The demand for food has been always on the rise due to the increasing population across the world. Even when the world got hit by the pandemic COVID-19, the F&B industry paved its way to reach its customers in an efficient way. Of course, when many countries imposed lockdown, the restaurants, food joints, and other similar outlets also were completely shut down due to which they had to face immense losses. But as soon as the world started returning back on track with the new normal rules, the F&B Industry also adapted to the new changes with the help of the latest technologies and strategies.
Increased Food Delivery:
The demand for home deliveries has already seen a rise over the last few years. But when things started getting back to normal after the removal of lockdown, a tremendous increase is noticed for home delivery orders. Though due to rapid vaccination drive and other strategies, there has been noticed a good control over the virus, people are still not sure whether they should go out of their houses or not. Thus, a visible drop has been noticed in the number of people who would visit restaurants to dine in. These guests rather feel more comfortable now ordering food and getting it delivered at home to consume it within the comfort of their homes.
While the increased amount of food delivery has brought back the pace of the F&B Industry on track, but it has definitely thinned the profit margin for many restaurants and food joints. Most restaurants charge service charges when customers visit the restaurant to dine in. This service charge amount has to be waved off when they order for food delivery. Of course, this leads to thinning of the profit margin of the restaurant. In fact, when the customers order food over the phone, a dedicated team has to be there to take the orders and then pass them to the kitchen.
Experts have mentioned several ways to tackle such a problem such as by increasing the rates of the food or by adding up delivery charges for food delivery. But as these solutions will increase the bill amount, many customers may refrain to order from such restaurants. Hence, another great idea is to make use of technology. The use of ERP is a great initiative to create an experience that is convenient for the customers as well as the restaurant owners and staff. All that the customers have to do is to either download the application or have to visit the website of the restaurant to order the food items online and also pay the bill online. The restaurants also offer discounts from time to time through such applications and websites to allure them and welcome more food orders online.
One of the most essential points that we cannot ignore during this pandemic time is that of enhanced hygiene. Apart from the rules of social distancing and wearing a mask, another most essential point is to take extreme care about hygiene. Food can get contaminated quite easily and so it is essential to maintain extra cleanliness while handling food. F&B Industry has introduced several regulations now to maintain the hygiene factor so that food can be served and delivered without any risk of contamination. Some of the regulations that the hotels, restaurants, and other places maintain in this new normal are:
Sanitizing the kitchen and dining area at regular intervals,
Handling food by wearing gloves, masks, and hair caps,
Maintaining social distancing at work as well as from the customers.
Customers have also stood up quite responsibly now and they prefer to order food from restaurants and hotels that commit to maintaining all these regulations. Also, there are many restaurants and even food delivery partners that ask for feedback from the customers regarding the regulations that the food joints have maintained in terms of food packaging, or even while delivering the food items. The customers are now provided the authority to complain when they find any of the above-mentioned regulations getting violated.
As social distancing became the prime solution to cut down the spread of the virus, digitalization became quite popular now. Customers now prefer to make payments through different digital forms so that they do not have to get in contact with the other person in terms of exchanging currencies. There are two major ways that have allowed the spread of digitalization in between the relationship of a customer and the F&B industry.
When customers order online, they prefer to pay online at the application or at the website directly before the food is delivered.
When the customer is at the restaurant for dine-in, they usually pay online through different money transfer applications available now in place of paying in cash.
Not just for the payment mode, digitalization is paving its way in many other areas of the F&B Industry too. Making use of these digitalized methods, not just the risk of direct contact is reduced but also convenience has been enhanced. One of the eminent examples that can be talked about is the restaurant management software through which the steward does not have to enter the kitchen with a paper to notify the chef about the order of the customers. The steward can just update the order on software and the chef can get a notification about what has to be prepared for a particular customer.
Is This Change Good for the Long Run?
While many of the restaurants and small food joints may find the introduction of these changes a bit messy and expensive at the initial stage, but definitely this is going to pay off in the long run. Here are some of the eminent ways how the use of technology is a help in the long run.
The use of technology such as restaurant management systems makes your operations much smoother and accelerates the quality and speed of work.
