Servicemeddelelse: Vi oplever problemer med serveren i øjeblikket - Vores udbyder er på sagen.

What can you do if you experience a shortage of waiters in your restaurant?

What can you do if you experience a shortage of waiters in your restaurant?

During the Corona pandemic, there has been a great focus on keeping distance from each other, minimizing the number of contact surfaces and optimizing general hygiene. At the same time, it has been a challenge for many restaurateurs to acquire a sufficient number of employees, and some restaurants have even had to close some days of the week due to staff shortages.

Therefore, many restaurateurs have been forced to rethink the way they run their restaurant, which is why the focus was particularly directed towards self-ordering solutions. These solutions solved several of the restaurateurs’ challenges, and at the same time they have been well received by the guests, and the guests have gradually become familiar with and happy to use the self-ordering solutions – especially among the younger generation.

At the same time, it is still a big challenge for many restaurateurs to get enough staff to run the restaurant normally. There is therefore no doubt that the pandemic has acted as a catalyst for the demand for these solutions, and we are now experiencing increased interest. Therefore, we have created this article to focus on how restaurateurs can meet the new needs of guests and which alternative solutions can be used when there is a lack of staff.

QR self-ordering system

One of the solutions that has really gained traction during the corona pandemic is the use of QR ordering. It typically takes place in such a way that at each table in the restaurant there is a small sticker or a stand with a QR code. The guests themselves scan this QR code with their mobile phone, after which they are directed to the restaurant’s digital menu card, either via an app or directly to a mobile-friendly website. Here, guests have the opportunity to view the entire menu, order what they want and make payment at the same time. The kitchen and bar are then notified of what has been ordered, and the waiter delivers the food and drinks to the table in question when it is ready. It therefore takes place much like when ordering take away, and therefore it is advantageous to connect a take away module, so that the restaurant has the opportunity to sell take away from its own unique site.

The QR solution was also in demand before the pandemic, but not at all to the same extent as now. This was probably due to the perception among many restaurateurs that the service provided by the waiter is a large part of going out to eat. It is certainly still the case for most guests, but that is why it can be good to have a supplement – especially if the alternative is long waiting times or that the empty tables cannot be filled up. And then it is up to the restaurateur to what extent the supplement is to be used.

The QR self-ordering system provides several advantages. Among the most noteworthy is, that it makes the process significantly easier for the waiters and guests, as the waiter does not have to go down to the guest’s table and take the order and payment, and the guests do not have to wait unnecessarily to place the order and complete the payment. At the same time, the guests themselves can continuously order more, such as an extra drink, and the waiter therefore does not have to pay the same attention to the table, and the guests again do not have to wait unnecessarily to catch the waiter’s attention.

The system can easily be used alone, but then there is still a need for a waiter to bring the drinks and food to the guest’s table. However, it can be further supplemented with a silent ordering system, and then it is actually possible to operate even larger restaurants with a minimum of waiters.

Silent ordering system

Silent Ordering System is a discreet guest call in the form of a small piece, which makes it possible to communicate with guests in an efficient and pleasant way. Once guests have ordered and paid for their food, they are equipped with an electronic chip. They take the electronic chip to their table. When the food is ready, an electronic signal is sent to the chip, which discreetly beeps and flashes, so that the guest now knows that the food is ready and can be collected. The solution is mainly used in fast-service restaurants, bistros, cafeterias and street foods, but the solution can also be very useful in traditional restaurants, especially as an alternative if there is a shortage of waiters.

In combination with the QR self-order system, guest calls give the restaurant the opportunity to operate with a minimum of waiters, as the guest orders, collects and pays himself. With both systems, the restaurateur can increase or decrease their use, depending on the day’s server capacity. This means that the restaurant will be less vulnerable to sick leave and general staff shortages.

The only shortcoming of the combination of the two systems is that there still needs to be staff to pour soft drinks, beer, spirits and serve wine etc. However, this can go a long way in being remedied with supplementary solutions.

Self-service taps

It’s a bit in the name, but self-service taps give the guest the opportunity to dispense water, soda and beer themselves. This solution further facilitates the process for the waiters, and in combination with the QR self-order system and the guest call, you further minimize the vulnerability of missing waiters. However, there must still be an employee to pour spirits, serve wine and make coffee, but if this is not part of the restaurant’s range, it is actually possible to operate without the use of waiters if necessary.

The use of self-service faucets also has other advantages. Here it can e.g. it is mentioned that the solution results in increased sales due to the easily accessible taps, and a minimization of wastage, as the taps automatically pour just the right amount.

This solution is typically beneficial for those restaurants that want self-service taps as a permanent part of their restaurant. Alternatively, there are mobile bars with self-service taps that offer exactly the same, but here there is a better opportunity to use the system occasionally, as the bar can be rolled in and out of the restaurant as needed. Thereby, the mobile bar can e.g. used when there is an acute shortage of waiters.

Optimize today rather than tomorrow

Some optimization processes take longer than others – and sometimes you can reap the low-hanging fruit and make big optimizations with only a few changes.

Take time to assess what makes sense for your restaurant, and also think in new and creative ways. Several of these solutions can also be merged or customized to match your restaurant and style.

At OnlinePOS, we offer the solutions reviewed here, but we also offer several options that can be used in the event of a shortage of servers.