In order for your quick-service restaurant to remain relevant in today’s market, you need to have and use the latest technology. According to Statista, there were around 247,191 fast-food restaurants in the USA in 2018. Still, IBIS World recorded a steep drop to 198,337 in 2020. If you’re a restaurant owner, you may be wondering how this change will impact you.
Shutting down your operation is the worst-case scenario for any restaurant owner. Before it comes to that, consider upgrading your restaurant technology. Doing so can help you manage your restaurant more efficiently. It will assist with everything from handling employee schedules to improving overall customer satisfaction.
What technology should you invest in? Here are some of the best hardware recommendations for quick-service restaurants:
Point of Sale System
There are many new choices when it comes to POS systems. The mobile POS is excellent because it allows people to pay using credit cards, debit cards, or digital wallets from anywhere, as long as they have an internet connection. Restaurants no longer solely depend on traditional cash registers and stationary card readers. Newer POS systems have more advanced features, such as:
- Easier Access– The more modern POS systems offer cloud platforms that allow access to reports from anywhere, even offsite, unlike traditional on-site systems.
- Touchscreen– You don’t need a keyboard or mouse to input data anymore. A touchscreen allows you to access different options and type directly on the screen.
- Variety in Payment Options– Many people prefer the ease of online payments, which is why newer POS systems offer a wide range of payment options. Apart from the usual credit/debit card, there is Paypal and plenty of commonly used wallet payment modes.
- Handheld Options– A handheld POS system makes receiving and giving orders to kitchen staff easier. Instead of waiting at the counter, the employee can head to the kitchen and accept new instructions at the same time.
Customer-Facing Tabletop Tablets and Kiosks
These gadgets are revolutionizing the restaurant industry because of how easy they make ordering and payment processing for both customers and employees. Restaurants employ tabletop tablets that are fixed on a stand or attach a kiosk to a table that allows customers to access menus and create their orders. It works like any other tablet, except that instructions are sent directly to staff, which saves time and reduces waiting time.
It can benefit your restaurant by increasing customer satisfaction. They don’t have to wait for someone to take their order, which lowers the chances of messing up their meal. Apart from this, it can also help employees concentrate on other operations, such as handling resources.
Headsets and Intercom System
Headsets are, without a doubt, vital for every quick-service restaurant. A headset system allows employees to listen to customer’s orders and pass on the request to the chefs and other team members. Intercom systems are equally important, as they inform customers when they can collect their orders. Having the most recent hardware, such as the 3M headset and intercom system for drive-thrus, can prevent mistakes in customers’ requests to the chef and back.
Kitchen Display Screens
Kitchen Display Screens, or KDS, is a massive change-up from printed tickets. With this technology, you can forget about mixing up orders or losing tickets. Constant communication and written tickets can make for a messy scene, and a mistake in orders as information passes around.
The display screens are digital and thus more environmentally friendly. By using POS systems, customer orders are sent directly to the kitchen display system, where employees can view and accept orders.
Bluetooth Temperature Sensors
In the restaurant business, there’s no room for error when it comes to thoroughly cooking raw foods. Bluetooth temperature sensors eliminate the need to manually checking the item with a thermometer. Instead, you can wirelessly record temperature, and it will be sent to your tablet or mobile phone or uploaded to your cloud software. Checking the temperature of food prevents food spoilage and also prevents you from serving spoiled food from customers. Since it’s automatic, you don’t have to worry about human error.
Apart from this, it also checks the equipment’s voltage so that you can replace faulty tools immediately.
Upgrades are Also Necessary For Growth
For your restaurant to survive, and hopefully thrive, you need to keep up with modern technology. If you don’t, other quick-service restaurants who do stay up to date will win over your customers. To meet the needs of your customers and grow a business, consider implementing some (or all) of the tech systems mentioned above.