Relaxation of COVID Restrictions across the globe is providing an opportunity for hospitality industry to get back to normal. However, to make the most of this opportunity, they need adapt to new QSR technology trends. From automation to artificial intelligence, every breakthrough in technology is supporting QSR digital transformation. So without further ado let’s look into some of the groundbreaking trends of Technology in Restaurants.
Usage of Automation Technology in Restaurants for Exceptional Experience
With the digital transformation reshaping the QSR industry, it’s reasonable to assume that implementation of self-service technologies leading to less human intervention will be every brand’s priority. Technologies like Self-Service Kiosks, Automated Drive-Thrus, Self-Checkouts, Food Vending Machines with customizations are already making their way in the Quick Service Chains. As more brands invest in research and start testing solutions, they will uncover great value in these solutions. In 2022, we will see that Automation will be at the forefront of the QSRs business model, offering great convenience to consumers and a great food experience.
AI-ML Driven Food Menus
Customers are becoming more and more conscious about the ingredients they consume. Consumers expect transparency about the ingredients used in the food, labelling, nutritional value, and calories.
By leveraging technologies like scan and learn, freshness detectors, mobile ordering apps, and websites, QSRs can provide details about the food ingredients, their nutritional value and help customers in making informed and healthier food choices. It also helps in generating massive amounts of data about food preferences, customer's history, and fast-moving food items. Using advanced algorithms, QSRs can leverage AI-ML technologies to customize their food menus leading to more sales and fewer wastages. This opens a host of new opportunities to customize user's food experiences and gain more insights into how food preferences are shifting.
For example, Track My Macca – An Australian McDonald’s app can scan an order & give ingredient detail, with farmer’s story & things that went behind the scenes to make the order happen.
Adaption of Robotic Technology in Restaurants
Many restaurants are using robots for food preparation, customer serving, & check-outs. Numerous reports indicate Robot Technology as one of the trendiest technologies for restaurants to reduce their manpower costs, achieve perfection in their native recipes, and provide a superior customer experience. Some real-time use cases of robotic technology in restaurants are:
- Robot Bartender – A perfect combination of AI and Speech Recognition in a robot can be used to speed up cocktails mix & serve customers.
- Preparing Pizzas with relevant ingredients & toppings can be done by feeding information to an automatic pizza-making machine.
- Contactless coffee machines using magnetic theory & AI/ML to move a coffee cup from the coffee machine to a user.
Leading companies like NVIDIA, Microsoft, iRobot are known for their Robot Technology capabilities. These companies aid Robot applications using SDK, interactive graphics, and more. In 2022, we will see Robotic Technology providers fine-tuning their current offerings to augment the current human workforce and speed up the process of food preparation, taking orders, and serving customers.
Smart Inventory and Staff Management
Inventory and staff are two crucial aspects of any QSR. Optimizing staff and inventory can directly translate into huge savings. With the rise of multichannel ordering, payments, increased menu items, and integrated supply chains, QSRs need Smart Inventory and Staff Management systems to keep these data readily available for data-driven decision-making.
Combining the current data with AI-ML can help in deriving insights about inventories, customer's demands, staff attendance, optimizing staff for store and location. It also helps in preventing the inventory understock & overstock problems. Smart inventory management can help in predicting the demand and supply for various ingredients, compare prices and delivery time from suppliers providing a better bargain to the store manager. This eliminates the bias that comes with Human intervention.
QSRs struggle with managing the human workforce, last minute schedule changes leading to workforce inefficiency. Smart Staff Management systems can understand the customer trends, online and in-store orders, and the number of staff required to provide appropriate customer service. This technology in restaurants not only optimizes staff but also helps in improving workforce productivity by proper leave & work-break notifications.
Frictionless ordering and dining experiences
The worst thing that restaurants can do is take a hard stance with their customer experience efforts. The Digital landscape is constantly evolving. If restaurants settle into a comfort zone, they could elevate the risk of providing bad customer experiences and losing them to competitors.
In 2022, QSRs need to work and build a omnichannel seamless experience, one that ensures that customers can interact seamlessly with their brand across multiple channels by implementing location intelligence through beacon technology, biometric payments, voice assistants, loyalty programs, and personalized offers. When they are powered with Edge Computing, AI, IoT, Robotics, Big Data, they will get a view of real-time customer data to further improve their customer experience increasing customer lifetime value and loyalty. Further, data from the current customer's landscape can help in understanding shift in trends to customize their experiences and food preferences for upcoming food influencers like Gen Alpha.
Cloud-Based POS technology in restaurants for speed and security
Cloud Technologies are revolutionizing almost every industry. Deploying Cloud-Based POS technology has become a necessity rather than a strategically important technology for restaurants in 2022. These systems come with an affordable subscription-based pricing model making them suitable for even small players in the industry.
Traditional POS fails to keep up with QSR’s operational speed and security – Cloud-based POS systems help because they have a faster processing time. Also, traditional POS systems often fail to integrate with various hardware systems or business applications, making owners’ life difficult. Cloud-Based POS systems remove this challenge.
A cloud-based POS solution provides real-time inventory, staff schedules & other related features to the business owners. This is a very useful technology in restaurants and comes with features like integrated payment technologies, enabling payments across any location or device, asking customers to opt for special service, integrating their online accounts, and crediting the rewards points in the systems and others.
Customer Experience in QSRs is going to be the overall differentiator
Technology has always enabled companies to reinvent their traditional ways of engaging with customers. Introduction of right technology in restaurants can lead to disruptive experiences that can quickly replace traditional players and shift the competitive landscape. The new generations are now coming into prominent roles of influencers and want similar brand experiences across multiple channels.
For QSRs, it is important to start tailoring their experiences for current and upcoming buyers and influencers. Helping customers find the locations, simplifying signup and loyalty programs, personalization, self-service check-outs, and biometric payments are critical to acquiring and retaining them. Qentelli can help you in Reimagining your Digital strategy with our next-generation offerings. Want to rewrite the possibilities of technology in QSR? Write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org