Simply Delicious

Today we are featuring an establishment located just a few blocks down the road from POSitive headquarters. The Concordia Ale House is excited to announce their new menu to the public. Owner Monty Weschenfelder has been running this local ale house for over three years and is ready to introduce some delicious additions to Portland’s Concordia neighborhood. The modification to the old menu includes: new appetizers, higher quality ingredients, and revamped happy hour choices.

With about 30 local beers on draft, you can’t go wrong making this your next happy hour destination. While you enjoy a cold one, check out their “Crowler” canning machine and take home a 32 oz can of your favorite draft beer. You can’t go wrong pairing that with some of their new appetizers and the manager-recommended Ale House Pastrami Po’ Boy.

Thank you Concordia Ale House for introducing new flavors to a neighborhood staple. This establishment is ready to continue pleasing the stomachs of the community for years to come.

Posted by 72mm 72mm on June 21st, 2018

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On Track for Success

Today’s spotlight takes us to Oregon City where a local restaurant owner is quite literally “on track” for a successful grand opening.

Brian Grant, owner of Coasters Brew Pub, is excited to announce that he will be opening a second location at the Oregon City Station along the Amtrak line. The new location, Coasters Crossing, will be a “burger, fish and chip joint,” according to Grant. He hopes the new restaurant will become a staple for train-goers and their families.

Any traveler headed south to Eugene or north to Seattle will be passing by Coasters Crossing. Grant hopes that people waiting for the train will pop into his restaurant and try out his delicious high-end bar food. The building that houses the new dining outlet used to be a train station in its former years. After being transported around Portland, it finally found its resting spot along the local Amtrak line.

An ode to the past mixed with the delicious “Coasters” menu will make it a staple for travelers and residents alike. Coasters Crossing is working hard to complete construction and hopes to open by the end of the month. The next time you’re in the area, go check out this at”track”tive restaurant.

Posted by 72mm 72mm on June 18th, 2018

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Local Customer’s Approach to Conquering Quality Family Time

Think about the last time you ate at a restaurant. Was every person at your table interacting with each other throughout the whole meal? There is a high likelihood that at least one person was checking their phone constantly, another was scrolling through instagram, and another was sending snapchats repeatedly.

With all of the ways that technology is incorporated into our everyday lives, one place it is not welcomed is the dinner table. Bethany Public House in Portland’s Bethany district is offering a new approach to the way families spend their meal time.

These days, it seems that cell phones are present in every part of our lives. There is very little encouragement when it comes to promoting a face-to-face interactive environment. Enter Bethany Public House. According to local news station Fox 12 Oregon who covered the story on this innovative restaurant, “Owner Andre Jehan says on Sunday nights, he’s offering a 10-percent discount on meals if everyone at the table puts cellphones [sic] away,”

If families choose to participate, each person places their cell phone into a container on the table that is covered with a seal. “Anybody who breaks the seal pays for the meal,” says Jehan jokingly.

The inspiration for this idea started when Jehan (a customer of POSitive Technologies, Inc. since 2000) noticed how many families were distracted by their phones while dining at his restaurant. The new promotion stemmed from his desire to encourage customers to invest in family time. They are currently offering the discount to cell-phone-free tables during Sunday dinner only, but hope to extend that promotion to all of the days of the week in the future.

With a little bit of help from Bethany Public House, local families are spending their Sunday dinners enjoying quality face-to-face conversations.

Posted by 72mm 72mm on June 8th, 2018

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“I believe that Service is what matters” by Chris Wegner, Ernesto’s Italian Restaurant

October 30, 2017, 10:15pm

“So four months and a while ago I started a journey I didn’t want. I say this to remind myself that service, I believe, is what matters. This can come in many forms.
So when Mike and I reached a deal buy Ernesto’s it was time to transfer licenses, accounts etc. One company was unresponsive, to say the least. I am not going to mention names but it held the deal up. That company controlled the Point of Sale system.

In the weeks and months that followed, it got worse. Now this is the last thing I really wanted to buy as it is a big investment. Really I just want to serve great food to great people and support my team.

It finally came to a crossroads when said company told me; “Maybe I am not big enough to sell gift cards, I should probably sell gift certificates.”
Just wow!

Today I got an invoice from said company asking to extend their service contract. I was nice but brutally honest when I shared that today I was unplugging them and installing a new service. I suppose kudos they responded and let me know they had submitted my response to a manager and wished me well.

So now I want to talk about service. I interviewed 10 different companies and landed with a company called POSitive Technologies, here in Portland. Today they installed Restaurant Manager at Ernesto’s and I am pretty sure myself and my team will love it.

So why did I choose them?

