Interview: Bri Holm, Manager, Channel Partner, Restaurant365 

Nate Lozier
Nate Lozier
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Bri Holm

Manager, Channel Partner


Bri Holm is the Manager of Channel Partners at Restaurant365 and the driving force behind channel partner sales. Starting as an Account Executive and now leading a burgeoning team, Bri embodies the mission of “Helping Restaurants Grow.”

Pinar Alptunaer

Partner Marketing Manager


Pinar Alptunaer is Partner Marketing Manager at Restaurant365, managing relationships with accounting channel and strategic partners. Pinar also manages sponsorships for R365 events like the Restaurant Transformation Tour. With over 20 years of experience working in the hospitality industry, she continues to keep her finger on the pulse by working The Masters Golf Tournament for the past 11 years. A New Orleans native, Pinar grew up between the United States and Istanbul, engraining her love of all things food and hospitality.

Bri, joining the Restaurant365 team and working towards "helping restaurants grow” sounds like an exciting journey. Can you share the specific moment or event that ignited your passion and made you say, "This is where I want to make a difference"? Can you share your journey after joining R365 to now?
Very ironically, I left the world of medical software & joined R365 in January of 2020, roughly 10-weeks prior to the start of COVID. I began my journey here as an Account Executive working directly with current + prospective accounting firms. As I was learning about their businesses & telling prospective partners about how R365 could drive efficiency for their clients, I developed a quick passion for helping their businesses grow. Seeing how these professionals cared more about their client's success than they did their own bottom line in some cases was unexpected. I quickly realized how much passion there is in the restaurant industry, and if you’re going to be an accountant in this space, you have to have that same passion for your client’s business. My love for R365 & the partners grew quickly. I knew this would be home for me for a long time moving forward.

