Covid changes in hospitality – what’s here to stay

Covid has brought lots of changes to the hospitality industry: social distancing, plastic walls between guests, hand sanitisers on every table, higher focus on take out & delivery, QR code menus, etc.

Certain things will hopefully soon be a distant memory, but other things are here to stay.

Let’s take a closer look at where the journey is going…

QR codes
Because of the pandemic everyone knows how to scan a QR code. Many solutions used in restaurants aren’t the best, though, and make operations more complicated and less personal.

That doesn’t mean they will fully disappear once the measures drop. According to the New York Times QR codes in restaurants are here to stay.

We are seeing an evolution from ordering and paying via QR code to just paying via QR code. Big brands like Wagamama are already doing this. And it makes sense, it gives staff and customers the best of both worlds. A human interaction at the beginning of a meal and a quick and easy way to pay and leave tips at the end of it.

Convenience is king
The pandemic shifted our perception of convenience, even a 15 minute commute is now a sacrifice many are unwilling to make. Spending so much time at home also led food deliveries to boom like crazy!

For the hospitality industry, this is a big problem.

These third-party delivery apps take substantial fees, in a space where margins are thin already. It’s crucial for restaurants to get people back into their venues. But how?

Restaurants need to create a more streamlined in-person experience. For example: reduce the wait times. Waiting for food is annoying, but even worse is the wait to pay the bill at the end. It takes up to 15 minutes — if there’s some bill splitting involved potentially even more.

It’s one of the things that people don’t put up with anymore and simply turn to their apps instead.

Staff shortages
While consumers grow more impatient the restaurants struggle with overworked staff due to shortages. A hard position to be in that works like a vicious circle.

The only way to get out of it: restaurants need to provide more with less. Meaning the processes need to be optimised. Efficiency in every step and no more wasted time is key and the only way to restore stability.

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