  1. They ate in my restaurant. They introduced themselves after they had lunch in a low key way.
  2. They were up front on pricing. They had an honest price from day one.
  3. When I saw their demo it was catered to me and my restaurant.
  4. They added service. 3 years support end to end.
  5. They catered the system to my restaurant’s needs. Ernesto’s is a creative place, our guests like to customize their dining and I needed a stable integrated system not reliant but accessible by the cloud.

Last week they installed and allowed us a week test drive. Today we went live.
First impressions; I am so very proud of my crew, were there hiccups? Yes and they handled them and brought them up. They backed me here 100%.

Service from Positive has been outstanding. We had backup all day and more to come. Yes issues, but minor ones, fixed in the moment.
I love my job and appreciate partners like POSitive Technologies, who truly partner to make transitions seamless.”

Chris Wegner
Ernesto’s Italian Restaurant
8544 SW Apple Way
Portland, OR 97225
503 292-0119
chriswegner@live.com

 

Posted by Kelsey on November 16th, 2017

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“What Is Cloud Computing and Why Use it For Your Restaurant?”

By RMagazine|February 10th, 2017|Technology

For years, companies such as eBay, Amazon, and Google have used cloud computing to bring easy-to-use services to consumers by offering a fundamentally faster, less risky, and more cost-effective alternative to on-premises hardware and software. From computing power to computing infrastructure, alongside applications, business processes, and personal collaboration — they can all be delivered to you as a service wherever and whenever you need.

The “cloud” in cloud computing can be defined as the set of hardware, networks, storage, services, and interfaces that combine to deliver aspects of computing as a service. Cloud services include the delivery of software, infrastructure, and storage over the Internet (either as separate components or a complete platform) based on user demand.

While cloud computing is undoubtedly beneficial it is not without its cons. I now bring you a list of advantages and disadvantages of cloud computing, with a view to helping hospitality professionals get a simple understanding of the concept of cloud computing.

Let’s acknowledge the benefits of cloud computing first:

  1. No More old: Say ‘Goodbye’ to costly traditional brick and mortar Point of Sale systems: Cloud computing enables hospitality professionals to enjoy minimal dollar expenditure in the areas of software licenses, professional services, software licenses, and on site hardware support contracts as well as less expensive hardware requirements.
  2. Cloud computing applications: They offer a lower total cost of ownership. Applications do not need large capital investments for support infrastructure or licenses.
  3. Quick Deployment: Cloud computing gives you the advantage of quick deployment of new versions of software and or updates and upgrades without the need of on site expensive technical installation and support.
  4. Access from many options: Another advantage of cloud computing is accessing the Point of Sale back office environment of cloud natively, through other amazing options such as smart phones, tablets, IPad and netbooks any place anywhere.
  5. Lowers traditional servers’ cost: Cloud for business removes the huge costs of on site computer costs. No more extra costs associated with upgrading and increasing memory, hard drive space, and processing power, operating system upgrades all are all abolished.
  6. Data Centralization: Another key benefit of cloud services is the centralized data. The information for multiple locations and different concepts are stored in one location that can be accessed from remote places without the need of any specialized software, simply log into your web browser.
  7. Data Recovery: Cloud computing providers enables automatic data backup on the cloud system. The recovery of data when a hard drive crash is either not possible or may cost a huge amount of dollars or wastage of valuable time.
  8. Security: Cloud service vendors choose only the highest secure data centers for your information. Moreover, for sensitive information in the cloud, there are proper auditing, passwords, and encryptions.
  9. Instantly Test: Various tools employed in cloud computing permits you to test a new product, application, feature, upgrade or load instantly. The infrastructure is quickly available with flexibility and scalability of the distributed testing environment.

Now let’s check out the disadvantages of cloud computing as well:

  1. Network Connection: For cloud computing, a solid and fast internet connection is a must to access your precious data, without an internet connection the connection is severed and most Point of Sale systems will need to run in offline mode and store data locally until such time a connection to the internet can be restored and the data uploaded.
  2. Internet Connectivity: Running all or some of your business applications in the cloud is great, as long as you can maintain a consistent Internet connection. If any one of your cloud-based service providers loses connectivity, or if your ISP experiences an outage, you’re out of business until that Internet connection returns. Even the best servers go down occasionally, so if you decide to use this method, it’s important to implement a disaster backup plan.
  3. Network Architecture: You need to purchase commercial grade hardware. Do not implement low-grade hardware. App performance could suffer. Not installing a private wifi cloud network that is not optimized will lead to poor performance and latency issues. Never use a public cloud.
  4. Data Ownership: You need to ensure you can back up your reports and data locally for historical purposes such as audits. Back ups should be in the form of Excel or PDF and or CSV files keeping things simple.
  5. Low Bandwidth: With a low bandwidth network, the benefits of Cloud computing cannot be utilized. Sometimes even a high bandwidth connection can lead to poor quality performance due to high latency and limited bandwidth.
  6. Network Traffic Quality: The internet is used for various reasons such as listening to music, watching videos online, downloading and uploading files, printing from the cloud and the list goes on. The quality of Cloud computing connection can get affected when a lot of people utilize the net at the same time.
  7. Security Issues: Of course, cloud computing keeps your data secure. But for maintaining complete security, an IT consulting firm’s assistance and advice is important. If you don’t take steps the business can become vulnerable to hackers and threats.
  8. Non-negotiable agreements: Some cloud computing vendors have non-negotiable contracts for the companies. It can be disadvantageous for a lot of businesses.

