In this HowTo we're going to show you how you can automate group requests in aleno and with that save a lot of valuable time.
In order to efficiently process and automate group requests, you need a written, standardized offer for groups with all important informations like menu variations, prices, deadlines and contractual conditions. You then can make this offer available to your guests as a PDF file or online form, e.g. on your website, via Dropbox or GoogleDrive.
In aleno choose Menu -> Settings -> E-mail -> Group Requests. If you then activate group requests in the shift settings, the displayed email will be sent to the guest automatically. Customize the email template to your needs and style. Your text should contain a link to your standardized offer for groups as well as information about further procedures and deadlines.
The settings for group requests can be set separately for each shift, e.g. if you only want to receive groups during the evening shift. You can edit, activate or deactivate group requests via Menu -> Settings -> Shifts -> Specific shift -> Edit group requests settings.
By using many different parameters you can lead incoming group requests to your individual conditions through customizing your group settings. First you choose the minimum number of guests for your banquet offer, then the maximum number of guests you want to host as a group. You should make sure that there are no gaps between à la carte and group reservations.
Aleno customers often accept common reservations for up to 10 people, group requests for 11-30 people. In this example, reservations with less than 11 guests are processed as standard reservations accordingly.
Online reservation requests for more than 50 guests will not be accepted and the guest will automatically be notified.
Depending on the restaurant, kitchen staff and service staff quickly reach their limits when several banquets are held simultaneously. Therefore in aleno you can also set the maximum number of groups you would like to host per shift. If you enter 3 here, aleno will no longer accept group requests for banquets of 3 or more.
Although banquets are expected to generate a high turnover, high-maintenance is needed and they also carry the risk of short-term cancellations or lack of definite confirmation. The then redundant seats are hard to be filled again. In aleno you can therefore specify how many days in advance of the desired banquet date you would like to accept a group request. For example, if you enter 5, a group request will only be accepted online if it is made 5 days or more in advance.
Now you can enter a term, e.g. "banquet", in the field "Category for group requests". Using the search function and this term you can then swiftly and easily view all past and future group requests.
You will have a better overview and can select a needed contact of the group inquiries, write to them specifically and win them over early for your restaurant, e.g. you can promote a special Christmas banquet the following year.