While developing an inventory management system for a restaurant, you need to:
- Understand the restaurant’s operations: You need to understand how the restaurant you are creating an inventory management system for operates. You need to understand what its inputs are, what its outputs are, how its supplies come in, how its output stock goes out… and so on.
- Design the inventory management system’s front-end: This is the part of the inventory management system that the end-users are to interact with directly. So this is where you create the data entry screens, the database querying forms, the reports formats… and so on. The most important thing here is to ensure that what you come up with is user-friendly, and is something that even people with modest IT skills can work with.
- Create the inventory management system’s back-end: At this stage, the main task is to create the database to power the inventory management system. If you are using a RDBMS system, you create the tables, the columns, the rows (records) and so on. Then you ensure that the back-end connects to the front-end seamlessly. The end result should ideally be a robust system – you know, something similar to GM’s global connect portal.
- Test the inventory management system properly: You should first test the system on your own computer, before proceeding to test it in the ‘Live’ environment within the restaurant where it is to be used. And should you discover that there are some issues with the inventory management system [during the testing phase], you need to have them resolved before proceeding.
- Deploy the inventory management system: This is the stage where the inventory management system actually starts being used in the restaurant’s day to day operations. The most important thing here is adequate training. Ensure that the staff members who are to work with the inventory management system are properly trained on its use, before they start using it in the ‘Live’ environment.