To conclude, there are pros and cons of the cloud but cloud computing has become a mandatory part of every business venture. Today, one cannot think without enjoying the benefits of cloud computing. With careful precautions and efforts, the disadvantages of cloud computing can be minimized. It’s true that cloud computing has rocked the business world. In my humble opinion, the pros outweigh the cons. The minimized costs, easy access, data backup, data centralization, sharing capabilities, security, free storage and quick testing speaks for itself. If you can overcome the list of cons, the rest of the process should go on smoothly, thereby providing immense benefits for your operation.

Posted by Kelsey on August 25th, 2017

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On-Line Ordering Increases Take-out Revenue an average of 30%

In a recent study published in Business Insider magazine found that restaurants that implement an online ordering system increase their restaurant’s take out revenue by an average of 30%. One in five of these restaurants more than doubled their take out revenue.

Changing customer behavior and increased competition are making it imperative that restaurants adopt an online ordering system. However, third party platforms can charge substantial fees for their service really eating into the profits of your restaurant. Additionally, the orders coming in need to be manually entered into your POS system creating enormous opportunity for errors.

Positive Technologies offers POS systems with completely integrated online ordering solutions. These solutions are far less expensive on a per-order basis and completely avoid the need to re-enter the customer’s order into the POS system.

Additional Benefits to Online Ordering:

  • Reduce Labor of taking orders by phone at the restaurant
  • Research shows online orders have a 20% higher ticket average
  • A customer can schedule the time for pickup thus increasing kitchen flow and efficiencies.
  • Different pricing and menu items available online vs. in store
  • Customers can pay in advance for orders

For more information and consultation on how an On-Line ordering system can help your restaurant please contact POSitive Technologies.

Posted by Kelsey on July 17th, 2017

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Getting the Most out of Your POS System

Today’s POS (Point of Sale) systems are much more than a cash register to ring up sales and put cash into. The modern POS system is an essential part of your business. The POS system should increase the efficiency of your restaurant’s operations, provide actionable information to help manage your business, prevent theft and loss, improve the overall guest experience and increase sales.

Increase Operations Efficiency

  • Orders are entered quickly and accurately into the system and sent to the Bar and Kitchen
  • Sales and Labor reports are automatically calculated saving hours of management time and paperwork
  • Decrease Labor with Kiosk and mobile ordering

Provide Actionable Information

  • Up to the minute information available on POS station or smart phone
  • Labor running high, send someone home
  • Voids, refunds, big spenders all sent to your smart phone

Loss and Theft Protection

  • Nothing gets out of the kitchen/bar without being entered in the POS
  • Security levels ensure only management and owners have access to protected functionality and information
  • Blind drops of the cash till prevent skimming

Improve the Guest Experience

  • Guests are served more quickly
  • Guest meals are prepared accurately
  • Online, mobile ordering and numerous secure payment methods

Increase Sales

  • Reward and market to your loyal customers
  • Increase take-out and delivery through online ordering
  • Know your menu mix and adjust accordingly

There are many additional benefits to the POS system. Partnering with an experienced local POS solution provider can ensure you get the most of your POS investment and have local service and support to assist you with the success and growth of your business. Give POSitive Technologies a call for a complete solution consultation.

Posted by Kelsey on July 17th, 2017

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Restaurant Tipping Laws Explained

Dave Harmsen of Pacific Coast Accounting, informs us about the current legal rules on the tipping laws.

Harmsen, a not-your-typical accountant, has been involved in the hospitality industry here in Portland for over 30 years. His personality is large and his knowledge is even larger. He started his career managing restaurants and hotels where he then became a restaurant consultant. He realized his calling should be in accounting and went on to PSU for his master’s degree.

Rogue Ale was one of his earliest clients. The word soon got out on his expertise and now he is the go-to accountant for Oregon restaurants.

