“I would recommend Nory to anybody as a result of the level of service that we received.”
Hartshorn – Hook is an entertainment company that was started 16 years ago by Louis Hartshorn and Brian Hook. In 2021, the company launched a food and beverage arm to the business, opening two separate sites in Camden Market.
The first is a pub restaurant called The Farrier, serving small plates of great-quality pub food. The second is a rooftop cocktail bar called The Lucky Club, providing customers with a fun destination venue and delicious margaritas (including frozen ones in the summer).
Let’s take a look at some of the challenges Hartshorn – Hook was facing before they found Nory.
Lacking real-time oversight of business performance
One of their main hurdles was accessing real-time insights into business performance.
Their previous tools (MarketMan and Sling) didn’t provide real-time updates. By the time they could access the information, it was too late to make tweaks or adjustments to improve performance.
They also couldn’t create real-time reports to analyse key insights about the business.
“I was waiting about two months after the month’s end to see how the business was doing. It meant that we couldn’t react anywhere near quick enough to make a difference.” George Hartshorn, Food and Beverage Director
Struggling to deliver a seamless employee journey
Stellar staff retention is one of the things Hartshorn – Hook is proudest of, but they were facing challenges with certain aspects of the employee journey.
Onboarding, for example, was a problematic area. Their scheduling software (Sling) was difficult to use which caused major issues with staff engagement, because as George Hartshorn, Food and Beverage Director put it: “when something doesn’t work, people don’t want to spend time trying to figure it out.”
The other big issue was a lack of visibility over operations. Hartshorn Hook attempted to use MarketMan as their inventory management tool – but it didn’t fulfil their needs. They needed software that would integrate with other systems and give them true visibility, and therefore control over what was happening day-to-day.
Dealing with unexpected hurdles
Hartshorn – Hook struggled to protect the business against unexpected challenges, like the transport strikes in London. Strikes cause less footfall around their locations and prevent staff from getting to work.
Because the strikes occur so last minute, it’s hard for the business to adapt.
“We trade in Camden Market, which is heavily reliant on tourism and footfall. If there’s a day where the market is dead, we really suffer as a result.”
Using multiple platforms to access sales and performance data
Before Nory, Hartshorn – Hook found themselves jumping between different platforms and spreadsheets to access sales, staff scheduling and inventory management.
George would spend hours trying to pinpoint and consolidate data to understand how the business was performing in terms of cost of labour, waste, forecast GP versus actual GP — and how to improve it. Not to mention, analysing this data for different restaurant concepts made the job even harder.
Here are some of the ways we’ve helped Hartshorn – Hook overcome their challenges and make improvements across the entire business.
“Nory gives us real-time reporting for the business. We can make informed decisions because we know exactly where the business is at. This has been the most important thing as we guide our business into growth.”
Real-time insights improve control and enable hour-to-hour decision making
Nory’s partnership with Lightspeed (POS system) gives Hartshorn – Hook full oversight of its real-time performance. They can now make fast, strategic decisions about how to grow and develop the business.
“We’ve never noticed that there’s an integration. It always pulls through exactly as it should and the data matches up, which is fantastic.”
Take a look at some of the other real-time features that helped Hartshorn – Hook improve their business and increase their profits:
- Real-time P&L reporting — Hartshorn – Hook has 360° insights into their business performance. From menu sales to LTO, they can create and share reports that highlight the most valuable insights at a single glance.
- Labour productivity— Restaurant managers track labour productivity with Nory, ensuring that staff are maximising their time and skills as efficiently as possible. Nory also offers recommendations on how to improve productivity across the business. Since using Nory, the restaurant has controlled labour costs to within 3.8% variance.
- Higher GP — Hartshorn – Hook tracks food usage and predicts future orders to meet customer demand and minimise food waste. As a result, they spend less money on food items they don’t need, and increase their profit margins in the process! Using Nory, they’ve been able to control the variance between their actual GP and their target GP to within 2%.
Improve the employee journey
Hartshorn – Hook’s staff are now amazed at the onboarding process, a far cry from where they were before using Nory. They get their contract before their first day of work, and all their details are on the system before they start.
Nory also makes it easy for existing employees to use the HR software. In a matter of clicks, they can access payroll information, request shift swaps, and book time off.
“We’re a relatively small business, so we don’t have the same resources as a large group. But Nory allows us to implement a really smooth onboarding.”
Become more agile and adaptable
Since using Nory, Hartshorn – Hook has improved its operations, streamlined its processes, and generated more sales.
They have more flexibility in managing their workforce, and more income to fall back on when footfall decreases. This means they can be more agile and adaptable to changing marketing conditions.
Consolidate technology with Nory
Hartshorn – Hook no longer has to flick between different platforms to analyse restaurant data. Instead, they head to Nory to access their key insights from different locations at a single glance. The restaurant can now process information quickly and make fast, smart decisions.
“Being able to go to one place to find all of the information you need is important. It helps you make fast and informed decisions about your business.”
What’s next for Hartshorn – Hook?
Armed with Nory’s features, Hartshorn – Hook aims to continue growing year-on-year. One of their main focuses is their people, including how to attract, retain, and develop the right staff to help the business grow.
“There was a real feeling that the Nory team wanted to get us up and running quickly. Not so that they completed their job, but so that we could start seeing the benefits. They didn’t just give us a tool, they provided us with the training to leverage it properly and run a more efficient business.”
Want to find out more about how Nory can help your restaurant grow? Get in touch with the team!