Technology will save the restaurant business – how to fight the labor shortage in restaurants
Automation has been with us for a long time. Restaurants are increasingly looking favorably on its benefits, especially in the wake of recent events. Pandemic decided to fight the economy, but it beat the catering sector the most. Hoteliers and restaurateurs are bringing technology to their venues that can solve cash flow and labor shortages.
Post-pandemic problems of Polish gastronomy
The Environmental Protection Bank issued a report in April this year, in which it describes that “The restaurant sector is among the activities most adversely affected by the coronavirus pandemic.” To confirm such a statement, he cites data from the Economic Chamber of Polish Catering, which show that after half a year of the epidemic, up to 8 thousand have declared bankruptcy. outlets. The report also points to surveys of the platform briefly.en. According to these surveys:
- as many as 8% of restaurants were closed down,
- 25% have completely suspended operations,
- while 60% of catering establishments operate on a limited basis, offering meals to go or takeaway.
Indicators also show that takeaway revenue only covers about. 10% of sales made by restaurants before the epidemic.
There are exceptions to every rule, and in this case it’s pizzerias and sushi bars, which were already making money mostly from delivery.
The vast majority of venues have been forced to start operating on the basis of takeaway orders. This is a veritable revolution, which one food service expert disagrees with, saying that the product itself, food, may lose out.
– Unless you’re in the business of selling pizza, sushi, or Asian or Indian rice dishes, don’t push for delivery solutions. Your food is your brand, so if it does not withstand delivery, why spoil your reputation by offering an inferior version of what tastes delicious in your restaurant? – argues John Gabrovic, founder and managing director at Inspire Real Estate Advisory.
He is also seen to be embarrassed by situations where guests of the establishment have had to wait more than 20 minutes to place their order because the staff is busy following the instructions of the owners, who prefer to sell orders in delivery. If necessary, the authors recommend creating “ghost kitchen”, that is, a kitchen dedicated to fulfilling only such orders and creating a network of own deliveries and trusted drivers.
What restaurateurs are afraid of?
Among the biggest concerns of restaurateurs are inflation, i.e., increased cost of doing business, but also increasing the cost of your products, which may negatively impact customer perception. Fear of this phenomenon is shown by 61% of restaurateurs.
In second place is finding competent staff, who will be willing to work for the right pay. This is what 54% of owners fear, which is not surprising. Pandemic, limited capacity and staffing problems, rising inflation and the specter of a new order are effectively driving restaurateurs into the seats, thinking about the lack of qualified staff who in addition might not have realistic financial expectations for work.
Interestingly, the shortage problem goes much further than the foodservice market. ManpowerGroup study titled. “Talent Shortage” showed that 81% of Polish employers have great difficulty in finding new employees. The group’s press office reports that Poland is among the top ten global markets in the worst situation. The Green Line website also mentions that 7% of companies have started to lower their requirements for employees, and 4% of them are even changing their entire business models. Unfortunately, the owners of restaurants cannot afford to lower the requirements, as they are responsible for catering their customers, which means they have to take care of good taste and professional service of their guests. In addition, be sure to meet HACCP standards, i.e. critical control points, and other technical and sanitary requirements.
How to combat the restaurant labor shortage?
Portal horecanet.pl finds that a technology handyman will be great in a restaurant.
Of course, we are still a long way from full robotization in Poland automation is no longer a challenge for us. For example, with the help of the RATIONAL iVario, which is a multitasking machine that replaces pots, pans, fryers, pressure cookers, grill pans and bemars at the same time!
BusinessInsider also mentions ten McDonald’s restaurants in Chicago, where it has been implemented test program of automatic drive-thru shutters and about Dave’s network&Buster’s, where plans to expand Contactless meal ordering services.
As achievements of technology in this sector can be mentioned such solutions as: QR menus, online reservation and ordering systems or loyalty systems.
Self-service restaurants are also becoming more and more popular self-service points for ordering food visible not only in large chain stores. – In Asia or the USA, self-service restaurants are slowly becoming a standard. Automating customer ordering is the answer to their needs, and a properly planned User Experience will allow you to provide the highest quality of service – says Daniel Parzych, CEO Frivo (frivo.en)
In our article we also wrote about using an application as a mobile waiter, In Asia and the USA self-service restaurants are becoming the standard, where guests can order food and the staff can take these orders while serving other guests at the same time. There also seems to be a clear need to innovate kitchen appliances to make us more efficient in the kitchen.
Technology is not only an opportunity for today’s restaurants, but it is what can help them the most. Their owners have an opportunity to meet their business objectives while implementing ways to automate the company’s management model.