The ERP system does not offer a faster and safer mode of payment but also helps in keeping track of your monetary elements such as comparing sales of different months to check your growth
There are also restaurant management systems that include inventory management that also helps you in handling your inventory well so that you can control food wastage or even shortage on time.
Systems welcoming customer feedback helps you in understanding what you need to change so that you can get ready to serve the customers in an even better way.
Thus, definitely, the F&B Industry had to face a number of challenges initially to adapt to the new normal similar to many other industries around. But the good thing is that in this whole scenario, the industry has learned to make use of technology and other strategies in an efficient way to march towards a future that is even brighter than before.
With daily circumstances occurring around the globe, especially during the current unprecedented times of Covid-19, business industries such as the Food and Beverage (F&B) are not spared from this as well.
Here are 5 Restaurant Technological Trends to prep you, if you are considering starting an F&B business venture, especially now more so than ever when both restaurants and business owners alike have taken a bad toll during this period and technology have been observed to provide F&B businesses with add-on means to stay afloat or to change its course of business model approach to have a leg up against the competition.
#1: Reduce Food Waste Technology
Many restaurant owners have been looking to explore more into reducing food wastage in recent years as the Food and Beverage (F&B) industry is one of the few sectors that is currently contributing to the staggering amount of food wastage globally.
Recent technology enables Restaurant Owners and Management Staffs to have better insights and data into analyzing and anticipating guest demands for certain products and menu items
i.e. High in demand, popular and sold out items, and also least favorite or popular items, thus help restaurants to track their inventory and reduce food wastage in entirety, such as decreasing amounts of ingredients purchased for least popular products or menu items and cutting costs in certain aspects relating to food preparation processes and more.
Hence it comes with the added benefit of helping restaurants reduce their operating costs overall where food waste is estimated to cost the hospitality industry $100 billion each year—without sacrificing anything in terms of the guest experience, where they could better plan and strategize to roll out more on high demand products and menu items based on preferred days and dining services’ time periods according to figures, while also reworking and/or promoting more on least favorite or popular products and menu items before including them onto their menu once again.
Additionally, many of today’s consumers are also consciously choosing to support businesses that strive to contribute to a positive environmental impact hence this would also enable businesses to position themselves with a better brand image and recognition with prospective customers as one of their target audiences too.
#2: Technology that Improves Guests’ Experiences
This is a trend that’s commonly seen across all retail industries in recent years: Guests want an experience that’s tailored and personalized to them, their tastes, and their interests. That’s historically been a challenge in the restaurant industry, but new technology trends are slowly getting introduced and implemented for restaurants in this current digital age.
First, there are waiter ordering apps or platforms which could straightaway send (‘fire’) guests’ menu orders directly to the backend kitchen for preparation and this enables guests and restaurant staff to save time and cut costs while providing efficiency and productivity as stationery materials are no longer needed and could be replaced to become digitalized thus also minimizing human errors.
Then there’s the technology that allows you to collect and utilize data about your guests through membership feature; where restaurant owners are able to entice guests to become regulars or frequent patrons by offering them customized experiences that cater to their known preferences and also with the benefit usage of vouchers, coupons and more.
#3: Technology that Allows Customers to Follow their Online Orders
Since 2020, many guests have replaced visits to restaurants with delivery orders instead—often placed via third-party delivery apps like FoodPanda, Zomato, Swiggy, Dunzo, and more, like dining in becomes challenging for restaurants and the majority have to turn to digital means such as online delivery to stay afloat.
A handy feature that online ordering and delivery apps could offer guests is the ability to follow along with every step of the food order process as their order is prepared, picked up by a delivery driver, and dropped off at their doorstep. Guests who have grown accustomed to being able to follow along and get real-time updates about their food orders would most likely not prefer to go back to how things were before.
This means that a growing trend in restaurant technology is the ability to take direct online orders and provide updates to guests while those orders are in the midst of completion and/or when it gets fulfilled with notifications letting guests know that their orders have been prepared and/or safely delivered once food orders have arrived at the chosen location.
#4: Technology for Splitting the Bill and Paying at the Table
Splitting the bill has long been a little bit of a pain point for restaurant guests. But with the most compatible and ideal technology, it becomes a far simpler process—no calculator required.
