Colony Grill Reduces Labor and Increases Profits with Management Software

| May 08, 2014

In 1935, a post-Prohibition tavern named Colony Grill opened in an Irish neighborhood in Stamford, Connecticut. Since then, the “Colony” has become famous for what is now its only menu offering, a one-of-a-kind thin-crust pizza that is served simply: with or without their signature hot oil.

While keeping its bustling momentum going in the front-of-house, the back-of-house was a different story. Management was relying on antiquated – and slow – processes to manage multiple restaurant locations. The gathering of spreadsheets and reports pulled from various systems was time consuming, delayed access to the information, and increased the probability for inaccuracy. The Colony used Quickbooks to manage their accounting, which resulted in a lack of integration between their inventory, POS, and accounting. Because The Colony did not have an interface with their Aloha POS, the accounting department’s ability to analyze business on a daily basis was hampered.

Seeking 24/7 Data and Integration
The Colony had two primary requirements for their new restaurant management software. First, the management wanted a centrally hosted system where all information is always available and up to date. The second criteria was a system that could integrate daily restaurant operations with accounting.

Compeat Advantage met both requirements, so the Colony installed Advantage in September 2012. The Colony then began doing all of their POS polling, daily sales reporting, inventory control, food cost analysis, accounting, and financial reporting via Compeat Advantage.

After implementing Compeat in 2012, the number one benefit reported by the Colony is one seamlessly integrated system for both operations and accounting. The streamlined systems and accuracy are just part of the benefits. The Colony has also enjoyed an uptick in revenue. “We have seen a huge savings with Compeat, especially in our bar, increasing our alcohol profit margins by 3%,” says Paul Coniglio, Cofounder & CEO at the Colony.

Although time and money savings have paid for the software many times over, the number one benefit reported by the Colony is one seamlessly integrated system for both operations and accounting. “The overarching benefit that Compeat has provided our multi-unit organization is a consistent approach to analyze both Operational and Financial Performance from a single software system that is hosted in the cloud. Compeat has allowed our teams to work smarter,” Coniglio admits.

Compeat Advantage has saved the Colony’s operations team significant time in daily sales reporting, inventory ordering, receiving, and analysis. Managers can be more accurate in meeting their desired par levels and can plan to take advantage of price promotions, all resulting in increased profit and cash flow. The Colony also especially appreciates the ability to analyze inventory usage and to determine on-hand variances.

In just over a year, the Colony has been able to reduce food, beverage, and labor costs by a significant amount via Compeat Advantage. “Compeat also gives us the ability to identify pricing variances and errors with our vendors, which has driven benefits directly to the bottom line,” reports Coniglio.

Benefits for the accounting department from Compeat Advantage have been significant as well. Since replacing Quickbooks and adding Aloha POS polling, the Colony has reduced daily bookkeeping time by 25%, allowing their accounting department more time to analyze financial performance and accurately project cash flow requirements. Compeat financial reporting is also a benefit. “The eXcellent Financial reporting has provided us with the ability to quickly run unit-level and consolidated financial reports, giving our team a consistent format and approach to financial performance analysis,” said Coniglio.

The Colony installed the Compeat labor management software, Advantage Workforce, in the fall of 2013. Plans for opening several new Colony Grill locations are slated for the future and they are excited to utilize even more of Compeat’s robust functionality as they grow. 

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