Are Waiters Necessary in Future Restaurants?

Posted on: May 5, 2021 by RMS Hospitality

Going out to eat at a sit-down restaurant is about so much more than eating. It’s often a social and cultural endeavor. The whole experience matters, from the establishment selected to the server responsible for taking orders and delivering food. When one part of the experience does not meet expectations, it can put a damper on the entire outing. The waiter is often the link that connects the diner to each part of their experience so that individual can make or break the evening. Servers are also a key source of inefficiency for an establishment, though they’re frequently seen as necessary. Your clients may want to explore whether waiters will continue to be needed in future restaurants. You may want to share this information with them as you discuss a restaurant insurance program.

Server Inefficiencies

The personal touch that waiters provide in a dining experience is also the source of some major inefficiencies. Once a group sits down at their table, they spend a few minutes or more going over the menu, and then they may have to wait for the server to:

  1. Greet them and tell them the specials
  2. Return to take their orders
  3. Write down their orders
  4. Enter their orders into the point-of-service system
  5. Deliver the food to the table
  6. Check on their table so they can order another drink or a condiment
  7. Drop their bill
  8. Collect their payment, process it, and return the change.

Reading through the list, you can clearly see how much time may be spent waiting for servers to do some component of their job. These delays can be a source of frustration for diners — even when they enjoy their interactions with their server — and lost income for restaurant owners.

Artificial Intelligence in Restaurants

Businesses looking to improve efficiency and diner experience turn to technology and artificial intelligence for answers. In some places, waiters now carry tablets, allowing them to punch in orders right at the table. The orders are then sent directly to the kitchen. This practice immediately takes one step of the waiting game out of the picture, so customers get their orders faster and waiters serve their guests more efficiently.

Restaurants can utilize artificial intelligence and technology in several ways throughout their operations, but a few key aspects can improve diner experiences. Diners can use phone apps for ordering food without the server. Kiosks can incorporate opt-in facial recognition so that diners can quickly order and pay for their meals. With a fully self-serve option, the diner would never have to interact with a waiter.

These technologies would likely not work for every establishment, but they could be incorporated to some degree at most. So, will waiters be replaced in the future? Probably not entirely, but they may be able to do their jobs more efficiently, and businesses might not need as many of them.

About RMS Hospitality Group

At RMS Hospitality Group, our expertly crafted policies are written specifically for the hospitality industry. We offer custom tailored solutions to meet any venue’s specific needs. For more information, contact our knowledgeable experts today at (888) 359-8390.

Posted in: Restaurant Insurance

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