Technology that’s really gaining in popularity allows guests to use either their own smartphones or a tablet at the table to view their bill in real-time, place multiple orders under the same dining setting, and have the options of either ‘Pay-First’ (paying first before dining) or ‘Pay-Later’ (paying later after dining) payment concepts at their table, so when it’s time to pay, the bill would be already sorted through without much hassle.
Additionally, when guests dine in at any restaurant, they would much prefer to be given the option of having the flexibility to add on menu orders and spill their bills in any preferred manner (i.e. Paying Dutch, Splitting by ‘n’ number of guests, etc.) due to circumstances when guests have companions who join them after or leaves before their meals are completely finished.
This savestime and enhances a positive impression for guests and restaurant staff, and can result in higher guest spending, better table turn time, and more revenue for your restaurant as a whole.
#5: Technology for Different Contactless Experiences
The pandemic has made “contactless delivery” into a phrase everyone knows and understands. But even prior to Covid-19, contactless restaurant experiences were on the rise increasingly, and not just simply for takeout and delivery orders.
Increasingly, many guests want and prefer Contactless Dine-In. There are a number of different technologies that support this trend— such as Self-Order Kiosks, Pay-at-the-Table technology, Direct Online Ordering, and more. In fact, contactless payments at businesses around the world are expected to triple—from $2 trillion to $6 trillion—by 2024.
But one thing your restaurant will likely need no matter what kind of contactless dine-in experience it offers is a way to create and utilize QR Codes.
A guest’s dining experience starts from the moment they made their choice to queue at restaurants, view menus, make orders and payments, join in an online waiting list, and more, technology such as QR Codes has virtually unlimited applications in modern restaurants.
Why different contactless experiences are rising in popularity would eventually boil down to consumers’ behavior where many would prefer to make their orders while dining in comfortably at their own pace without feeling the pressure of restaurant staffs waiting for them, while having flexibility with various digitalized payment modes (i.e. ibanking, credit points deduction, etc.) based on their preference and more.
Consider LevelFive Solutions today!
At LevelFive Solutions, we can fulfill these restaurant technological trends we have listed above for your restaurant business based on your customized requests with our comprehensive DinePlan Solution Suite to address each core aspect of your restaurant flow and manage your restaurant operational systems overall. To find out more, send us your inquiry at email@example.com, Schedule a Demo with us or drop us a message on our social media handles at LevelFive Solutions today!
What are some of the factors that affect a restaurant management’s longevity?
Business owners would have to consider a few of these in order to maintain or to gradually improve the overall productivity and efficacy of managing and sustaining a restaurant business.
Where we are able to retain our customers’ satisfaction, regular support, and patronage within the Food and Beverage (F&B) industry over time.
Whether if it is from a regional or global perspective, the F&B market is a fast-pacing and ever-growing industry that expands exponentially along with the growth and progress in urban populations and technological developments worldwide.
The F&B industry is a broad sector, to begin with, as it consists of the various types of dining services that many restaurant businesses could provide now based on current needs, wants, and trends of the consumers.
Also, this ranges from their eating habits to the wide range of considerations that many restaurant businesses would need to take note of while managing their restaurant’s daily operations.
Fret not, here are the Top 5 Factors that we have compiled to enable you and your team to better identify and consider these factors which could affect your restaurant’s management longevity prior to the commencement of your own F&B business or even as a veteran within the F&B sector!
Foods prepared on-site would usually require more time and labour costs than similar menu items that are made with convenience foods, such as pre-portioned meats or desserts.
We could reduce labour costs by using convenience foods, but business owners would have to consider two factors such as:
i) Which types of convenience foods would increase your overall ingredients and preparation costs, and ii) Which may also affect the quality of your menu items.
The second factor – affecting the quality of the menu items – will not always be that evident.
If convenience foods are made with high-quality ingredients at affordable and reasonable pricing, where they are processed or prepared exactly or similarly as recommended by manufacturers, this could help to provide uniform portions of very good quality food items overall.
Did you know the number and complexity of menu items affect the production hours needed overall for your restaurant business?
If you have a menu with many items requiring difficult production techniques, you will require more preparation time per item as a whole.
