December 12, 2016

Retain Top Staff with Technology

Too often the use of technology in restaurants is viewed in simplistic terms.  Some servers view it as a threat.  Something that can eliminate jobs.  In reality, technology is primarily a tool to improve productivity, much like a laptop or a smartphone.  As such it produces a win/win situation for both servers and restaurateurs. Servers benefit, because technology like a tabletop system can allow them to better attend to diners […]
November 28, 2016

Diners Want Control

Technology is a tool that can increase hospitality by giving diners more control.  And it’s a factor that has become more critical as consumers have grown accustomed to using smartphones in their daily lives.  Information at your fingertips.  The ability to purchase anything of interest wherever you are.  Ubiquitous new services like Uber that can summons a ride on demand.  Increasingly, consumers expect to have this sort of control.  All […]
November 21, 2016

Faster EMV is Coming

EMV has met with resistance by consumers, as transaction processing time has been slow compared with the more familiar mag stripe process.  As a result, both consumers and merchants have complained.  Hearing these complaints, the major payment card companies such as Visa and MasterCard have developed new technologies to accelerate transactions.  Or at least create the *perception* among consumers that they have accelerated transactions. Visa has released a technology called […]
November 14, 2016

CNP Fraud a Growing Issue for Restaurants

Restaurants have decades of experience learning to identify and prevent fraudulent purchases.  At a minimum, most have learned to minimize chargebacks.  But changing trends make restaurants increasingly vulnerable to a new type of threat.  Card Not Present (CNP) Fraud. An issue for many years for online commerce vendors and those that sell over the phone, CNP Fraud is likely to become a larger issue for restaurants in the coming years. […]
November 8, 2016

Minimum Wage Ballot Measures to Watch for Election Day 2016

UPDATE (November 9): With most votes counted, voters in Arizona, Colorado, Maine and Washington State have all approved the ballot measures outlined below.  Generally by wide margins from the mid 50’s to 60%.  In South Dakota, by a wide margin of 71% to 29% (with 99% of precincts reporting) voters rejected a measure to *lower* the minimum wage for people under age 18. President-Elect Trump has expressed support for an […]
November 7, 2016

Redefine Social

We’ve all been there.  Sitting with friends or family, and nobody is talking to one another.  In fact, nobody is even *looking* at one another.  Instead, they’re all staring at their phones. A decade after the introduction of the smartphone, a bit of a “smartphone backlash” has come about.  Or at least fatigue with being constantly connected.  Increasingly, people are concerned about being present in the moment. Somewhere along the […]
October 31, 2016

“Lunch is for Wimps”

Was Gordon Gekko the person who killed lunch?  In the 1987 movie “Wall Street” Gekko uttered “Lunch is for Wimps”.  At the time the lunch hour was still common, and most people still went out every day to eat with friends or colleagues.  Since then lunch has made a precipitous decline. Today, lunch is used just as often for errands, FaceBook or working.  A survey by staffing agency OfficeTeam found […]
October 25, 2016

Will Restaurants Become the next “Brick-and-Mortar” Retailers? Part Two

In last week’s blog post we examined the history of online retailing and how restaurants and delivery have become the new focus for online business.  In this week’s post, we’ll examine the impact of the smartphone, big data, and why restaurant delivery is now an area of interest for online sellers. My Phone is My Life, My App My Menu The introduction of the mobile smartphone has radically changed the […]
October 17, 2016

Will Restaurants Become the next “Brick-and-Mortar” Retailers?

This week we start a two-part series on the change that is coming to the Restaurant Industry.  In Part 1, we’ll look at the history of online retailing, and the new focus on restaurants by online businesses. Online Sellers Turn Retail Upside-Down opened for business in 1995.  Just two decades ago.  Starting off with the sale of books, it has expanded into practically every major shopping category.  Along the […]
October 10, 2016

Technology helps redefine Hospitality

In previous posts we’ve looked at how technology can improve service by speeding ordering and payment processing, giving wait staff more time to focus on diners.  But technology also improves hospitality in less obvious ways. For instance, our Presto System™ provides new entertainment options like games.  In our increasingly interconnected, “always on” society, diners are looking for a broader experience than just ordering and waiting for their food to be […]
October 3, 2016

Retention Becomes More Difficult

Retention has always been a challenge for restaurant operators, becoming more difficult every year since 2010.  In 2015 annual employee turnover in the Restaurants-and-Accommodations Sector increased to 72.1%, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.  Not only does this represent an increase from 66.7% in 2014, it’s also 57% higher than the Total U.S. Private Sector annual turnover of 45.9%.  Yearly increases in turnover are on pace to reach the […]
September 26, 2016

Has 2016 Brought a Restaurant Recession?

Recently there has been increasing chatter concerning a “Restaurant Recession”. This follows a number of negative indicators, including: A 1.5% – 2% decline in same-store restaurant comparables across all categories in Q2 2016 (Stifel Financial). Sales declines in 3 of the last 6 months through July, as reported by U.S. News Magazine. Declining sales at fast-casual restaurants for the first time since 2004, according to NPD. Creative Explanations Explanations for […]
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