Covid-19 Update from Bobby Jones Links
Insights from Bobby Jones Links

Yes, Food and Beverage Can Be Profitable

Steve Willy

Food and Beverage is the most challenging department to manage and make profitable – or lose less money. But it can be done.

Couple high staff turnover with cost of sales and labor out of control, and you have a recipe for big losses. Nonetheless, with only one or two exceptions (by design at very high-end clubs), Bobby Jones Links makes money in food and beverage at every one of our clubs.  

Acceptable labor costs should be 30% to 42% of sales, depending on whether it is a snack bar, grill, or fine dining. The cost of sales should be 28% to 40% of revenue, again, depending on the type of operation. Add supplies and other expenses, and a professionally managed department will make a 10% - 20% profit.

For some of our clients, we have taken F&B from losing hundreds of thousands per year to making six figures in profit.

How do we do this?

1. Track labor and cost of sales daily.

2. Forecast revenues and staff accordingly.

3. Limit ala carte and fine dining as much as possible and replace it with themed events and parties. Ironically, this is what members desire today anyway.

4. Take inventory regularly and as often as needed until costs are under control.

5. Check and correct invoices.

6. Weigh meat and fish upon receipt.

7. Use portion control and recipe cards for every menu item.

8. Lock all storage areas, particularly those containing alcohol.

These are just a few of the best practices we employ in food and beverage. They are all outlined in Carpe Diem, our company operations manual twenty years in the making.

F&B is not for the faint at heart. Let us handle it for you.

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