For most restaurant owners, adopting new technology is uncharted territory. They have a love and hate relationship with technology. Integration of new restaurant technology not only increases profitability but also a crucial competitive edge. However, implementing new technology is an arduous procedure which when not followed correctly keeps most of these potential benefits at bay.
“A third of restaurant operators say they lag in tech use”, according to a report by National Restaurant Association (NRA) in 2016. It means that restaurant owners lack in adopting despite being well-informed about the numerous advantages of technology. Due to common mistakes, restaurants make when integrating new technology, they face outright failure or terrible execution, to say the least.
Also read: Must have restaurant technologies
Before going over those common mistakes, let’s understand why is restaurant technology imperative in this day and age:
Why Invest in Restaurant Technology?
Technology is enhancing every aspect of consumers’ lives and dining experience is no exception. The convenience offered by innovative restaurant technology combined with conventional dining hospitality is what diners want in today’s date. For this reason, restaurant technology is no longer considered a luxury. It has rather become a necessity for brands, big or small.
Technology is essential for improving several facets of the restaurant business including increased efficiency, cost-saving, and dining experience. This is why technology has infiltrated every realm of restaurant business such as operations, customer care, sustainability, and kitchen automation!
Click here to read the restaurant technology trends that are helping restaurants increase reservations & revenue.
6 Common Mistakes Made by Restaurant Owners in Adopting New Technology
There are several pitfalls of integrating a new restaurant technology. Without studying them, the investment will make your life difficult while you are trying to achieve the opposite.
Let’s explore them one after the other, shall we?
1. Misunderstanding the Needs
This is one of the most common restaurant mistakes owners make while incorporating new technology. If you are a restaurant owner, you may not feel obliged to include your employees in the decision-making process but it’s a grave mistake. Your decisions impact everyone including administration, line management, back of the house, and front of the house.
While it is not possible to include every staff member, you can certainly appoint a representative from each department. They can offer useful insights that will yield positive results in future. For every decision to be successful, you should involve those who will receive the impact in future.
2. Not Planning Enough
This is another common restaurant mistake observed while investing in a new technology. Lack of effective planning can create roadblocks to full-scale implementation of restaurant technology. While it’s not possible to predict everything, detailed planning will mitigate many potential risks during rollout.
The collective experience of your advisory team will offer valuable inputs that will result in successful rollout of new technology. Together you can devise solutions that will make the transformation seamless. Technological intervention creates significant disruption, in both positive and negative sense.
Through meticulous planning, your restaurant will reap enormous benefits in future.
3. Purchasing Wrong Software
There is no such thing as “perfect restaurant management software” out there. Every business has different requirements and thus invest in a software which meets those requirements. This is the reason why many restaurant technologies are underutilized. With numerous options available, it can be confusing for restaurant owners to choose one.
Choose a software which can substantially improve bookkeeping, guest experience, and restaurant operations. For instance, you can explore a suite of products offered by inResto such as reservation management software, feedback management system, marketing campaigns, website, and mobile application.
4. Not Training Staff
Not training staff members before purchasing a piece of software is one of the most common restaurant mistakes owners make. This is why you should train them on how to use the software and troubleshoot problems if they occur. Failing to do so can result in customer dissatisfaction which you absolutely want to avoid in the competitive restaurant business.
Imagine a scenario where a diner gets stuck while placing an order digitally and asks one of your staff members for help. If he or she isn’t able to do so, chances are the customer will get annoyed or frustrated and next time choose a competitor for dining out. Therefore, your staff must be well-versed with the intricacies of restaurant technology you have invested in.
5. Selecting Unwanted Features
As a restaurant owner, you want to hire a developer for creating a mobile application dedicated to online food delivery. You would want to check-off every feature on the list, right? Well! This is yet another common restaurant mistake that should be avoided. Adding numerous features is not the right approach as it makes the app heavy and bulky!
Customers do not appreciate a feature-rich, fancy mobile application. Instead, they want something which is simple and straightforward. Stuffing the app with too many features is a dreadful practice. Moreover, it will take more time to load everything, adding to the irritation of the user.
6. Downplaying Security Concerns
Because of the nature of digital solutions, security breaches have become quite common. The restaurant technology you are investing in should be secure enough to prevent external threats lurking online. Disregarding security concerns can cause reputational and financial losses for your restaurant.
Especially in food delivery apps, customers make financial transactions through their credit cards or debit cards. This information is extremely confidential which is why your software must be able to protect the users’ data. Same is true for CRM software and POS systems which have tons of data stored in digital format.
Therefore, you should choose a firm which has the reputation of developing secure restaurant technology in the business to prevent such losses.
Let’s Wind Up
Before dipping your toes in restaurant technology space, you must consider the above factors to minimize the risks involved. Choose the right software, involve your team, train your staff, do enough research and planning and limit the features to what is absolutely required. Just keep it simple and secure for everyone!