The pandemic altered the way that the restaurant industry operates. People's thoughts and expectations of the restaurant business have shifted. This affects all restaurant types both big and small. As we come out of the pandemic, there are lasting changes that businesses need to adapt to stay afloat.
Staffing Shortages in Restaurants
Shutdowns during COVID-19 created a major concern about staffing issues. This is due to a shortage in wait staff and difficulty filling positions in restaurants since reopening.
According to a recent study, Canada’s largest manufacturing employer, the food and beverage industry, is facing a debilitating labor shortage. This threatens to cripple Canada’s food system as we know it. Companies that together, employ almost 300,000 Canadians were reporting vacancies of above 20%, even before absences due to COVID-19 (Senate Canada). This means restaurants are running at lower capacity, unable to find people to fill the gaps.
This has made a forced reduction of services, resulting in restaurants having to cut opening hours and days (Forbes). This creates many challenges for all restaurant types, including slower operating speed and loss of revenue. These barriers make it harder for restaurants to adapt to reopening and staying open.
Reduced staff has also increased wait times as staff spends time taking orders and waiting for payment processing. This is a challenge in a world where customers are looking for shorter wait times and are gravitating towards pick-up orders and takeout, rather than in-person dining (MIQ). Customers are also looking for more contactless and social-distancing options post-pandemic.
So what does this mean for the restaurant industry going forward?
Lasting Pandemic Effects on Dining
Recent studies found that 61% of customers are less likely to order from a touch screen used by others. 57% of customers are also more likely to use their own device to order and pick up their meals than before Covid (McKinsey). Meaning that even post-pandemic, customers still want more options available to be socially distant and remain Covid-safe while dining.
Another study has shown that people are spending more time looking at more restaurant options online before choosing to put in an order. They are also going through more sessions before adding an item to their basket. In addition, 63% of orders are made from mobile phones (MIQ). Restaurants that do not have digitized menus online, miss out on the opportunity to be discovered by new customers.
These statistics highlight how important it is for restaurants to find a system and a way of operating that can adapt to this new normal.
Shifting Towards Digital POS
There has been a large increase in digitization for many restaurants as a result of COVID-19. This has caused a massive shift towards using digital POS systems. People have become much more dependent on technology than before the pandemic. Contactless payment methods and online orders have played a huge role in this (Forbes). Customers have begun to expect restaurants to use these advances in technology and online connection. This is why restaurant workers are able to gain from technology made to help make their jobs easier.
Restaurants that are able to adjust to this change can join the benefits that the food industry has gained by shifting to a digital working model. It has helped them reduce costs and increase performance (Forbes). Hence, finding a digital POS system to match your needs is extremely important.
Digital Dining Software Solution
BNA Digital Dining is the perfect solution for navigating the post-pandemic restaurant industry. It is easy to use, helps merchants to operate faster, and improves the experience of their customers. In turn, it creates returning customers time and time again.
So, how does this digital POS system work?
Using any smartphone, customers are able to scan a customizable QR code. This lets them browse the digital menu, without needing to download an app. Through the Digital Dining software, customers can order their meals for either pick-up, delivery, or table service. They are also able to pay from their phones through the Digital Dining software right away. This eliminates wait times for the bills that need to be dropped off and picked up.
BNA Digital Dining eliminates the need to provide menus, take orders, deliver bills, and accept payment. So, staff can use their time better and are free to focus on delivering orders. This can help restaurant teams operate with a skeleton staff, requiring fewer people to service more customers. The digitized menu both prevents customers from having to worry about touching previously touched surfaces and gives them more COVID-safe options. It also gives customers a much faster response time. This gives restaurants more table turnover, which is more profitable. It also maintains social distancing and aids in the safety of staff and customers.
BNA’s Digital POS System
BNA Digital Dining makes things simpler for staff and restaurants. It allows them to adapt faster to the rapidly changing service industry. Everything is easily accessible on a Merchant Portal. This makes it simple for merchants and restaurant managers to do numerous things. They can access their digital POS, run reports, create discounts, and turn on or off their different services. They can even set up timed menus, update their menu items, view customer insights and much more. This Merchant Portal is accessible through a BNA Digital Dining POS Terminal, kitchen printer, or personal device (eg. smartphone or tablet).
64% of staff say they would be happier if their venue had tech which led them to focus on customer experience (Mckinsey). It is important to hear this and create changes to aid in their success and your restaurant’s. Using BNA’s Digital Dining POS system is the best solution to helping your staff to adapt, by streamlining processes to allow more accurate and speedy services.
Help you and your staff adjust better to the new normal of the post-COVID restaurant industry. Find out more here.