I worked exclusively as an Account Executive for the Channel Partner Sales Team from January 2020 to December 2021. At that point, I stepped into a leadership role & began my journey as the Manager of Channel Partner Sales in January of 2022. In 2022 I worked a dual role where I was still acting as an Account Executive for my partners, while leading my small, but mighty, team. As of January 2023, I have stepped into an exclusive leadership role & have grown my team from 1 to 6 Account Executives in the last 6-months.
I’d love to hear a real-world scenario where Restaurant365 improved an accounting firm's operations. Can you share a remarkable success story that showcases R365’s platform's impact on a channel partner business model?
We have so many amazing success stories with our channel partners, it’s honestly hard to pinpoint just one. Whether it being helping firms like OCRA triple their client base while having the same amount of headcount, or Paperchase landing their dream client by taking advantage of our partner marketing benefits, I’ve seen some amazing growth from our firms while working with R365.
When accounting firms and their restaurant clients start using Restaurant365, they often discover unexpected benefits. Can you share some of these benefits and perhaps some unique ways the platform has positively impacted their day-to-day operations?
The name of the game for us is obviously efficiency – how can we make an accountant's life easier every day they come to work. While we help identify ways our software can do that with each individual firm, it is important to note that we have a team of individuals spanning from our Account Executives to our Partner Success Managers who are solely dedicated to our accounting firms. This allows us to be more hands on with our partners, which I find is oftentimes an unexpected benefit as new partners come on board. We aren’t in the business of throwing software at you & hoping it sticks. We have a group of passionate individuals here who really want to see our partners succeed, and that’s really awesome to be a part of.
Working closely with accounting firms, you must have a front row seat as they achieve growth and success. From your perspective, what is the most exciting part about partnering with these firms? Is there a particular aspect or accomplishment that gives you a sense of fulfillment?
Being a true partner means celebrating the success of those that you partner with. It is incredible watching our firms grow in the restaurant space, especially when they verbalize the role that R365 had in that growth. I love going on LinkedIn & seeing a, “We’re Growing!” status update from one of our firms as they post about a job opening. Watching partners land a dream client due to their affiliation with R365 is pretty up there too.
Restaurant365's platform offers a multitude of impressive features, but if you had to pick just one that has the "wow" factor, which would it be and why? I’d love to hear about a standout feature that can truly impact our partner’s business.
I have a bit of recenscy bias on this answer, but I am REALLY excited about our Intelligence tool that is being rolled out as we speak. Having an intelligence tool within R365 really sets us apart & further solidifies our product as being #1 for restaurants. I also believe that our AP Center & the way we manage the AP cycle within R365 really streamlines the workflow of accountants using our software.
The restaurant industry is known for being fast-paced yet slow to adopt technology. How does Restaurant365 help accounting firms keep up with the ever-evolving demands and challenges in this industry while remaining at the forefront of technology?
I love this question because I talk about the importance of staying on top of technology often with prospective partners who are evaluating our program. It seems like with every passing year, technology gets quicker & smarter. While your current system might suffice for the basic P&L reports you are providing your clients, restaurants are looking for accounting firms who provide them with more information than just a P&L. As technology evolves & more firms move onto R365, those who don’t will be left with generic systems that don’t cater towards their restaurant clients. If you aren’t providing your clients with tangible, real-time data, they are more likely to hop on over to the firm next door that is. When you have a system like R365 that is constantly investing in their product & rolling out new features, you can stay ahead of the curve with your clients & provide them with the data they need to thrive.
By leveraging powerful analytics, Restaurant365 empowers accounting firms to support their restaurant clients with real-time data-driven insights. Can you share some pro tips on how accounting firms can effectively utilize these data insights to help their clients make more informed decisions aimed at increasing their bottom line?
Grant your clients access to R365! I know it sounds scary, but with our user role specifications within the database, you can provide your clients with real-time data via dashboards in the system without letting them come in there & create a journal entry or handle a bank rec. By doing so, you’re freeing up some of your time by not having to send them reports, and you’re also empowering them to leverage their available data to make decisions.
The restaurant industry often demands agility and adaptability from their outsourced accounting firm. How does Restaurant365 assist accounting firms in keeping up with the ever-evolving demands and challenges in this industry? Are there specific tools or strategies that support them in staying ahead of the curve?
We are very hands-on in the way we support our accounting firms. Our team of Partner Success Managers meet with our channel partners in an agreed upon cadence to discuss new product releases & efficiencies in the software. Again, we don’t want to just throw software at you & hope you digest it. We want to empower you to use it at its highest caliber.
Collaboration is a critical element of success. Could you provide an example of a collaboration between Restaurant365, an accounting firm, and a restaurant client that produced a winning outcome?
Our team of Account Executives works alongside our partners to sell the product directly to their clients, and future clients. I love it when we get on calls with a prospective client of a firm & not only can we demo the R365 product to them, but we can also talk about the partnership between the firm & R365. Not only do we sell our product, but the partner all at the same time. There is no better win than that!
In your experience, what specific qualities or characteristics do you believe make an accounting firm an ideal partner for Restaurant365? What traits do you look for when establishing partnerships within the industry?
Firms that have a segment of their business dedicated to restaurants is a big green flag for us. As we continue to grow this channel, we are looking for groups that share the same passion we do for this industry. Those partners tend to be the most successful in our program as our visions for growth align.
It's always fun to imagine dream scenarios. If you could invite any celebrity chef or restaurant owner to a dinner party, who would it be and why?
My fiancé is the cook in our house & he has recently been heavily influenced by Gregory Gourdet. His Haitian roots alongside his French culinary education make for a pretty amazing cookbook. I’m drawn to Asian cuisines often & he really hits the mark. I don’t think there is a recipe in that book that hasn’t been amazing. I’d love to know more of his back story & how he developed his cooking style.
Bri, as someone with a passion for fashion, I'm curious: If you were heading out on the town for your dream night out, which restaurant would you choose, what dish would you order, and which designer would you be most likely to rock for the occasion?
I love fish, and I love Asian flavors. So, 9/10 times I would probably pick a sushi spot. For a fancy night out, I’m probably doing Omakase. I’ve always been drawn to Alexander McQueen or Tom Ford – two very different designers so I guess it would depend on my mood!