Powerplant Superfood Café: Joyful Food, Painful Tax Penalties

Powerplant Superfood Café: Joyful Food, Painful Tax Penalties

A restaurant owner spends less time on payroll and no longer worries about tax penalties.

When Cynthia Moore opened the Powerplant Superfood Café in 2014, she and her two business partners had a vision: to provide plant-based, gluten-free dishes more flavorful and Instagram-worthy than any restaurant in Los Angeles, and to "love each person who crossed our threshold through our food."

Today, the loyalty of her customers is proof of her success. "Some people come three times in 24 hours," Moore says. "It's so joyful."

Less joyful was the bookkeeping. In an effort to keep overhead low, one of Moore's partners was designated to handle payroll and accounting. But her lack of experience showed. IRS paperwork wasn't filed on time, which resulted in costly penalties. Once, she failed to comply with an increase in California's minimum wage because she simply hadn't heard about it.

"We're focused on the customers and making sure the food is fresh," Moore says. "If you don't have a professional handling bookkeeping, how are you going to know these things? Nobody writes in the sky: 'Hey, minimum wage is going up on this date.'"

But good help was hard to find. She interviewed CPAs, a "high-end bookkeeper," a payroll company in San Diego and a business consultant, but none felt like a good fit. "I have to like the people I work with," she says. "I can't have any more stress."

ADP and Small Businesses: "A Great Fit"

Moore had assumed that ADP was only for large businesses until an ADP representative told her about their suite of small-business services like RUN Powered by ADP® for payroll, Employee Handbook Wizard and HR Helpdesk. "I thought it was a great fit," Moore says.

Now, Moore is spending a fraction of the time on payroll that she once did, and there are no more fines to worry about. She notes how "ADP saves me money because I don't have the tax penalties we were running up."

It has made her a better boss too, she adds. With Employee Handbook Wizard, she is finally able to put Powerplant's code of conduct into writing, and ADP's HR Tips taught her how to properly implement employee breaks. "That's the kind of thing you just don't know when you start a business," she says.

With ADP working for her, Moore is losing less money and getting more sleep. "I have confidence," she says, "which really does translate to less stress." And a lot more joy.

Company Vitals

  • Name: Powerplant Superfood Café
  • Industry: Restaurant
  • Established: 2014
  • Owner: Cynthia Moore
  • Employees: 10
  • Locations: One
  • Headquarters: Los Angeles
  • Website: Powerplant Superfood Cafe
  • Business Challenge: Costly Tax Penalties and Employee Management
  • How ADP Helped: RUN Powered by ADP® debits taxes with every payroll and Employee Handbook Wizard makes it easy to put guidelines in writing

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