Faced with empty dining rooms and idle staff, keeping the lights on and the kitchen burners lit during the COVID-19 crisis is probably the most difficult challenge your restaurant has faced.To cope, many owners have chosen to make the rapid adjustment to an online-based restaurant instead of shutting doors for the duration.
We would like to give you a helping hand in making these choices, which is why we are presenting you with a step-by-step guide to ease your transition into the online delivery space. Following this handful of items will help you to maximize the benefits of your POS solution while giving you a final operating strategy that you can feel confident about.
Determine Your New Internal Workflow
A change in your business model necessitates a change to how your workflows are designed. Creating a new workflow strategy that takes advantage of the cutting-edge you now have in place can actually be a fun task, especially if you allow staff to contribute to the process.
This presents you with a great opportunity for internal collaboration. Letting your staff participate makes any new workflows easy to understand. It will also contribute to deepened staff loyalty by making them like valued employees. Through this process small and easily forgotten tasks, such as pre-staging bags with cutlery or napkins, can be added to the flow of your staff’s daily routine. This better ensures that nothing gets missed in physical preparations, allowing you to then focus on the technology side of things.
The new workflow you and your staff develop must follow the line of technology from the moment a customer opens your app up until the time of delivery. A shortlist of items to consider in doing so is:
- Setting up a notification in your POS system when an order has been placed.
- Freezing an order from moving into your KDS until payment has been confirmed.
- Rejecting incomplete orders, such as those missing delivery address or payment details.
- Letting your KDS notify your delivery coordinator of completed orders.
- Allowing your drivers to use your app to close out orders once delivered.
Using this list as a guide towards developing your own strategy will cover the basics of ensuring that the appropriate data is going to the right place at the right time. This makes coordination between your staff seamless and effortless while providing full transparency of the process to your anxious, hungry customers. It is through these transparent and easy to execute tasks that will help to bridge the gap between physical and digital interactions.
Transitioning Personal Experiences to the Virtual World
Gone for now are in-person interactions between servers and the customers. Replacing your customer interactions with virtual ones does present a new set of challenges around keeping your customers engaged. Instead of relying on the eyes and ears you once had on the floor, you must now rely almost exclusively on data and, to a lesser extent, the inputs of your delivery staff. Losing these customer-facing interactions, and knowing that all orders will now be taken literally, requires a heavier leaning on your other business senses.
Data will play a heavy part in keeping your customer’s attention. You will rely on data (link to data post here) to generate the personal touches that only your servers once could provide, including the recommendations that your regulars grew to expect from their favorite servers. So how can you build this level of intuitive customer service into a technology-driven POS platform? What can you do to maintain the highest levels of customer service through an online ordering app?
Communication and a clean interface are the keys to success in holding the attention of your diners. Setting up in-app notifications that can be displayed on a phone’s lock screen, or setting up text alerts, will allow customers to track the progress of their order. Merging the data from a customer’s past dining experiences in your restaurant with their delivery orders will allow you to better establish enticing promotions that will keep your customers coming back for more.
Make Setting up Online Ordering for Your Restaurant Simple
Keeping things running smoothly and without any extra effort is imperative to keep things as simple as possible, especially while making the transition from being a host to accepting online orders. Implementing the right POS solution is only the start; you must know how to adapt your workflows and customer-facing interfaces to this change in strategy. It doesn’t make sense to shoulder this load alone, especially when help is a few clicks away.
We offer experienced POS consultants that would love to help you meet the changes in your business model. The solution we design and the nuances we put into play will help you to address any regulatory changes that come your way, while keeping you, your staff, and your customers safe during the COVID-19 crisis.
We at talech want to assist customers that have been financially impacted by COVID-19, in light of restricted movements in cities and towns across the country. We have launched a number of initiatives to help customers during this time. Click here to find out more or reach out to our Support Team at firstname.lastname@example.org