26 July 2017, Smart Zones
The Cross Keys in Rowde, Wiltshire is one of 162 leased and tenanted pubs owned by regional brewer Wadworth, and had iDraught – Vianet’s beer quality and waste system – installed at the beginning of 2017. As well a raft of other benefits, tenant Kelly Dodsworth said the system had made a huge difference to the business in a short period of time and already saved her £1,000-a-month in avoiding wasted beer.
The Cross Keys is Kelly’s first tenancy, taking on the pub just over a year ago, and she brings to it 16 years’ industry experience. She describes the village pub as “a thriving entertainment business in the heart of a beautiful rural setting”. From food and drink to a sun-trap beer garden and popular function room, the pub is an important social venue for the locals in which to relax and enjoy friendly company.
Wadworth’s trade beer quality manager Su Stafford says head office is keen to get across to its tenants that its approach and focus on beer quality can help them improve retail standards and, in turn, increase profitability. Vianet’s iDraught solution reinforces the company’s approach by providing tenants with hard data that proves the theory.
After iDraught was installed in January, Kelly received Vianet training via video conference – which she says was “very useful” – to get her up and running. She now logs into the iDraught system regularly – via both the website and her smartphone app – which provides visibility on which products sell well, and identify those that don’t. Indeed, it helped Kelly spot that sales of a particular cider were poor, which enabled her in turn to replace it with one that she says now “flies out the door”.
Kelly says: “It’s good to see at the end of the week what our biggest sellers have been, which helps with stock-taking and re-ordering.” The pub’s stock-taker uses iDraught, too. Push alerts via the app also let Kelly keep tabs on yields, cellar temperatures and line cleaning performance, and she knows exactly when and how her bar staff are pouring pints.
Significantly, Kelly believes iDraught saved her thousands of pounds earlier this year by alerting her to yield issues and the pint-pouring practise of her bar team. This meant she was able to act quickly and put in place measures to avoid wastage. The improvements brought about by iDraught have also had a positive knock-on effect when it comes to cask-loving Kelly’s eagerness to achieve quality accreditations; she has recently completed Cask Marque training.
“It’s a great system, and I think it would be particularly useful for those licensees who are new to the industry. They could really get a lot out of it, and it would help them and their businesses get up-to-speed more quickly.”