By Jeff Zabin, Managing Editor
Consumer surveys point to the fact that more and more people, particularly millennials, prefer to spend their money on memorable and shareable experiences than on material goods. Needless to say, restaurants are a prime example of opportunities to create memorable and shareable experiences.
The fact that technology can improve and even fundamentally transform the restaurant-going experience is an important consideration for restaurant operators to keep in mind as they look for new and innovative ways to catapult their businesses to ever-higher levels of guest satisfaction as well as operational efficiency.
Of course, these two goals tend to go hand-in-hand. Combined, they translate into decidedly positive financial outcomes. According to Starfleet Research, 84 percent of full-service restaurants, and 72 percent of quick service and fast casual restaurants, report that they achieved “significant” or “dramatic” improvement in revenue performance after deploying next-generation restaurant management and POS systems. Such results obviously make for a very compelling business case.
Some technology upgrades, such as those that protect against data theft, are necessary just to meet regulatory requirements. Restaurant operators must be able to accept new payment methods, including chip credit cards and e-wallet apps. Some upgrades are necessary to improve operational efficiency. Advanced ordering, payment processing, inventory control and labor management features can have a big impact on cost reduction.
Some upgrades, such as guest relationship management capabilities, can make a big difference in guest satisfaction. Robust data analysis and reporting capabilities can also play a role in improving guest satisfaction and loyalty. In the end, all of these upgrades ultimately benefit the guest experience.
And yet some restaurant operators with outdated solutions remain reluctant to embrace new technologies. No doubt, some of them subscribe to the “if it ain’t broke don’t fix it” mantra. Some may simply not realize the full range of benefits a cloud-based, mobile-enabled next-generation system designed specifically for the unique workflows of a restaurant can deliver.