With unemployment hovering at historic lows and the hospitality industry in particular dealing with labor shortages, restaurants are getting creative in how to fill their needs.
Business Insider recently reported on one restaurant that moved to counter service and disposable utensils in order to stay in business with a smaller staff.
Others are discovering the ways that kiosks can take up some of the load during the current labor shortage. Here are just some of the features that make kiosks an attractive alternative:
Customers can help themselves by using a kiosk to order their meal. This may not fit in all situations (five-star restaurants will likely continue to need a human wait staff) but for many other types of establishments, a kiosk might fit the bill. For instance, a quick-service restaurant can place a kiosk or even a tablet computer on the table where guests can order and even pay for their meals.
This is one reason why kiosks often outrank human servers when it comes to revenue per order. The kiosk can be programmed to offer upsell items when a customer orders and the kiosk will never forget or not offer that upsell. In addition, human psychology can play a part in making the customer less self-conscious when it comes to changing an order to a size ‘large’ in front of a machine as opposed to a person.
It’s probably not a surprise but in almost every restaurant study ever done, customer satisfaction goes down when wait times increase. There are several factors that determine overall customer satisfaction but wait times in particular seem to be important. There’s also evidence that the longer wait time will affect a customer’s repeat-purchase intention at a restaurant.
Therefore, it’s imperative to keep lines as short as possible. For a quick service or maybe even a counter service restaurant, a kiosk might be just the piece of tech needed to help alleviate long lines. Customers can order their meals and then wait for the kitchen to fill the order.
Increased Order Accuracy
One more way that kiosks can help the human staff is that they can help ensure order accuracy. If the customer orders their own meal, there should not be any mistakes in the order. In fact, the order should be exactly what the customer wanted. This leads to a much higher customer satisfaction and a better relationship with the kitchen because they know that the order is coming straight from the customer.
While the kiosk itself might be a somewhat significant investment, it’s likely going to cost a lot less than a human would over the course of a year or so. Plus, the kiosk is not going to need as much time off for vacation and it won’t ever call in sick. It might require some maintenance at some point in the future but at least you can rest easy knowing that it’s not going to make the rest of the staff sick.
Want to see a demo of how kiosks can help in your restaurant or food service business? Contact us today.