New Ways to Use Restaurant Technology

While some restaurant owners are still using outdated technologies, entrepreneurs gathered at New York City’s Restaurant Technology Summit earlier this month to discuss the new on-the-edge technologies can improve customer experiences and help business owners make their companies more efficient.

Here are some cutting edge technologies that are worth keeping your eye on.

Culture and morale monitoring

How do you know if your employees are happy to come to work? Moreover, how do you know their answer to that question is the truth?

Celebrated entrepreneur Danny Meyer of Union Square Hospitality Group answered both questions by revealing how they use tech to get a quick read on the mood of their team during each shift. His company has developed what they call a “Trust Index”, a methodology that asks participants a variety of questions that boil down to “are you happy to work here?” according to Meyer.

If an employee’s answers are generally negative, that means their experience isn’t matching up with their expectations. This information can help business owners find ways to address these issues before they begin to breed a toxic work culture. It can also help business owners understand why good employees quit.

Selecting a Location Based on Traffic

Everyone has met that one business owner who picked their restaurant location simply because they thought the building looked nice. Typically, that business owner is also swimming in debt to keep their business alive because they’re not driving enough traffic to their location.

Velvet Taco and their CEO Clay Dover are trying to keep other business owners from making that same mistake by utilizing the location feature on most smart phones to track the movement of customers at all times of the day.

Similar traffic data collection methods include the use of WiFi, but Dover argues that this is a highly ineffective method for one simple reason: it only counts phones that have previously connected to your network.  For business owners who are concerned about growing their customer base (which I assume is all of them), they need to utilize traffic data collection methods that find potential customers such as mobile location data. These potential customers are oftentimes the deciding factor on whether or not to open a new location in a particular spot.

Going Green(er)

Reducing waste is a large part of any business. But, for an industry that runs on food consumption, it is especially important for restaurants to be conscious of how much waste they generate.

Snooze, a breakfast concept from Denver, Colorado, is utilizing technology to help their employees become more environmentally conscious and reduce waste in their business. They are doing this by composting food that would otherwise be thrown away, ensuring recyclables end up recycled and focusing on educating their employees on different aspects of sustainability each month. 

Ensuring your restaurant is using LED light bulbs, purchasing energy efficient equipment when it is time to upgrade and reducing receipt and other paper waste are other ways to use technology to go a little bit greener.  


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