The pandemic forced the food and hospitality sector to fasten technology adoption in its different sections. Government restrictions required people to stay at home, making restaurants develop ways of delivering services using little to no human interaction.
Below are some of the top restaurant technology trends in 2021:
Food Delivery Robots
Autonomous food delivery vehicles are becoming popular in restaurants around the world. Domino recently tested self-driving cars in Las Vegas and Miami, which turned out to be a success. This technology will cut labor costs by significant margins as delivery drivers’ and waiters’ services might not be required.
Using robots to prepare and serve food in restaurants has its downside, like leading to increased unemployment rates. However, most companies are trying only to automate the complex duties in a restaurant so that waiters and other staff can focus on giving the clients a memorable experience.
Augment and Virtual Reality
AR is slowly transforming the customer experience department by doing unimaginable things without human interaction. A visual representation of food is given to customers through tablets that have replaced menus. As the food gets prepared, the AR engages clients through interactive games. This technology has also helped in marketing as customers receive personalised offers customised using the data from their order preferences.
The language barrier issue has been addressed and resolved through this technology as it comes with a translation system with almost all languages. Customers get to select their preferred language, which means all services on the application will be translated for them.
Ghost kitchens, also referred to as cloud kitchens or dark kitchens, refer to online restaurants with no physical location. They sell to customers who order through online platforms. Delivery is done through third-party services like Uber Eats. Companies like Occupyd have come up with a fantastic concept where they provide communal kitchen spaces with top-notch equipment through Deliveroo dark kitchens that offer the space to run operations.
A small restaurant can now rent a kitchen and cut operational costs since they will not have to own physical space or hire many employees.
Advanced Point of Sale (POS) Systems
Restaurant POS systems have embraced cloud technology where owners have an easy time taking orders and processing payments. Customers are now having it easy when ordering and paying for food online.
Some of the advantages of cloud-based POS systems include:
Accurate business reporting
Restaurant managers can now have reports of sales and expenses with minimal margins of error. POS systems can automatically generate these reports saving time for the managers and allowing them to make more accurate decisions.
Reduced Waiting Time
Ordering and making payments to restaurants is now instant, regardless of the mode of payment. Customers are able to complete an ordering process in less than 5 minutes, making it convenient and time-saving.
Better Ways of managing customers
POS system comes in handy when there is a lot of traffic in the restaurant and improved and efficient ways of managing customers as there are faster ways to establish bills and prepare the clients orders. Mangers and cashiers can establish customers bill and are more efficient.
Easier Sales tracking and Inventory management.
A takeaway pos system allows restaurants to track sales and manage inventory from a centralized interface. The kitchen team can receive orders, saving time used by waiters to communicate with the chefs. Reports provided by POS systems allow restaurant owners to make well-informed decisions in planning menus, staffing and marketing their products, Customer satisfaction is now easier to achieve as staff have more time to focus on creating memorable experiences for the customers.
Technology has facilitated the survival of the hospitality industry in an era that has demanded many abrupt changes. Customers today prefer the convenience and are ready to go ahead and pay the cost it comes with. Restaurants have had to understand the change in lifestyle among customers in order to adapt and grow in that direction.