And if your menu consists of a limited number of items requiring minimal preparation, you will thus require less time.
This is significantly observed when restaurants are catering a wide range of food cuisines under their operations.
Hence it is advisable for new and current business owners to be mindful of the specialty and the specializations they could provide to customers to better serve and stand out from other businesses.
Focusing and specializing in either one or two cuisines would ensure and enable that a company is able to better manage their overall business operations flow.
Without extending and overloading their staff too thinly on various things occurring within its kitchen management simultaneously.
Did you know within the F&B establishment scene, there are various types of dining services catered that business owners could consider if they are planning to start up their own?
This includes restaurants, cafeterias, cafés, fast-food joints, pubs, delis, food manufacturing operations, catering businesses, food transportation services, and more.
Based on the types of service your business is offering, the work for them can range even from packaging to preparing, transporting, and serving food or beverages to others.
Hence the types of dining services a business owner is considering to provide are one of the crucial factors to consider prior to starting their own F&B establishment.
i.e. A full dining service restaurant featuring complex dishes with multiple components will require more labor and preparation time than a cafeteria-style or fast-food type of quick dining service restaurant.
Also, a restaurant that requires a higher level of skills in terms of preparing more complex and extravagant-looking dishes will require more experienced kitchen staff.
This in turn would require a higher range of internal or external manpower and resources costs.
Next, the volume of business will affect the amount of manpower required as well.
Depending on each restaurant’s overall operational management system, they will have a minimum staffing level without which they cannot operate on.
If it serves fewer people than this minimum staffing level it is able to handle on, the labour costs will then be significantly higher.
Also, the number of meal periods would then affect the productivity of the restaurant if different menus for each period would require set-up and tear-down time.
And different menus catering for different meal periods will usually mean a larger number of menu items being included, so this greatly affects a restaurant’s manpower and other areas of resources.
#5: Use of Technologies for Overall Restaurant Management
Lastly, the use of various types of technological systems relating to the restaurant’s overall operational management could also play a crucial role and have a significant impact on its overall productivity and effectiveness.
Establishments that are using outdated or non-upgraded software solutions or systems for their operations would have observed and realized the lag time or technical issues it brought on when their solutions or systems are loading or processing data and information slowly.
Repercussions could be much more detrimental than what many business owners might have thought of.
i.e. The POS (Point-of-Sales) solution system used by business owners for its overall operational management could be the first crucial factor for businesses to consider as it is the first point of contact in providing a seamless service flow for customers.
From the moment they’re assisted to be seated followed by them taking or making food orders, to kitchen preparation for receiving each diner’s menu orders, actual food preparation, add-on food orders, and lastly, making payments.
At LevelFive Solutions, our DinePlan Suite is an overall comprehensive F&B Management Solution that helps business owners to better manage their Online, Onsite, B2B, and B2C businesses efficiently, effectively, and more.
We’ve a wide range of solutions each addressing core business functions that every modern, high-growing, both standalone and chain restaurant needs today.
They seamlessly work together to bring you splendid results, which covers from start till end of your whole service operational management flow.
Learn more about our DinePlan Suite and how its features could help you with your business and operational management overall, you could drop us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or Schedule a Demo with us today!
With the increase in competition and the introduction of restaurant technology, there’s a noticeable change in customer demands. Hence, the restaurateurs are going all out to automate the restaurant operations. This can be achieved only through implementing a smart restaurant technology that can optimize operations, and speeds processes. Implementing technology in your restaurant is a very cost-effective solution in the long run. Moreover, it provides various services that increase your customer satisfaction and is also customizable. Automating restaurant operations with the help of smart technology is not only imperative but the need of an hour. Also, it marginally reduces the scope of errors and mistakes as compared to manual operations manifold.
How To Improve Restaurant Operations Using Restaurant Technology
As above we have talked about the importance of both restaurant technology and automation for your restaurant. Let us now learn the smart ways in which it can streamline your restaurant operations.
Talking about restaurants and current needs, Online Ordering is a new trend. With more and more online food aggregators, online ordering is becoming famous which can be done through a mobile app. This enables your guests to place an order from anywhere. One of the major advantages of online ordering is that it is easy for guests to place an order with just a few clicks away from their favorite restaurant. This significantly reduces the risks of mixing up the order through telephonic ordering.
