How Technology Has Transformed The Hospitality Industry…25th April 2018, by Samantha WellerWe’re currently living at the peak of the digital era, where speed and accessibility has become a key priority for consumers. Businesses everywhere are required to stay in line with these evolving changes with technology, to ensure they continue to grow successfully.
One industry which has really transformed due to the advancements in technology, is the hospitality industry.Whether you’re part of a hospitality led team or a visiting customer, we’ve all subliminally watched and been part of the change. We’ve seen venues move away from traditional methods such as pen and paper, to tech solutions such as handheld ordering. Punch key till points, to comprehensive and configurable touch screen software. Kitchen printers to kitchen management systems. Queues and overstaffed QSR venues, to self-service kiosks and in-app ordering. All of which, are solutions which are becoming (or have already become) mainstream.
As providers of innovative Epos technology, here are a few core benefits which we’ve seen first-hand can benefit operators and the teams within everywhere.Data – Technology Today Helps Operators Make Better Business Decisions.
In the past, Epos was exactly what it stands for – electronic point of sale. It was primarily a solution in place to simply input orders and cash off payments. Other than that, management and owners relied on manual and time-consuming processes to really understand how the business was performing. In result, affecting spends negatively across multiple areas such as labour and stock.
However, there is now a limitless amount of data available to operators in a matter of minutes – data which they could never have accessed before. This is due to advancements in cloud-based technology such as Business Reporting modules. A seamless integration between Reporting and the On-Premise solutions like the point of sale, means management and head office can now access hundreds of reports across all areas of their business at any time, from any internet connected device.
So, how does this benefit business? This technology gives operators access to information much faster, allowing further decisions to made quickly. This can have a positive impact on the business daily, rather than monthly, which is critical when turning a profit. For example how many of your newly released cocktails have been sold in the last month? Or what are your exact labour cost percentages against sales?
From there, operators can make key business decisions to ensure they’re saving costs where necessary and improving their profit margins. So, for teams who wish to utilise technology in the business, this is one solution we’d advise to make mandatory.Customer Satisfaction – Providing A Better Experience For Guests.
The hospitality industry is all about guest experience. Two core elements which affect that experience, is the speed of service and the way customers are able to interact with their order directly through technology.
This is where the growth of innovative tech has had an extremely positive impact. Advancements on the point of sale itself, has become far more intelligent, with specifically developed features and functionalities which are primarily in place to assist with speed of service.
For the same reason, more and more operators are starting to reap the benefits from efficient handheld ordering, kitchen management systems and much more. All of which, enables teams to operate quicker and therefore, makes the journey of ordering through to receiving the meal and paying, also faster for the customer.
Many visitors also enjoy the use of self service solutions when they visit a fast food restaurant, pub or restaurant. This is due to the way they can have full control of their order, from beginning to end. Although, that’s not the only purpose it provides. If a QSR location lets customers use technology, they will come back 6% more often and spend 20% more each time, meaning operators can expect to see a rise in sales too!
That, combined with reduced labour costs, can help yield a much improved bottom line profit. Therefore, solutions like the above have become the perfect answer for operators who want to see their customer satisfaction levels rise alongside their profits.Time – Improving Efficiency
We know that operators don’t have a great amount of time on their hands, managing late shifts and extremely early mornings. We’ve been there ourselves! However, technology has been a main component in helping make those long shifts much easier.
Now, solutions on the market are being developed to reduce the time spent on many tasks around the business. In result, freeing up time to focus on other areas. Even if that means being able to have a 5-minute coffee break.
Our cloud based Centralised Management module, is one of many examples of a great time saving solution. Within the module, management and head office can make changes to their entire estate, all from one location.
Does your seasonal menu need to go live across all sites around the UK for a specific date? No problem. Through the ‘packages’ feature, operators can create a menu or make specific changes, select which sites need those changes alongside choosing a ‘go live’ date. From there, the updates will go live at the selected time.
This not only improves accuracy and consistency across all menus at each site, but it also reduces administration time spent on manual processes. In this situation, a process which would otherwise consist of multiple calls and emails to ensure all management teams made the correct changes in time.
Last but not least, Cash Management is the newest addition to our Enterprise Suite and definitely a solution which has been developed with efficiency as the primary focus. Now, management can expect to save more time at the end of their shift when cashing up.
This is due to the synchronisation between the point of sale and the module, which allows users to process banking’s in a completely streamlined way. Furthermore, the module allows for potential tender variances to be traced to a particular asset for simplified analysis and rectification which means errors are easier to find. Time saver!Where does that leave technology in the future of hospitality? Every hospitality led business is different and that certainly includes the technology requirements. For some venues, stripped back technology and a traditional approach to service, will be the most effective for them and their target audience.
However, on the other end of the spectrum, other hospitality venue owners are excited by the technological opportunities that providers can bring to their business. Alongside this, the next generation customer is savvy, connected and has growing expectations in relation to technology.
So with that, we are expecting more providers to explore their opportunities with emerging solutions. In the not so far future, this could include advancements in facial recognition technology, further developments with tracking the food prepping process, innovative ordering ahead with recommended digital menus and much more.
As a result, technology has now made restaurants smarter and faster. Combined with growing dependence on these solutions, we’re positive that there’s more innovative tech for the hospitality industry just around the corner.