Food Service

What are the IT Needs of a New Restaurant?

January 4, 2017

Jennifer Powell

CMO of Installation & Service Technologies (IST)

When opening a new restaurant, the start-up checklist can seem endless. From hiring and training staff members, to designing the space and ensuring all technology components work seamlessly, it can be easy to miss something.

In order to be successful today, every restaurant must leverage technology – there’s just no getting around it. From point of sale (POS) systems to digital menus, you must hire a trusted IT provider that can ensure all technology aspects are streamlined.

According to the National Restaurant Association, the restaurant industry makes an average of $782.7 billion in sales each year. Additionally, there are more than 1 million restaurant locations in the U.S., and a projected 1.7 million jobs will be created with the opening of new restaurants by the year 2026.

We can’t ignore the exponential growth the restaurant industry is experiencing, and it doesn’t look to be slowing down any time soon. Therefore, restaurant owners must understand how leveraging technology can play a vital role in staying ahead of the competition and remaining successful. Consider our recommendations below when opening a new location.

  1. Plan Ahead
    During the design and layout phase, brainstorm all technology components desired to ensure each is included in the construction. As an example, here’s what we typically offer our clients:
  • Cabling
  • Computer and network needs
  • Database collection from customers
  • Digital menus
  • Digital promotional screens
  • Intercom systems
  • Linked network of cash registers
  • Music systems
  • Physical and cyber security system
  • POS systems
  • Receipt printers
  • Surveillance cameras
  • Wi-Fi access
  1. Find a Partner
    Take that list and talk with vendors to ensure they can meet all, or the majority of, your needs. Finding a provider who can streamline the process by providing all technology components is crucial. Speaking for Skinny IT, we act as a team member working with our clients to ensure mutual success. We strive to be a true partner to their business that will adapt as the restaurant grows and evolves over the years.
  1. Conduct Ongoing Maintenance
    If an IT issue arises, a trusted partner should be accessible at a moment’s notice to ensure the business does not suffer and lose money in the interim. In addition, your provider should check in every few months to confirm all technology components are up-to-date and working properly. This will allow the provider to fix any issues ahead of time before a problem arises that could negatively affect the restaurant.

At Skinny IT, we work closely with SICOM Systems, Inc., a digital signage software company that specializes in the quick-service restaurant industry and works for clients like Popeye’s, Hardees, Carl’s Jr. and Burger King. Before utilizing Skinny IT, SICOM used several different providers to deliver various technology solutions. Since we stepped in, we have streamlined the process and provided all IT solutions and services for its clients. Through our partnership with SICOM, we have installed digital menus and provided additional IT services to more than 150 fast service restaurants throughout the U.S. and Canada.

We specialize in transforming restaurants with IT solutions tailored to the client’s specific needs. Whatever they need, we’ll make it happen – and for an affordable price. Our goal is to ensure our customers are profitable, successful and continue to grow their restaurant businesses.

If you are opening a new restaurant and looking for an IT provider, we’d love to chat.

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