Technology has changed everything about how to improve the customer experience in a restaurant, from how food gets ordered to how the restaurant operates. From the guest's perspective, technologies adopted by connected restaurants can, for example, enable mobile micro-location promotions by proximity, luring in hungry pedestrians and travelers. Food can be ordered through an app, while sensor-based solutions automatically notify staff when a guest is at the restaurant for curbside pickup. Customers who are dining in can now self-order and pay at their tables using their phones or tablets, reducing the wait time for someone to come take an order or bring a check.
This can help significantly increase worker efficiency and productivity because servers can focus on ensuring a top-notch dining experience instead of processing orders and payments. When guests place their own orders, the food is prepared exactly as ordered, with no risk of misunderstanding by a waiter writing down the wrong order or forgetting a special request. Also, keep in mind that the more you improve the customer experience and make guests happy, your staff could become more satisfied, which could help you overcome the hiring and retention challenges that face the restaurant industry.
In addition to improving the customer experience in a connected restaurant, technology is improving how restaurants operate. For example, the Internet of Things (IoT) and artificial intelligence (AI) can now be used to track restaurant inventory such as ingredients to automatically order more when needed, while food temperatures can be analyzed to help prevent spoilage or guest illness. Analytics can provide new insights into meal popularity and surge times, helping chefs determine new options and managers to adequately staff.
A connected restaurant that relies on technology to deliver a winning guest experience needs to now focus as much on its network as it does its menu. That means leveraging an on-site LTE/private wireless network that can provide the high-speed, low-latency bandwidth required to power use cases like IoT, AI, and cloud platforms connecting the restaurant to corporate headquarters and customer-facing technologies such as video, interactive menus and more.