Variance Groups

An explanation of variance groups, how to create them, and how to view them.

Nick Neale avatar
Written by Nick Neale
Updated over a week ago

Note About Variance Groups

Variance groups existed before item variations were introduced in WISK. This was the old way of seeing a combined variance if you had items that came in multiple sizes / formats. For example, if you had an item that came in a 750ml and 1L format, you could group them together on the Variance page.

Now you can just make them item variations if they are used interchangeably in the same menu items.

To learn more, see:

However, there are still some cases where a Variance Group may be a better option, for example if you have an item in a 750ml and 1L format, but they are used in different menu items most of the time. Having them in a Variance group can account for situations where their usage is mixed (If you run out of the 1L format, and use some from the 750ml).

You can also use Variance Groups to quickly group and isolate specific items that you want to compare. For example, you could create a variance group for "Bar Rail" to quickly pull up those items.

Article Contents


Variance groups allow you to create sub-groups of your items when looking at variances. The main uses of this feature are:

  1. If you have multiple SKUs of an item that are different sizes (for example Grey Goose 750ml, and 1L) and are used interchangeably with your POS Items

  2. If you want to quickly view the variances on a group of items (example, all of your bar rail items)

For example, say you carry a 1L Grey Goose for all of your mixed drinks, but then also carry 750ml Grey Goose exclusively for bottle service. Your supplier doesn't have any 1L at this time and you've run out of stock. Because of this, you need to use the 750ml bottle in your mixed drinks until you get more of the 1L.

Since all of your POS Items and recipe mapping for mixed drinks is tied to the 1L bottle, you’re going to see sales for the 1L bottle, but consumption for the 750ml bottle.

Creating a variance group allows you to get around this issue without having to change any of your recipe mapping.

With the variance group, you’ll be able to see the sales, consumption, and variance for the whole group.

Note: You can also manually reconcile these values. The variance group just brings them together in a way that's easy to see.

Creating a Variance Group

  1. Click on Reports / Analytics > Variance on the left-hand menu bar

    The "Variance" button on the side menu bar is highlighted
  2. Click Actions > Manage Variance Groups

    The "Actions" button is highlighted and an arrow points to "Manage Variance Groups"
  3. Click “New Variance Group”

    An arrow points to the "New Variance Group" button
  4. Give the Variance Group a title, then click “Save”

    An arrow points to the "Save" button
  5. Click into the “Add WISK Item” field and type the name of an item to add it to the variance group. Select it from the drop-down list

    The "Add WISK Item" area is highlighted for emphasis.

  6. Click the checkmark to add the item to the variance group

    An arrow points to the checkmark button to add the item

  7. The item is added to the variance group. Continue to add other items as needed. In this example, we’ve added both sizes of Grey Goose that we have in our venue

    The Variance group as all the different sizes of Grey Goose added to it

  8. Click the “X” button to close the window. You’ll see the group in your list of variance groups. Create other groups as needed

    The Variance group with all the items added to it displays

Viewing a Variance Group

After creating your variance groups, you can view them by using the “Variance Groups” predefined filter.

The "Variance Groups" filer is highlighted for emphasis.

When toggled on, it displays your items that are in variance groups:

All of the items that are part of a variance group display.

To help sort the items, you can use the "Family > Category" view, but for the best results you should create your own custom view.

An arrow points to the "Family > Category" view

Customizing your View

The default columns display sales, consumption, and variance in units. If you have a variance group that has the same item, but in different sizes, you’ll want to display those in ounces or the item's unit of measurement.

We recommend creating a new view for this, so you easily compare your items each time you look at your Variance groups.

  1. On the View selector window, click "Add View"

    An arrow points to the "Add View" button

  2. Name the view “Variance Groups” and click “OK”

    An arrow points to the "OK" button
  3. The view is created and now it's time to customize it. Click "Grouping"

    An arrow points to the "Grouping" tab
  4. Click “Group by" then select "Variance Group" from the drop-down list

    The "Group by" button is highlighted and an arrow points to "Variance Group"
  5. Click “Columns” to toggle on either (oz) or (UM) for Sales, Consumption, and Variance. You can also toggle off the “units” version of those columns. You can drag and drop to re-arrange the column order

    The columns to view Sales, Consumption and Variance in ozs are toggled on.

  6. You’ll now see the total sales, consumption, and variance for all items in the variance group.

    The overall sales, consumption, and variance for the variance group display.

In the example above, we see that for our Grey Goose group, we sold 251.78oz worth overall, and then the consumption is the sum of the two sizes (202.88+54.10) which totals 256.99oz.

In this case, our variance for Grey Goose across all sizes is:

Sales - Consumption = Variance

251.78oz - 256.99oz = -5.21oz

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