Nathan Young, of JT Walker’s Restaurant and Champaign County Brewing Company, has always had a personal interest in innovative technology. With a family history of SMBs, his roles have always evolved around the idea of small business, with everyone contributing towards the business’s success. It’s with this role that Nathan came to address Champaign County Brewing Company’s need for a POS system.
A brewpub with local flavor
Champaign County Brewing Company, an offshoot of JT Walker’s Restaurant, places an emphasis on locally-sourced ingredients. “It’s a microbrewery in every sense of the word,” Nathan told me. The brewpub is housed in a small building, and employs a four-person crew. Coinciding with the brewpub’s emphasis on local, Champaign County Brewing Company’s head brewer grows his own hops, and the master brewer--as well as the owner--are from the area. Located in the downtown of Mahomet, Illinois, the brewpub is local in every sense of the word.
Beer + food trucks = brewpub success
Champaign County Brewing Company is first and foremost a brewpub. Instead of selling food to complement their fine brews, JT Walker’s has partnered up with a rotating fleet of food trucks. Patrons can place their orders from inside the brewpub, which will then be printed directly to the food truck. The vendors will bring the food in once it’s ready. “People don’t have to get up and walk outside, or wait in line,” Nathan said. “This is all possible because we have a mobile, cloud-based solution. We’ve been able to bring that together all in one unit.”
Why Revel was the best choice
After over one hundred hours of research, Nathan landed on Revel. He wasn’t interested in legacy POS systems, which required a heavy investment in hardware and were costly to set up. They also required an ‘all or nothing approach’--that is, “You had to buy the whole oil tanker or nothing” as Nathan stated. He liked how Revel gave him the ability to pick and choose the features he needed, and “turn off” the features he didn’t.
The results: 3 major benefits
Minimal training: “I didn’t need to train [the staff] to get it,” Nathan said. He even noticed staff members finding spontaneous and ingenious uses for the iPad POS--some customers were asking how much a t-shirt was, and the bartender grabbed the iPad and was able to immediately pull up the brewpub’s t-shirt inventory. “He had all the info right there,” said Nathan. The bartender used the iPad to look up prices, and to show the customers the image gallery of high-resolution photos of their t-shirts. He had all that capability with the iPad, without having to be told about it. “I have something mobile I can use in all these different ways. It came intuitively, and this is why this is the best solution ever.”
Ability to integrate: Revel has the “ability to integrate the different things I need.” As a business owner, Nathan has the ability to incorporate the features he needs--such as ingredient-level inventory, reporting, and employee scheduling--and skip the ones he doesn’t. “Having the option [to turn features on or off] is a safety net,” Nathan said.
Customer service: “The customer service experience has been really impressive,” Nathan told me. “It’s been great in general, and especially impressive in the sense that [Revel] has been going through a rapid growth cycle, and even with that I feel like people have been scrambling to get me help even when no one is available. It’s nice for me that I can on these guys that will do whatever it takes to make sure my problem is solved.” Nathan was also impressed with how quickly Revel rolls out new updates and minor fixes, and described the experience as “awesome!”