Digital has penetrated most sectors and catering is no exception. In recent years, digital has become a popular choice both at the table and behind the scenes in restaurants. This is linked to the awareness of restorers but also to the arrival of a good number of digital solutions that meet their needs.
Even if this sector is not destined to be 100% digitalized, since human contact is essential, digital has its place and even becomes necessary to develop and retain its customers. This need is linked to the fact that most customers themselves go on the Internet or use applications to choose their restaurant, book it and then rate it, as customers are becoming more and more demanding on the experience they have in the dining room.
We have therefore chosen to give you an overview of the essential digital tools for restaurateurs over 6 key steps in their daily lives.
For his recruitment a restaurateur can go through the classic online recruitment sites, but they are not always adapted to his needs. Indeed, in the catering sector, due to very high turnover and high seasonality, staff needs are often urgent and temporary. During some holiday weekends, during summer holidays, or even when a waiter is sick, restaurateurs may need immediate reinforcement of their staff. However, leaving an ad on the front of your door or drowning on a job offer site does not allow for quick recruitment.
To compensate for this, Brigadas well as Extracadrabralaunched a platform allowing restaurateurs to be put in contact with staff (waiters, cooks, etc.) for temporary periods. Brigad even promises restaurants to provide extra staff within the hour!
Beyond recruitment, catering teams are often quite large and need to be well managed. Indeed, catering offers a different work rhythm from office hours and over very wide time slots. It is therefore necessary to manage staff attendance schedules and take into account the constraints and availability of each person. Schedules are often different from one week to the next and it takes a lot of time for managers to constantly reissue them.
Several start-ups have launched themselves into this niche, including Skello which allows you to manage schedules and staff online. Their software allows you to create an automatic schedule in a few clicks, taking into account the rules and constraints specific to the staff and their contract.
Reservations, traditionally made by telephone, are now mainly made online. It is important to know that one in two French people book online in a restaurant. On the other hand, every other restaurant now offers an online booking service, so having an online booking system becomes a necessity.
Beyond that, it allows restaurateurs to guarantee more bookings, and to save time by centralizing all bookings, not to forget any and to better plan in advance the distribution of tables.
Several companies offer a reservation system for restaurateurs and ZenChef is one of them. This start-up offers a very complete service offering restaurant owners the opportunity to create their own website if they have not already done so and to insert a reservation system. This reservation system will then also allow restaurateurs to build customer loyalty since they can collect information about their customers and thus better understand their needs and communicate with them.
Always in the interests of time savings and customer satisfaction, digital cash and payment solutions are becoming essential for restaurateurs. Digitizing this step allows you to have faster orders, without forgetting (orders for tables of 12 are not always easy) and to make people pay faster too, with features such as splitting the bill, etc. Finally, this type of tool generally makes accounting easier since everything is recorded on the same system and analyses of the figures produced can be obtained.
This type of tool has been developed by several actors and we have selected 2 of them: Tiller Systems and L'addition which are really specialized in the catering sector and know this sector well. The functionalities of their tools are complete and constantly developing. For example, Tiller Systems has also developed an order and delivery module connected to the cash register, allowing restaurateurs to offer an easy-to-manage online ordering option. The Addition offers a stock management option in the tool, allowing you to manage in real time the availability of dishes in the kitchen and items to order.
Beyond payment, the overall management of stocks, deliveries, cost of dishes, etc. All this takes time and requires a very good organization to keep your margin and ensure that all the ingredients for the dishes are available every day.
This management can gain in productivity thanks to digital tools of
restaurant management. First of all, we can mention Easilyswhich permits to control each step of the process from procurement to service. This requires the management of supplier orders in some cases.ues clicks, the management of recipe sheets, the follow-up
i stocks and inventories that improve product traceability, and monthly expenditure and revenue management. It is a very complete solution that centralizes the entire process and increases its productivity and profitability. This also makes it possible to manage several establishments at the same time.
In the same vein, there are FoodMeUp which is a more specialized toolalisé: it is a technical data sheet management tool for restorers that allows them to reference all the information relating to the articles used and their use through recipe data sheets. They plan to add additional options to their solutions, such as one-click ordering of item lists.
Restaurant owners often like to buy directly from the producer or at least buy good products to guarantee a quality cuisine. However, it also takes a long time to first find these suppliers as the offer is so wide and diverse, and then to manage relationships with them to replenish their supplies, know what products are available, etc. 86%* of restaurateurs even say they would like an application to buy directly from local producers. FoodTech actors have heard this need and found solutions. By centralizing the offer and reducing the number of intermediaries, it is possible for restaurateurs to always find quality products at competitive prices while saving time.
For the supply of products in the kitchen, we have found two start-ups with different approaches:
Another supply, separate from that of ingredients and which is equally important is the supply of wine. Finding good wines at a good price is possible and the best is when you buy them directly from the producer. However, it quickly becomes complicated since a restaurant owner will most of the time want to serve wine from different regions and therefore from different estates. This means ordering from a number of estates and/or suppliers to get a complete wine offer.
Here again, digital has found its place, particularly with PRO Clusterswhich offers catering professionals the opportunity to purchase wine directly from producers via their platform: here too, there is a time saving since producers are centralised on a single platform and invoicing is unique, even when an order groups several producers.
You now have all the weapons in hand to digitize your establishment and thus save you time, money and satisfy your customers as well as possible!
* Source: FoodServiceVision study "Digital catering 2018 : Words from restaurateurs and guests"