We asked him to give us the ‘low-down’ on the 1996 ruling that requires servers at larger restaurants to declare an amount equal to 8% of their total cash sales as tip income. First, he talks about what is considered a larger establishment, “It is based on how many employee hours a day. If a restaurant averages 80 hours a day over the course of a work week, they are considered a large restaurant in the eyes of the IRS. This does include back of house, managers, and front of house employees.”

He went on to explain more, “If the total tips reported by all employees are less than 8% of the gross receipts, the employer must allocate the difference among the employees who receive tips. This can be done in one of two ways, either by taking the total revenue and dividing the 8% up based on the server’s sales or based on hours worked.”

He emphasized that 8% is the magic number, however; servers must legally declare their actual tips, which may be significantly more.

The employer has multiple obligations with regard to employee tip income, including record keeping and reporting responsibilities. Harmsen emphatically states, “This has become so much easier now with POS systems. Before it was a total nightmare experience!”

He states, “The POS system provided by POSitive Technologies can help the restaurant owner by providing both of these calculations. Additionally, the POS system has all the reporting requirements the IRS requires. The restaurant can also move charge tips to the paychecks, so the restaurant does not have to pay out the credit card tips in cash to the employees at end of each shift.”

Dave then talks a little about the most recent ruling on tip pooling. “In a 2016 ruling, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals claimed that western based establishments cannot include “back of house” employees in their tip pools if the state allows a tip credit against the minimum wage. However, tip credits are illegal under Oregon and Washington law, but this ruling has put a damper on this procedure. Establishments are getting away from tip pooling.”

In conclusion, the restaurant owner must withhold and pay the taxes on reported tip income. However, the owner does get a tax credit equal to the matching portion of the FICA paid on the reported tip income.

We want to thank Dave for answering our questions, please contact him if you want more clarification at david@pcapdx.com or call him at 503-238-0621.

 

 

Posted by Kelsey on June 14th, 2017

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99.99% “Four Nines” Network Reliability by Cradlepoint

Restaurants face several challenges with regards to network reliability and require “four-nines” reliability. “Four nines” means the network is up and operating 99.99% of the time. If the network or the internet is down the restaurant cannot process credit cards and remain PCI compliant.

POSitive Technologies has partnered with Cradlepoint to provide this level of network reliability and security. In the event the internet does go down, the Cradlepoint router with “Intelligent Failover” technology automatically switches over to (3G/4G wireless) cellular service to provide uninterrupted credit card processing. 

Cradlepoint 4G LTE also helps by securing the network against outside threats. Sophisticated security protocols and a stateful (network) firewall combined with Trend Micro and Zscaler are purpose built for PCI compliance, a requirement for credit card processing.

Cradlepoint also allows for monitoring, configuration, and upgrades remotely through a browser from anywhere. No longer requiring onsite technical resources to adjust settings or perform updates. Additionally, Cradlepoint provides “multi-WAN” diversity. Combining both wired and wireless networks into a single Edge router reducing PCI scope, simplifying network complexity and offering new WAN selection tactics for greater flexibility.

To future proof your restaurant’s network, ensure credit card security and mitigate the risk of a data breach please contact POSitive Technologies your Cradlepoint value added partner.

Posted by Kelsey on June 14th, 2017

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Happy Client, Stone Cliff Inn Restaurant, Oregon City

A Study in Success: POSitive Technologies installed Restaurant Manager almost 2 years ago after Stone Cliff had a difficult experience with  another system.  The results have been positive for the establishment.

Stone Cliff Inn Restaurant & Bar – Sherie Rosenbaum, Co-Owner states, “Restaurants Manager’s DAILY reports are customized for just the data I need to see  and are emailed to me every night, making my life much easier! It allows me to always have my fingers on the pulse of what is going on in the restaurant.”

Executive Summary: Stone Cliff Inn creates a dining experience among the best of the Northwest has to offer. Nestled amid the old growth, in a backdrop of cliffs and huge basalt boulders in Oregon City, this restaurant is very highly regarded.

Challenges: Peter Morris, General Manager explains, “The previous POS terminals did not interface very well with the printers, which would cause the system to freeze up on a regular basis. Also, it was not user-friendly. The service from the previous company was almost non-existent and promises were not kept.”

How Product Helped: POSitive Technologies installed Restaurant Manager and has established an excellent  relationship with the   client. Morris states, “Restaurant Manager is easy to work with and has great day-to-day functionality. We are excited to learn  more about all the bell whistles.” He continues, “The system is easy for new servers to learn, which gets them being productive quickly. And the  company, POSitive Technologies is fantastic to work with. I’ve had to contact them at off-hours, but they immediately responded and came to our  assistance.”

Results, Return on Investment and Future Plans: Stone Cliff is pleased with the system and is anxious to learn more about all the new functions  that are now available to them, that were never before.

Posted by Kelsey on June 8th, 2017

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