randolph beer new york city brewpub

Image: Randolph Beer

Kyle Kensrue, Director of Operations at Randolph Beer, relies on Upserve POS and the restaurant management platform’s enhanced insights to:

  • Manage over 75 employees across three locations
  • Analyze data to make informed menu decisions and grow sales by 10%
  • Expand his business of brewpubs in New York City
  • Efficiently manage staff and save 3% in labor costs 

For nearly a decade, Kyle Kensrue has worked with multiple POS systems, but it wasn’t until he owned a business of his own that he had the chance to work with developers to build a POS tailor-made for his specific needs. 

“We’ve really been with Upserve since the beginning. We first worked with Groupon and developers to bring them up to speed on the restaurant industry and get them where we needed to be to operate as a company with Breadcrumb POS,” Kensrue explains. “Groupon wasn’t bad for a tech company, but definitely did not understand the hospitality business, so Upserve taking over and coming at it from not just a technology point of view, but also a hospitality point of view, was a welcome change.”

As Breadcrumb POS evolved into Upserve Restaurant POS, Kensrue and his team did some evolving of their own. After operating cocktail bars, Kyle and his team opened a beer bar, and years later, their original concept shifted into Randolph Beer: a multi-location brewpub with three locations throughout Brooklyn and Lower Manhattan.

“That’s kind of what we saw our future in: making large destination spots that are very neighborhood friendly, where we have a great food menu, have an awesome place to enjoy the food,” said Kensrue. “But ultimately, we’re making some fantastic beers.”

Kensrue shared why this multi-location brewpub continues to choose Upserve as they grow and expand through New York City.

 

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Home Sweet Home (Nolita side)

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How Upserve Helps Ease Managing Multiple Locations

As a director of operations, Kensrue touches many parts of the business at Randolph Beer. Besides managing over 75 people across three locations, Kensrue also serves as the Beer Director for the company, overseeing all beer operations. 

While managing a beer program is enough work for one person, managing people is another story. Kensure relies on Upserve to get his new employees up to speed.

“It’s always hard to manage employees that are sort of transient in nature, and that’s just the nature of the restaurant business, where you have two employees that work two days a week and four employees that work three days a week,” Kensrue explains. “So it’s trying to get them to believe in what we’re doing, and try and have them buy into the message of why we’re here in the same way that somebody who totally relies on us for their full-time job.”

Upserve’s Training Center allows for Kensrue to equip his team with the tools they need to succeed at Randolph Beer. With Kensrue training his team on Upserve’s platform in as little as 30 minutes, he is able to ensure that each employee can focus on the bigger picture.

“How do I follow these employees across the board promoting that same message? That if a guest comes into one Randolph are they getting the same experience across the board in the way that all employees trained and up to speed? Are all employees talking about the beer the same way? Is the quality of our food the same?” he explains. “Just making sure that the experience is the same across all three stores is a big one, especially as we want to grow.”

How Upserve’s Menu Optimization Tools Reduce Waste and Increase Sales by 10%

As Kensrue grew his team at Randolph Beer, he was faced with growing the operation as well. Just as challenging as it is to manage employees across three locations, managing operations can be just as difficult. With Upserve’s Menu Optimization and food costing tools, Kensrue and his team are able to identify winning menu items and ensure that no inventory goes to waste. 

 

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If we eat with our eyes, then that explains why mine just got bigger ??

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“If I launch them at all three locations is the clientele appreciating the new dishes the same way in each location? We like to think that 90 percent of our food menu is going to be the same, but are there items in that 10 percent that I need to pay attention to?” Kensrue explains. “For instance, we have a new tuna dish. Is that tuna dish going to sell at my Williamsburg location or am I just wasting product?” These questions are easily answered through Upserve’s robust sales analytics, giving Kensure the tools he needs to not only please his guests, but protect his bottom line. 

“We use Upserve to look at the numbers for what’s selling and what’s not,” Kensrue says. “We decide if it’s not selling, do we need to push it to the staff a different way or do some specials? Or is it just awesome and it’s selling itself?”

Start making data-driven menu decisions with help from Upserve’s Smart Menu Builder.

As a busy director of operations, the ability to compare sales and labor data across locations is essential. With Upserve, Kensrue can look at how each of his brewpubs are performing, identify areas of improvement, and increase sales by 10 percent every year.

“The biggest thing with Upserve is not having to sign out of one thing, and sign in to another thing,” he says. “Being able to jump between stores and compare store to store what’s selling, compare servers and what’s selling is huge.”

How Upserve’s Server Performance Tools Help Kensue Save 3% in Labor Costs

Beyond using Upserve’s sales analytics tools, Kensrue takes a deep dive into his team’s sales with Upserve’s Server Performance feature. With the tools in the restaurant management platform, he can look at what his servers—and managers—are selling and exactly how much of it. 

 

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Hump Days are better at our bar! See you at Happy Hour ? ? ? ? ? ?

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“Now we’re looking to see if our managers are doing more than just voiding comps,” Kensrue explains. “We’re paying attention to if they are actually bringing stuff in, touching tables, and upselling.”

As a brewpub with an extensive beer selection of homemade brews and other craft favorites, it can be challenging for a team to stay focused on what’s important to upsell when they get a new table in their section. With server performance insights, Kensrue can find out what his team is selling without setting foot on the dining room floor.

“We use Upserve to analyze if our team is selling our beers or are they selling a guest batch,” Kensrue explains. “We also look at if they are selling beer at all or if they are just being an order taker and not upselling the things that we’re asking them to upsell.”

By using Upserve’s tools to analyze staff performance and implement new strategies to train his team, Kensrue was able to increase sales at Randolph Beer 10 percent while increasing labor costs just 6.8 percent, saving over 3 percent in labor year-over-year.

Why Randolph Beer Continues to Choose Upserve

With so many point of sale options as a market, it can be overwhelming for a restaurant or bar to choose—and stick with—a system that works for them. From the data analytics to menu optimization, Randolph Beer is invested in the power of Upserve POS.

“I’ve used Aloha, MICROS, and POSiTouch. What I like about Upserve is it has a user-friendly interface, and it’s fairly easy to pick up and get moving,” Kensrue explains. “And if you want to get nerdy and get in-depth and kind of picky on the back end you can, but just to get moving and kind of get operating, it doesn’t take a whole army to come in and get you set up.”

As a three location brewpub with a growth mindset, Kensrue and his team at Randolph Beer get up and running in no time with Upserve’s fully integrated platform.

“If you’re opening a new location or a new business, the POS system shouldn’t be a five-day venture.”

To learn more about Randolph Beer, visit randolphbeer.com or follow @RandolphBeer on Instagram.

Find out how to increase sales by 10% in your restaurant with Upserve POS!

Written by   |  
Holly Everett is a five-year restaurant industry veteran turned small business marketing specialist. After working at Seven Stars Bakery in Providence, Rhode Island throughout college, she entered the world of marketing where she led B2B marketing initiatives at companies focusing on growing small businesses. At Upserve, she integrates her passion for the restaurant industry and knowledge of the needs of small business owners to help make restaurants wildly successful.