurant. How will you handle disputes between staff members? What about a potential altercation between a staff member and a customer? Will you have to take disciplinary action against a staff member for theft or disorderly conduct? In a perfect world, you’d never have to, but the reality is that sooner or later an issue that involves human resources will arise. Be ready, and make sure it’s well understood as one of the top restaurant manager duties.

Need help? Check out our HR and staffing software for restaurants.

4. Keeping guests happy

Delighting customers is the whole reason your restaurant exists. Why? Because if you fail to delight them, your restaurant won’t be around very long. So focus on guest satisfaction. Every interaction is important. The atmosphere, the level of cleanliness, the customer service, and the quality of the food. These are all things a restaurant manager should keep a close eye on.

5. Handling inventory management

Managing inventory is not easy. It can be hard to predict how much food you’ll need on a given week, especially as a new restaurant owner. Finding the right suppliers who have the best prices can take a lot of time and effort. Find an inventory management system. It’ll make your life a lot easier.

Need help? Check out our inventory software for restaurants.

6. Overseeing finances

If you don’t make money, you go out of business. How do you avoid those? You guessed it—with a restaurant manager who stays on top of it all. The good news is there’s software for that also. Restaurant cash management software will help you track cash movement and stay on top of it all digitally without having to keep detailed notes of every little transaction. And reporting and analytics software will give you a detailed view of how everything’s going in your restaurant analytics.

7. Ensuring proper health and sanitation practices

Foodborne illness is a huge issue. In fact, the CDC estimates that yearly about one in six Americans gets sick from foodborne illness. Annually, it results in 128,000 hospitalizations and 3,000 deaths. Food poisoning harms your guests and therefore your restaurant. If people get sick from your food, it’s not likely they’ll feel too excited about coming back or telling their friends about you. 

Follow safe food handling practices. Encourage employees to wash their hands. And be especially careful during times of a global pandemic. COVID-19 is a major concern for customers, so consider showing respect and caution by having your employees wear masks.

Need help? Check out our employee health check software.

What should a restaurant manager job description look like?

If you’re trying to complete a job description for a restaurant manager position, you’ll want to list the necessary restaurant manager job duties that we’ve outlined above. On top of that, it might be smart to list an approximate salary range so candidates know what to expect. In addition to salary and job duties, you should also list the skills needed. Here are some to consider:

  • The ability to manage a team
  • Comfort working in a fast-paced environment
  • Customer service experience
  • Human resources experience
  • Restaurant experience

What solutions are there for restaurant managers?

A restaurant manager doesn’t have to go it alone. Thankfully, there is restaurant management software that can take away many of the headaches of all their specific restaurant manager duties. 
At SynergySuite, we can help you with anything from HR and payroll to cash management and employee health checks. Want a hands-on look at what our software can do for you? Feel free to request a demo and we’ll walk you through everything.

Leveraging Technology to Manage Restaurant Labor Costs Whitepaper cover image

Leverage Technology to Manage Restaurant Labor Costs

Between increased costs, labor shortages, and socio-economic complexities - staying on top of labor costs is more important than ever for franchise owners.

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