Restaurant technology is evolving at a rapid pace, as highlighted in PAR’s recent Restaurant Technology Trends Report, making data-backed decisions about which technology to deploy is essential to survival in today’s technology climate. Implementing new technology prior to caring for foundational commitments and without data evidence of its promise, is risky.
Industry veteran Bob Nilsen noted, “Operators and brands who are thriving in this environment are evolving and implementing new strategies like everyone else, but they are laser-focused on tracking, measuring, and reviewing their performance and how their performance affects guest experience and per store profitability.” Below are 4 key areas successful brands focus on meticulously.
The Guest Experience
Consumers today are all about the experience, and great tasting food is only part of that experience. While the guest experience varies drastically depending on the concept, certain core fundamentals transcend concepts.
- Brand Compliance: is the kitchen, dining room, and staff’s appearance clean and well-kept in accordance with brand standards? Do employees maintain cultures and processes to produce the desired guests’ interactions with employees?
- Throughput: Expected service times vary by concept, but in today’s world of convenience, nothing can cause more frustration for a consumer and more lost profit than unnecessary wait times.
When it comes to increasing profitability, there are always external factors beyond an operators control, but there are a few things you can manage without disrupting the guest experience. Here are some key things to watch.
- Employee time theft: studies show that 10-15% of fraud that happens in a restaurant comes from time theft. Ensure you have a system, preferably automated, in place to ensure hours worked matches hours clocked.
- Theft, in its many different forms, accounts for losses between $3-$5 billion dollars in the restaurant industry annually. There are a number of different technologies you can deploy to prevent common culprits like short ringing, register skimming, voids, refunds, and employee discounts. Cutting into this loss adds directly to the bottom line.
With these areas, as well as others, the key is to have a restaurant management software to effectively track, measure and review the impact to the bottom line resulting from new strategies and technologies. It is vital to select technology vendors that play well in your technology ecosystem with simple and friendly integrations, rather than a myriad of siloed databases that cannot share data.
Nilsen added, “New technology platforms, similar to Savi, that allow you the ability to accurately track internal thru-put in dine-in and other related concepts is something that has eluded operators for years, that is now available. Combine that with its ability to cut into your loss, and systems like these are well worth the investment to any operator looking to maximize profitability.”