Given the risk of failure associated with many foodservice operations, those at the helm of bars, restaurants, and similar businesses need to do everything in their power to provide the best experience possible. But while great food and drinks are essential for getting customers to keep coming back, there’s more to foodservice success.
Bar and restaurant customers crave great food and drinks at a fair price like always, but they also want streamlined service options with minimal hassle. In today’s increasingly digital world, that means making significant investments in modern foodservice technology.
With that said, technology isn’t the only way bars and restaurants can better serve the modern customer. The following are six foodservice optimization tips covering a mix of technological improvements and old-fashioned efficiency:
Between supply shortages, seasonal item changes, and price adjustments over time, bars and restaurants need a way to keep their menus updated daily. That’s simply not possible with traditional printed menus. By having touchscreen menus installed at every table and ordering station, owners can better manage their offerings going forward. What’s more, touchscreen menus with credit and debit card readers are a more convenient way for customers to order and pay.
Demand for contactless food and drink services skyrocketed during the COVID-19 pandemic. People wanted to enjoy their favorite menu items without worrying about transmitting the virus to others or catching it themselves. While demand for contactless bar and restaurant transactions will wane once the pandemic winds down, many customers will continue preferring these options going forward.
There’s little to no reason for bars and restaurants to on paper documents for day-to-day business transactions. While a hard copy of the z-report and other comprehensive financial records is recommended, all receipts, kitchen orders, and open tabs should be managed digitally. A front-of-house point-of-sale system combined with a back-of-house kitchen display system means never worrying about paper and ink again. It also streamlines the service process by directly sending orders to line cooks and bartenders.
Another pandemic-based foodservice trend was skyrocketing demand for delivery. Even bars got in on the delivery wagon, finding ways to safely and securely send cocktails and other signature drinks to people at home. With so many third-party delivery services ready to do the work, all bars and restaurant owners ought to consider adding delivery to their list of service options. All it takes is finding ways to keep foods and drinks fresh for the duration of the trip. While not every menu option is suited for delivery, it’s safe to say foodservice operations can significantly increase sales simply by offering to deliver to homes and businesses.
Generally speaking, the smaller the menu, the faster your kitchen will operate. While it might seem counterintuitive to give the customer fewer options, the truth is most folks respond positively to limited menus. That’s because they have fewer decisions to make. Offering a handful of options instead of a wide variety will mean the food is made faster and the final product tastes fresher. Don’t believe it? Look no further than the Speedee Service System pioneered by the McDonald brothers.
We live at a time when most folks are trying to eat less. However, when ordering food from a restaurant, people want value. For many, that means big portions. While many restaurateurs are reluctant to grow serving sizes due to the need for more food supply, the cost of an extra scoop of french fries or thicker beef patty is a fraction of what can be generated from the mark-up on these products. Customers are less likely to notice paying an extra 50 cents than before if they’re getting significantly more food.
Statistically speaking, bars and restaurants are doomed to fail. But failure isn’t written in stone. Those in the foodservice industry have several tools and resources that help keep costs low, sales up, and food tasting better than ever. All they need to do is put them to use.