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The restaurant industry is rich in its diversity, covering fine and casual dining, quick-service and fast food, cafes, bars, delis, gastro pubs, food halls, catering services – the list goes on and on.

All of these different types of food operations have their unique ways of working and offer unique experiences to their clientele. They also have plenty in common, including their reliance on POS systems to serve up more than just great food.

POS has evolved into something more than just a means of processing transactions. Across the restaurant industry, POS technology has become an essential piece of the service jigsaw, providing a digital framework for food operators of all types to modernise.

Key to that is how flexible modern POS solutions are. As well as the familiar till and checkout terminals, POS now covers a broad range of self-service, mobile and digital display options, each offering different benefits to different types of businesses.

Below, we’ve picked out four examples and how they are being used in the restaurant trade.

Kitchen management systems

Where: All food and drink establishments

Kitchen management systems have become ubiquitous across the food service industry. Wherever you have a kitchen, wherever you have a front-of-house team taking orders and serving customers, a kitchen management system provides a digital link between the two.

The concept is simple. However orders are taken (and we will explore some different POS options for this below), a kitchen management system relays them directly to the kitchen where they are displayed on a big screen. Software is used to schedule and prioritise meal preparation. The key benefits are increased accuracy, minimising miscommunication between customer-facing staff and the kitchen, and improved speed and efficiency.

Ordering kiosks

Where: Quick-service restaurants (QSR), food courts, casual dining

If you’ve been to a large fast-food chain any time in the last five-plus years, you’ve no doubt used a digital kiosk to place your order. These large touchscreen consoles have revolutionised efficiency in the QSR sector. By separating ordering from food service, they reduce queues and increase throughout, benefiting customers with a better experience and the business with an uplift in sales.

Even better, ordering consoles have been linked to increased average order value (AOV), partly as a result of smart data-powered targeting for cross- and up-sell recommendations, partly because people feel at leisure to take their time and order exactly what they want.

It’s no wonder, then, that ordering kiosks are spreading beyond their QSR stronghold. In food courts, for example, they have the huge benefit of allowing customers to order from any concession from a single point.

Mobile POS

Where: Any food operator offering table service – dine-in restaurants, gastro pubs, cafe bars etc

Mobile POS is POS in tablet form. It’s an innovation tailor-made for table service in any type of hospitality setting. The use of mobile POS in dine-in restaurants also underlines how POS has become more than a means of taking payments. You can process payments at the table with a wi-fi card reader. What mobile POS brings is the ability to tap an order straight into the kitchen management system (that again), and further streamline the whole process.

Beyond dine-in settings, mobile POS is also a great option for food vans, pop-up outlets and catering services, as it offers an easy means of taking full POS capabilities with you, wherever you happen to go.

Contact the Oxhoo team to talk about your requirements and let our experts help you choose the perfect POS solution.