Restaurant Manager Duties That Are Critical to Success




  • Restaurant managers are responsible for day-to-day restaurant operations.
  • Restaurant manager duties include inventory and vendor management, training staff members, and marketing.
  • Customer service and problem-solving skills are crucial to customer satisfaction and the restaurant manager’s success.

Restaurant managers are responsible for the daily management of the restaurant and ensuring a smooth operation between all touchpoints of the establishment. From inventory management and menu planning to customer service and conflict resolution for staff and customers, restaurant manager duties are critical to a restaurant’s success.

A Shortlist of Restaurant Manager Duties

The restaurant manager drives a restaurant’s success. While the manager’s responsibilities are vast and vary between different restaurants, they’re often the heart and backbone of the business. In essence, they are responsible for bringing the restaurant’s mission statement to life.

In this article, we’ll run through some specific responsibilities included in a restaurant manager’s job description.

Hire and train staff

Recruiting, hiring, and training staff are some of the most critical responsibilities of a restaurant manager. A talented and experienced team will help a restaurant thrive, and knowing what to look for when hiring your staff will ensure long-term success.

Restaurant manager duties can impact employee turnover. Employee turnover is one of the restaurant industry’s biggest challenges. According to The National Restaurant Association, the turnover rate in hospitality was 70 percent in 2018. In the restaurant industry, some turnover is unavoidable — for example, younger employees will need to return to school after the summer.

However, you can maximize staff retention by hiring the right employees and training them to succeed. Manager responsibilities for staffing include:

  • Recruiting new employees and filling open positions
  • Training new employees on roles and responsibilities including day-to-day operations and customer service
  • Developing, implementing, and enforcing policies for the restaurant staff
  • Providing excellent management skills with constructive feedback
  • Creating schedules and reporting
  • Coordinating a seamless operation between front of house and back of house

Recognize and reward good work

Ensuring staff are happy in this demanding job can reduce turnover. When you think of happiness drivers, you might first think of pay increases and promotions. While that’s certainly true, employees are also motivated by management recognition. Public appreciation in front of the rest of the staff or awards like employee of the month can go a long way to increase employee morale.

A happy staff also leads to happy customers. Managers are also responsible for customer satisfaction at your restaurant, and properly trained and satisfied staff are more likely to give excellent service. By caring for staff, the manager mitigates the likelihood of customer issues before they even happen. Creating a positive atmosphere in your establishment nurtures customer loyalty and brings in new business.

Deliver excellent customer service

Server takes order from a smiling group of patrons

A restaurant manager is the face of the restaurant and functions as the primary problem solver. The goal is always to provide excellent customer service, especially if you have great staff.

Communication skills and resolving issues as they happen are critical to retaining customers and getting new ones. That’s because customers leave reviews potential customers will read. According to an OpenTable report, 12.5% of diners will post a review after their meal, and 33% of patrons won’t eat at restaurants with ratings lower than four stars on websites like Yelp and TripAdvisor. Resolving problems quickly can help make or break the future business.

Loyalty programs are a great way to increase customer satisfaction and encourage retention. Restaurant POS platform Toast wrote guests pay 46% more with loyalty programs. They also report that by increasing retention by 5%, you can build profitability by 75%. There are many ways to build loyalty programs, whether it’s a points system through your restaurant management software or a simple approach like punch cards often used by coffee shops.

Reviews, technology, and loyalty programs aside, there is still nothing better than positive face-to-face interaction and paying attention to customer’s needs. Finding the balance between all of your customer touchpoints will ensure high customer satisfaction at your restaurant.

Manager duties for customer service include:

  • Creating an inviting and accommodating dining experience for customers
  • Ensuring the staff provides top-notch food and beverage service to customers
  • Addressing customer concerns and respond to customer complaints with resolution
  • Managing reward programs to retain customer loyalty

Even when following these principles, it’s common to have an unhappy customer here and there. Don’t be too hard on yourself when that happens — it’s just the business.

Extend the restaurant’s reach with marketing and social media

Restaurant managers are often responsible for the business’s marketing efforts both offline and online. Whether it’s creating gift cards and promotional flyers, or developing content and engaging with customers on social media, the restaurant manager drives the voice and image of your restaurant. Digital tools and social media platforms make it easier than ever to engage with existing customers and help you reach new ones.

A strong social media presence is essential, especially when attracting new customers. A recent study tells us that 45% of diners in the United States have tried a new restaurant because of social media. Posts with drool-worthy photos and timely information like nightly specials can help get customers in the door.

If you have limited photo assets, you can tap into user-generated content by reposting patrons’ photos with their permission. Sharing your customers’ photos also helps encourage future diners to snap and share pictures.

Managerial marketing responsibilities often include:

  • Managing the social media channels for the restaurant, including platforms like Instagram and Facebook
  • Developing content assets like photography and video to promote the restaurant
  • Using customer service skills to manage the reputation of your business online and offline
  • Monitoring reviews on review websites like Yelp, Google, and TripAdvisor, and responding to negative reviews where necessary

Manage inventory, vendors, and menu planning

Employee training, customer service, and marketing are essential, but what happens behind the scenes is just as critical. Restaurant managers are responsible for ordering the inventory, managing the inventory budget, and nurturing relationships with the restaurant’s vendors. Experienced restaurant managers will work closely with the chef or kitchen manager to develop the restaurant menu and ensure the inventory orders align with the menu.

Inventory management and operating costs are often a pain point for restaurants, so this is a big responsibility for managers. In Toast’s State of the Industry Report 2019, they report 51% of restaurant owners name high operating and food costs as one of their biggest challenges.

Inventory and vendor management for restaurant managers can include:

  • Identifying and fulfilling food and beverage needs as well as other restaurant inventory like cleaning products and kitchen equipment
  • Providing inventory control and financial management to keep costs at a minimum
  • Managing vendors, ensuring food quality, and developing new vendor relationships as needed

Pared Makes Restaurant Management Easier

Restaurant manager duties: Two smiling servers looking at tablet

The manager of a restaurant has many responsibilities, and duties often depend on the type of restaurant and leadership style of the owner and general manager. Typical restaurant manager responsibilities include staffing and training, inventory management and food ordering, customer service, and marketing. But no matter the restaurant, the manager is responsible for ensuring a smooth day-to-day business operation.

Here at Pared, we believe a successful restaurant comes down to the staff behind it. We started Pared to help make restaurant life easier. So if you’re a restaurant manager looking for staff as you build our dream team, we’re here for you so you’ll never be short-staffed again.

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