Restaurants have long grappled with various serving options for customers not wanting to dine in with them. Takeout has been a longtime go-to option for customers looking to enjoy restaurant food without the need to sit in a dining room. But the surge in using third-party restaurant delivery services, like Grubhub, has food establishments scrambling to build better relationships with such companies.
Building these relationships is easier than you may think. There are a few simple rules that can help you to better support multiple delivery channels, as well as to streamline your internal processes to further support delivery options. These will not only help you to achieve a highly efficient order-to-delivery process, but they can also help you expand your takeout and curbside ordering options.
4 Rules for Adding Third-Party Restaurant Delivery Services
Rule #1: Ensure the Free Flow of Information
All of the moving pieces within your restaurant are difficult enough to manage even before you consider sending information to external parties. The first and most important area you must address is ensuring that all of the information you obtain can be gathered, formatted in a way that is compatible with all of your systems, and sent to where it needs to go without any delays or risks of it going missing or becoming corrupted.
POS technology that is cloud-based and that supports mobile functionality is an ideal scenario for supporting third-party delivery options. All order and sales information is obtained and processed in the same way regardless of its incoming channel. The data consistency is then easily maintained as the order moves to the kitchen for filling. Staff will be alerted to the timing of order completion, allowing them to quickly provide accurate updates to most any third-party delivery service.
Rule #2: Improve the Accuracy of Order Management
The key goal of filling orders is to ensure that every order retains perfect accuracy from start to finish. This means that no aspect of the order can inadvertently be changed or go missing, from the moment an order is submitted, on through to the kitchen, and finally onto the customer’s plate. Accomplishing this will be of especially high importance when it comes to takeaway orders, since the customer will be miles away when order mistakes are first noticed.
Leveraging the capabilities of the POS solution outlined in rule number one is instrumental in achieving a high degree of accuracy on your orders. Whether orders are submitted via an online menu or over the phone, the consistent look and feel of your menu across all of your ordering mediums eliminate out-of-band ordering requests or mistakes due to illegible handwritten scrawls on a pad. These on their own will be sufficient to greatly improve the accuracy of your ordering process.
Rule #3: Establish Relationships and Prepare a Delivery Strategy
Aligning your internal processes to support using third-party delivery services is only half of the battle. Establishing a relationship with a delivery service in your area must be accomplished before you put your strategy in motion to ensure that your processes are set up to work with the requirements communicated by your delivery partners. This can mean anything from notification and communication processes to the finer details of the containers that you should be using.
With your delivery partner’s requirements in hand, you can turn your attention to establishing the additional pieces of your delivery strategy, such as examining your menu to determine if a separate, delivery-only menu is needed. This is quite common, especially considering that some foods may get soggy or lose their luster if transported or not immediately served. Looking into all of these nuances, including reserved parking spaces just for your delivery partners, must be done to ensure success.
Rule #4: Prepare Your Staff to Coordinate With and Support Your Delivery Partners
Although we mention staff training last in our list of rules, this is not due to its lack of importance. As a best practice, staff should only be trained on completed processes that have ample support documents to minimize mistakes or misunderstandings. Only after you have established all of the elements of the three rules above should staff be trained on the third-party delivery processes as well as the supporting POS technology that will be in place.
Most delivery service providers will give you their guidelines broken down into easy-to-understand and implement steps simplifying this portion of the training. Technology training can be a little more time-consuming and require a more in-depth look into processes. This is why, as a part of your POS technology selection process, you should consider the support and training provided by your POS vendor as an important extension of the hardware and software you have chosen.
Expand Your Brand with Enhanced Delivery Services
Adding a third-party restaurant delivery service to your offerings can give your reputation and brand reach a boost. In addition to your online presence, most food delivery services will present their users with the option to view and order from your menu using their app.
Imagine having the power and reputation of popular delivery apps in your corner to spark additional interest in your restaurant. Third-party services can offer benefits and an ROI that goes beyond any results you could imagine.Establishing a partnership with talech for your restaurant technology and third-party restaurant delivery services needs is just the start of jumpstarting your restaurant. The proper use of third-party delivery services will provide an instant and drastic expansion to the reach of your brand, but only if you have the right delivery tools and strategy in place to support this vision.
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