Earlier the Restaurant technology was introduced in a form of enhancing billing operations in restaurants. However, nowadays it provides much more than just billing. In billing, the POS software generates an automatic bill right after the order is placed or the customer has dined. This bill is based on the Kitchen Order Ticket (KOT), which eliminates the scope of mixing up orders and bills. This eliminates all sorts of delays and enhances customer service. Also, Dineplan Suite provides splitting bill options which makes it easier for customers to pay when they want to go Dutch.
With the introduction of Online payments, the lives of both customers and restaurateurs are much easier.
Nowadays, all the bills generation, as well as the payment, can be done via mobile phones, e-wallets,Google Pay and so much more. This service speeds up the bill settlement process significantly by automating restaurant operations and increasing customer delight.
With all the technology and competition in the restaurant industry, customers do not like to wait in the restaurant. Here comes the need for Online table reservations which enables customers to book tables in advance. This tool in your pos software presents a virtual overview of the restaurant to help customers choose their preferable tables and book in advance. Isn’t that a wonderful feature to offer? This service increases your customer delight, as the customers can avoid waiting to be get seated.
Of course, acquiring a new customer is significantly important for all businesses including the restaurant industry. However, the cost of acquiring is more than retaining your current customer base. In general, your Loyal customers tend to spend more and are more helpful to refer their friends. Hence, Loyalty programs are very crucial for your restaurant business. With the help of your pos system, you can run a loyalty program campaign on your customer database. This means on each order, the points are automatically added to your customer’s profile.
Accounting and Reporting
Accounting feature in your restaurant pos software – Dineplan Suite enables you to manage your daily and monthly finances of the restaurant. You can access all the sales data and transactions in various formats to easily understand your restaurant business. Also, restaurateurs can view all the activities in a restaurant in real-time.
Your pos software provides an Inventory Management feature which is very useful for managing the raw materials for your restaurant. It easily manages all the stock, raw materials, supplies for daily operations, etc. In addition, you can also manage the shelf life of bakery products like bread, cakes, ice-creams, etc. Based on the orders and trends, your pos system will keep you updated about your current stock. Moreover, it predicts how long your current stock will last, and send indents to order on time to avoid running out of stock. All this detailed management of the stock helps you reduce wastage.
Other than cash, inventory is the next area that is prone to internal theft and pilferage. Hence, you can assign roles and permissions to your staff through specific access to the inventory. In the restaurant industry, Inventory management is one of the most sought-after automation. Learn more about Inventory Management here.
Reporting and analytics are the most important areas for any business. Hence, the restaurant business too requires regular running and managing a restaurant. Your restaurant management software stores all your sales data and transactions on a moment-to-moment basis. This data is available on a real-time basis as well as the selected period for regularly analyzing them. These reports must be analyzed regularly to predict trends and formulate future strategies.
In addition, this analysis can help restaurants to offer customized deals and offers which can attract more customers. The analytic feature generates reports based on the customers’ ordering habits, and restaurateurs use this data to offer deals and discounts. Learn more about Restaurant Analytics here.
Customer Relationship Management
Customer Relation Management (CRM) is an important tool to manage all your customer databases. CRM helps you to boost customer engagement through personalized email and SMS campaigns. All you need to do is simply install Cloud POS software which offers CRM features wherein all your customer data is automatically stored. This customer data usually records the name, number, location, order history, and value. Based on all these details, you can run a customized campaign of offers and discounts based on their order history.
Not only this, you can even send personalized emails, newsletters, new menu additions, events, and a lot more.
For ages, restaurant staff has been chasing the guests for providing customer feedback for the services and food at the restaurant. Earlier it was all done manually on a register or by filling up a form. However, with the introduction of new smart pos software, the manual task of filling the feedback form is eliminated. Nowadays, your pos software will have a Customer Feedback Management feature that simplifies the feedback-taking process with a few clicks. Customers can now provide feedback based on the food they ordered and their overall experience. Learn ways of Marketing your Restaurant here.
So, now tell us about the restaurant technology which you are using at your restaurant.