Why your restaurant should be using technology

Megan Lipscombe

Megan Lipscombe

Head of Marketing

Technology has become more and more important to restaurateurs over the past 12 months, as a direct result of COVID-19. The likes of track and trace and contactless ordering/payments have become essential to helping customers feel safe when visiting restaurants during the pandemic. In fact, 40% of consumers say they feel safer in venues that use mobile tech.

But technology has and always will be important in the hospitality industry, so it’s important not to overlook it. Here are a few examples of how it could benefit your business post pandemic.

Greater efficiency

By reducing the time your employees have to spend on admin-heavy tasks, and therefore freeing up time for the more important things, technology can help you significantly increase efficiency. And you certainly aren’t limited in terms of solutions that can help you do this, to name a few…

  • EPOS & Booking systems
    A combination of ePOS and a booking system will not only enable you to easily place orders, generate bills, take contactless payments and monitor bookings vs walk-ins; you’ll also have a real-time overview of sales and available produce. Together these solutions will help you improve efficiency, customer service and your reporting.
  • Rota scheduling 
    What do you envisage when you think of your staff rota? Many restaurateurs are still manually building rotas using excel or even just pen and paper; an inefficient and extremely time consuming approach. The person responsible for building the rota needs to account for numerous factors. This includes employee contracted hours, availability, scheduled holiday and forecasted bookings/footfall. Having a system in place to take care of this for you could save a considerable amount of time; as well as increasing the accuracy of your staff schedules.
  • Time & attendance
    As is the case with staff scheduling, many restaurateurs are still taking a very manual approach to monitoring staff time. The time waste here doesn’t come from the actual process of staff clocking in and out. It’s collating the data after, comparing scheduled to actual hours and using this data to then inform payroll. Implementing a way for staff to clock in and out digitally, via facial recognition, location or a unique pin, will not only eliminate the risk of buddy clocking but allow you to capture accurate data on hours worked. This data can then be pulled into payroll and ensure wages are calculated correctly.
  • Payroll
    Using a payroll system to generate payslips and pay wages will certainly save time for your finance team. But the potential benefits don’t stop there. Ensuring your payroll system speaks to your workforce management and HR systems, means you can feed in data on things such as employee hours and contracts. This can then be combined with data on tax codes, pension schemes and student loans; ensuring you consistently deliver perfect payroll and without the added time or effort.

Happier employees

Introducing tech to your restaurant business can help you increase employee happiness by saving your team time, improving communication and generally making life easier for them. 

Implementing a workforce management system could help you do just that. Not only will it help you as a manager by enabling you to build staff rotas informed by employee contracts, availability and forecasted demand. Those that have been developed as a tool for the employee and the employer will also benefit your staff.

Providing your employees with the option to clock in and out, manage their shifts, request time off or switch shifts all from their phone, gives them the further element of control and visibility that so many desire. 

This combined with the likes of contactlass payment systems, mobile ordering, EPOS and reservation systems, will all contribute to employee happiness. Especially if you integrate your business solutions so they work seamlessly with one another. 

When it comes to improving employee happiness you can’t go wrong when handing your staff tools to make their jobs easier. And showing your employees that their happiness is important to you will only help strengthen your relationship with them, gain respect and as a result bring benefit to your business.

Perfect customer experience

Investing in tech doesn’t just benefit the people within your business. It means you can provide your customers with the very best experience, giving them reason to come back time and time again.

Evidence of where technology has influenced return custom was the introduction of WiFi. In fact, nearly two-thirds of customers are more likely to re-visit a bar or restaurant if they’re able to access WiFi. What was once a ‘nice to have’ is now very much a ‘must have’.

A few years on, with the ongoing developments of restaurant technology and over a year into the pandemic; there’s so much more to consider than just WiFi. If you haven’t already, consider introducing online reservations, contactless payments and, if you’re going for the self-serve approach, mobile ordering.

Whatever you decide, put yourself in the shoes of your customers. Be it a practicality or a gimmick, consider what you would want to see from your favourite restaurant.

And that’s a wrap…

Not all businesses are the same of course, so you’ll need to determine what’s right for you. But it’s important to consider all of your options and implement the solutions that will benefit you the most. Take onboard what has and hasn’t worked over the last year; you may even want to turn to your peers and customers for advice. 

If you would like more information on how Rotaready’s rota scheduling, time & attendance and payroll offering can help you increase efficiency and make more time for what matters most, then email us at team@rotaready.com or drop us a message via live chat.

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