Overview of the process to get started
We have attempted to make getting started in Backbar as easy as possible. However in order to get value from Backbar there are some steps you will need to do to get your data into our system. While it can seem tedious and take a bit of time, we promise it will be well worth it once you are up and running. You'll have more data at your fingertips, be able to do inventory faster, more quickly place and track orders, and better train your staff. This article provides an overview of the important steps you'll want to take.
Adding inventory locations (areas)
The first step after setting up your account is to input your inventory locations. Think of this as any place within your establishment where you take inventory and where it makes sense to count and/or report on inventory separately. If you already use spreadsheets for counting inventory, this may be the different columns in your spreadsheet where you enter your counts for each item. You can create locations and sublocations for better organization and reporting. Some example locations might be: wine cellar, liquor room, front bar, beer coolers, etc...
Uploading your existing inventory spreadsheet
This is the most important step and also the most time consuming. Uploading your existing inventory spreadsheet gets all of your items and information into Backbar so you can see your beverage performance, take inventory, educate staff and much more.
Uploading your spreadsheet first requires a mapping process to map the columns on your spreadsheet to the equivalent field names in Backbar. After the fields are mapped, each drink (wine, beer, or spirit) item on your spreadsheet must be mapped to a specific item in the Backbar database or otherwise added as a new drink. We attempt to match the item name from your spreadsheet to our database automatically, but it is often difficult for most items as spreadsheets often contain abbreviations, shorthand or limited information (such as wine vintages missing). While it takes time to go through each of your items to find a match, it is very important to the functionality of Backbar. By matching all your items, you can:
- Quickly find items in Backbar by searching on drink attributes (style/varietal, color, type, etc...)
- Filter and order your inventory and menu by drink attributes
- Segment reports based on drink attributes
- Provide education and training to staff (our database includes tasting notes, images and more)
Any items you do not find a match for can still be added, but will not have complete information until reviewed by our beverage team. Also note, if you do not have time to complete the matching process all in one go, you can continue from where you left off at any time.
Invite other users
If there are other people in your establishment who help with inventory or ordering, you should invite these users to help you setup your account. It's always nice to share the workload, right? You can set the roles for these users to admin or manager.
In addition to inviting other admins or managers, once you have your items loaded into Backbar you should also invite all of your wait staff and bartenders as users. These users can access materials to become better educated on your offerings, such as reading tasting notes or learning where products are from.
Setting up and assigning vendors
Backbar makes it fast to place orders with vendors and track those orders, but first there are some things to setup. First you need to add all of your vendors along with your sales rep's contact information (where you want the order to be sent). Then you must assign each of your items to the correct vendor. The best way to do this is from the Orders > Build Orders page, which allows you to assign items in bulk to a vendor using the Actions menu.
Take a test drive of inventory
Backbar provides a way to test and experience the interface for counting your inventory, both on the web and mobile. You can use sample data to practice taking inventory counts to get familiar with the interface and how best to use it before you start your first real inventory session.