The competition is fierce. From Pizzeria chains to pop Ethiopian spots and Michelin Star Establishments, every day you can see new restaurants opening up and shutting down. According to an Ohio State University study, around 80 percent of restaurants fail within five years. The reason is simple, merely serving great food won't cut it. You need to deliver impeccable service with unbeatable efficiency. But with humans, it's not always possible. Restaurants will have to start thinking of investing in technologies that give them an edge.
“Consumers agree that technology has drastically enhanced the overall dining experience.”
With customers already using mobile apps to order from their favorite fast-food restaurants and pay their bills at the table using their smartphones, entrepreneurs in the foodservice industry should keep an eye on innovative technologies that make running a restaurant easier and faster, both in kitchens and front of the house.
Here are the top three technologies that have entered the fray to transform the foodservice industry. These technologies are already making an impact and stand to alter conventional restaurant processes.
Automated Purchasing Tool
What if you enter a restaurant, browse through the menu, and call the waiter to place the order only to be told that the ordered dish can’t be made available at the moment. How disappointing would that be! We all have been in that place. Automating the task is a more efficient solution to this problem. Automated purchasing system helps managers stay on top of stock by sending regular alerts on low product levels. It also suggests intelligent purchasing recommendations, forecasted sales quantities, and custom par levels. What more? The entire purchasing process can be managed through a single application.
AI Enabled Self-Ordering Kiosks
Restaurants are getting next generation ready with self-ordering kiosks, designed to simplify order steps. Customers can browse the menu in a way that they haven’t done before, place orders without fearing any miscommunication, as well as make the payment - all with just a few clicks. It also adds to the revenue by encouraging upsell and cross-sell, prompting customers to order more. In the future, these kiosks will incorporate artificial intelligence that will allow the machine to suggest orders and payments methods according to a customer’s verbal and visual signals. The main takeaway on this technology is that it continues to see an increased demand from both restaurants and QSRs.
Virtual Reality Onboarding
Restaurants are showing a keen interest in using VR for training to eliminate the risks and cost involved in normal training sessions. Virtual Reality gives new employees an immersive experience of their new workplace. They can take a 360-degree tour of the facility, watch other employees working, as well as test their skills through gamification. The exposure to the simulated environment makes new employees sharper when they are in the real-world equivalent. The giant food chain, KFC has recently released "The Hard Way" a VR game meant to simplify the onboarding and training program for new chefs. In this game, the voice of Colonel Sanders guide the cooks through various steps of preparing the world-renowned KFC chicken.
Live Delivery Tracking
Technology that keeps customers updated on meal delivery is getting immensely popular among restaurants these days. Customers want to be able to make the order quickly and want to know how long it will take to deliver. Implementing a live delivery tracking feature to online ordering will drastically improve engagement. Customers can follow the progress of their order in real time - starting from meal preparation to expected arrival time of arrival to their doorstep. Restolabs provides a robust online ordering and tracking system for restaurants.
There’s no doubt that technology improves productivity, delivers ordering efficiency and increases revenue that isn't possible with traditional restaurant processes. You could be missing out on huge opportunities if the technology is not yet on your operation's menu.