The pace of technology evolution is breathtaking, and the quality that the customer expects is extending daily. Leaders from most industries are exploiting the technology opportunities to make their brand, enhance sales models, and connect with customers.
Like many leaders, Paul Windle a restaurant entrepreneur realized that business, as usual, won’t be enough to cut it anymore. With all success, his restaurant business was also facing challenges, which can be addressed with the digital transformation.
Paul wanted to accelerate the pace of the transformation in his business; he plunges into a quest to figure out the ways that would address his restaurant’s needs while outshining to customers.
He embarked on a comprehensive analysis and realized the business is lagging in technology adoption.
Common problems the business contend with:
- Inefficient scheduling: With several orders flooding the restaurant from various channels, it becomes hard to keep up the orders and schedule labor, especially at peak time.
- Absence of cashless payment model – While e-wallets, debit, and other digital payments are witnessing a surge, Paul restaurant was not fully equipped for cashless payment.
- Lack of Mobile responsiveness – When it comes to customer acceptance, they misjudged how customers interface with technology. They forget to realize the customers are already fetching technology to their table.
- Fails to respond to complaints – The most overlooked component of almost all retailers. There was no proper component to respond fast to the customer request.
- Improper Inventory Management – Paul came to know that his business was having difficulty in managing inventories with the constantly changing data across his 60 locations. Each location has over 100 menu items that change so often. With a traditional excel based system it was inefficient and time-consuming.
- Disparate system – Another issue rests within the disjoint systems. Particularly, a desperate POS system results in poor visibility and failure to track the operations of 3rd party services.
- On-premise restaurant management software – To operate his restaurant management software, he was maintaining an on-premise server on each restaurant location. This meant he had a rack of systems, wire-up in the restaurant to capture data, track performance, and process transactions.
Not only Paul’s restaurant, all tech hesitant regardless of industries can relate these concerns with few differences from one to the next.
What’s next? Paul’s mind turns to technology to confront light in the dark. Let us have a good look at how Paul can remediate the issues with the digital transformation.
Ways to addressing challenges with Technologies
1. Optimized scheduling software
Whether you’re in healthcare, retail, hospitality, or construction industry, the staff scheduling problem is the universal thing that causes headaches for managers.
Fortunately, technology evolution has covered our restaurateur with scheduling software. Within a second, the staff can generate as well as distribute their weekly schedule to all workforces. There is no possibility for under- or over-staffing, as the shift times are optimized based on the historical staffing patterns.
2. Mobile & Online Payment
Turing down customers due to lack of cashless payment option is a negative thing and harm every business. Businesses should offer customers the flexibility to opt for their convenient online payment method.
Paul was happy to finally have online payment available and put more focus on making a pleasant ordering experience – the one that makes customers order again & again.
So he can spend less time on payment processing and more time with their customers to enhance revenue.
3. Mobile apps can be a Game-Changer
As more and more people are using their smartphones to order, explore, pay, carry out and share their experience, there are no signs of slowing down in mobile app trends.
Paul has already invested time and resources on the mobile-friendly website, so his customers are covered with the features they want. Still, he is not satisfied, he always wanted to go out of the box, and Mobile apps are the bleeding edge.
He developed and strengthened his mobile experience with brand relevant and customer-inspired apps.
4. Focus on Chatbot Enhancements
Not just at the restaurant, customers should be satisfied in each interaction they’ve with your business. A chatbot can help with this.
With bots, Paul is making sure his patrons and prospect have the key details they need about the restaurant at their fingertips. Also, he used a bot to personalize every interaction to build credibility, trust as well as position relationships.
5. Accessible API Integration
No matter your business size or industry, it is time to explore what the API can express for your company. API represents the solution for the enterprises that want to integrate disparate systems as it provides the glue to make this new strategy possible.
People today use online apps to order food. Integration with these third-party aggregators is necessary to bring harmony. Further POS integration supports managing costs and transforms the profit margins of Paul’s omnichannel restaurant into high-quality revenue streams.
6. Digital Inventory Tracking
With a digital menu, the tasks, which were once painful with paper menus, become a quick and simple adjustment for Paul and his staff. Plus, he switched over to the digital inventory tracking to get better visibility of the main assets.
Practically, all business sectors have some sort of inventory, and platform that allows them to monitor orders, stock, sales, and deliveries. Overall, Paul has the privilege to organize his data in an efficient way, which was maintained in spreadsheets earlier.
7. Cost Saving with Cloud Computing
As the restaurant management software remains on-premise, it was difficult to access the data when he needs & where he needs it. Paul has explored potential solutions to get long-term storage as well as centralized access to details across 60 locations. The readily available solution, cloud storage becomes his attractive option to curate the data.
His cloud-based restaurant management solution relies on the remote off-premise, which are hosted on the internet to process and manage data. The cloud offers the best way to keep the business organized, cost effective & innovative, and businesses have reported strong results.
Implementation of Tech Solutions Lead to Immense Success
When Paul made a digital transformation in his restaurants, the outcomes were exciting right from the beginning and positively impacted the business, its employees, and its customers. Any challenges over the customer aversion to the smartphone were dispelled once the website becomes mobile-friendly.
They could inform the customer about the wait time and allow them to order from their table & pay bills from their phone. This can entice customers to come in. Staffs almost immediately become captivated in all the inventory information.
Unlike Paul, many entrepreneurs are not accepting that they are lagging as they’re succumbing to fears of technology adoption. Think values, not challenges. Paul has witnessed how you can be favorable making the leap from rags to riches in tech.
A forecast of Future
Whether it’s a menu update in real-time or the progress of the sale that introduces a new way to market service, the digitalization has helped his restaurant evolve as well as continue his excellence.
After seeing the success of the multiple technologies in restaurant management, Paul has increased this strategy to match customer enthusiasm and he expanded his restaurant business to other locations worldwide.
In the current scenario, businesses have a long way to go to implement innovative technologies. Of course, there will probably be trial & error, which goes with it. However, in the end, memorable customer experience and pleasant relationships need to be the goal. Though this may need an initial investment in expertise, software, and hardware, the cost will be worth it.