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From Myth to Reality: How AI and Automation are Revolutionizing the Foodservice Industry

Published on September 26, 2023
By PAR Team

When we talk about automation and AI in the foodservice industry, the first thing that comes to mind are robots flipping burgers and delivering drinks to customers. Introducing some of the most innovative tech trends available in the market doesn’t necessarily mean that restaurants need to eliminate human involvement from their operations. It simply means they can upgrade from pen-and-paper processes to AI-supported back-of-the-house tasks with “invisible technology” that improves overall process efficiency. 

Operators today are already exploring cutting-edge solutions that involve automation and AI to solve some of the biggest problems faced by restaurants nowadays – issues with the supply chain, inflation, and labour shortages. Some of the biggest restaurant chains such as Chipotle, Subway and Domino’s superior customer service.

AI implementation holds limitless potential. It can address some of the most burning challenges, such as:

Supply Chain Disruptions:
AI and ML algorithms assist restaurants in predicting demand, preventing food waste, and optimizing inventory management, which is crucial in managing supply chain complexities.

Challenging economic conditions:
AI-driven analytics help restaurants analyze market trends and adjust menu prices dynamically based on ingredient costs and demand. This ensures profitability despite the ongoing inflation.

Labor shortages:
AI and robotics, such as self-ordering kiosks and robotic servers, mitigate labour shortages by streamlining operations and allowing staff to focus on customer interaction and food quality.

Poor customer experience:
AI can enhance customer experience by offering personalized recommendations tailored to their preferences.

By analyzing data from customers’ purchase histories and their social media profiles, AI systems can create customized menu suggestions and promotions. This personalized approach provides a unique dining experience, different from the traditional one-size-fits-all menu.

“One of the areas that is essential when it comes to AI is personalization”, said Marlon Koch, VP of Product, MENU. “Being able to deliver a more personalized experience is a big part of that, leveraging the data that you have about the consumer in the right way.”

The Path Forward: Embracing the AI Revolution

At MENU, we are constantly optimizing our solutions so that we can offer sophisticated technology that improves performance of multi-unit restaurant brands, while also boosting customer satisfaction.

Based on an intelligent algorithm, MENU’s Dispatch solution can automatically assign delivery orders to the most suitable driver from the best matching Delivery Service Provider’s fleet. Estimated delivery times based on the automatically assigned driver’s location are immediately updated on all channels, which helps restaurant brands reduce staff workload and improves processes.

Discover how MENU’s commitment to innovation and efficiency can revolutionize your restaurant’s operations and lead you towards a more profitable and streamlined future
Tiffany Disher, General Manager, MENU North America

Tiffany Disher

General Manager, MENU North America

Tiffany Disher, General Manager, MENU North America, an omni-channel ordering solution to futureproof restaurant’s growing digital sales needs. Before taking on this new role in January 2023, she was an integral part of Punchh’s growth story. She has advised hundreds of customers over the past eight years on their loyalty strategies both from a base program standpoint as well as ongoing marketing strategies. Before Punchh, Tiffany worked for Schlotzsky’s where she supported the brand marketing team by leading loyalty, eClub, R&D, Franchise advisory council and marketing analytics. Tiffany has her Bachelor’s of Science in Economics from University of Oregon and Master’s in Business with a specialty in Marketing from Baylor University. An avid golfer, hiker and mom of two small children, Tiffany spends her limited free time entering into baking competitions.