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Store Audits for Capital Planning

Posted By Jeff Dover, CRFP, RFMA, Wednesday, July 19, 2017
Updated: Monday, June 19, 2017

Hello RFMA members,

How does your company prepare its facilities capital plan? There are numerous ways it can be done but yearly on site store audits are a great way to collect what is needed for the short and long term. These should be completed at least once a year per restaurant location. A good, thorough audit will take 4-8 hours to complete and compile into a database program. The store audit needs to be comprehensive enough to include existing conditions of major equipment, building, parking lot, sidewalks, roofs, etc. Project prioritizing is a must showing the estimated time frame of when the project needs to be completed or equipment replaced and the estimated cost. Assigning one(1), two(2), or three(3) year periods for when the project is required is generally accepted. This enables the financial decision makers a proper view of what the actual needs are for the next 1-3 years. This also is needed when negotiations start in determining the budget.The store audits also provide an opportunity for FM's to complete emergency items that directly affect customer and employee safety along with Brand protection. These items may have been missed by store operations in the day to day running of the restaurant. Photos need to be taken for all items included in the audit showing existing conditions.

When all the  audits are finished, they can be rolled up into a program that needs the flexibility to sort many different ways. It has to be able to produce reports on overall capital requirements, regional needs, specific projects, and priorities. The data then can be provided to the Financial department for their review and input and then the negotiations can start on what projects stay and which ones can be deferred. Going by historical spending is a fairly inefficient way to produce yearly plans. Audits always will provide a clearer direction for exactly what is needed and when.

How does your company prepare its capital plan?

Dover and out.

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