During the past decade a technology revolution has taken place in the restaurant industry. What once was viewed as equipment and systems that made economic sense for only large, multi-unit restaurants, are now common place even among smaller, one-restaurant independents.
Technology has had and will continue to have a profound impact on the industry. On a practical level, high tech applications have already helped operators improve ordering functions, ticket times, table turns, inventory control, kitchen organization and accuracy, bookkeeping tasks and the capture and the timely reporting of operational information. Just to name a few.
In the not too distant future, it may be possible for even the smallest operators to do their bidding, ordering and product procurement electronically, over the Internet. Once the product is received, checked-in and compared to the order, inventory levels will be adjusted, product prices brought current and up-to-the-minute recipe and ideal food costs available, to operators with no human intervention.
Some independent operators are using technology to gain a competitive advantage in their marketplace. Wireless headsets and table management systems improve table utilization and customer database systems allow some to better identify and take care of their best customers and enable service personnel to become familiar with their guests’ preferences and buying habits on the spot.
The reality is, no matter what your size, these days, it’s extremely difficult to compete, without utilizing technology to some degree.
Although some owners, operators and managers have embraced technology and applied it with zeal, most are too busy or just aren’t inclined to become a part-time tech junkie. Our objective in this section, is to provide helpful, commonsense, non-technical information on the application of technology in typical, independent restaurant environments. The goal is to help you keep abreast of what’s going on in this area and help you make better, more informed technology decisions that will have a positive effect on your customers, people and bottom-line.