Touch Screens Speed Customers Through The Order Line At A Taco Bell Franchise
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A Taco Bell franchise in downtown Philadelphia uses touch screen technology that lets customers place orders on their own with the touch of a finger. As a result, the restaurant has eliminated long lines, even during the busy lunch-hour rush. Employees who used to take orders at a traditional cash register are now redeployed in the food-preparation area, which has doubled in size. "The touch screens have transformed the way we serve our customers," says Gary Griscom, a supervisor with A-Plus Food Corporation, the Taco Bell franchisee that operates the facility. "The touch screens were accepted by both our customers and employees. Approximately 99% of our business is now handled via the touch screens."
Touch Screen Ordering System Is Interactive With Customer
Customers enter orders through a touch screen monitor mounted atop a counter in the restaurant. The system is equipped with speakers so the touch screen can "talk" to the customers. For instance, once a customer selects a meal, the system advises, "Press OK to enter your order or press GO BACK to change your order." As an order is entered, it appears instantly on a display monitor in the kitchen where employees assemble the meal.
"Initially, everyone wants to try using the touch screen because it's a novelty," says Griscom. "After that first time, they just appreciate the efficiency. They walk up, punch in their order in seconds and a moment later, they're sitting down eating or they're on their way with a bagged meal in hand."
SoftSense & Elo TouchSystems Provide The Technology Behind The Solution
The Taco Bell touch screen systems were installed by SoftSense (Atlanta, GA), a company that specializes in information systems for restaurant and retail operations. Part of SoftSense's OrderPoint product line, the systems comprise a family of customer-activated terminals (CATs). All of SoftSense's OrderPoint terminals incorporate EloTouchSystems.
"The long-term dependability of the touch screens is critical," says Griscom. "Our customers expect fast service every time, without fail." While customers benefit by getting faster service via the touch screens, Taco Bell employees benefit by streamlining their operations and providing faster service. For instance, kitchen workers no longer have to decipher handwritten orders; they eliminate confusion and delays by referring solely to the monitor installed in the kitchen.
In the past, employees working the counter had to enter each meal item into a keypad to get a total. Now, the touch screens print out an order number for each customer. Once a customer is ready to pay, the order number is entered at the cash register and the total appears instantly.