Now months into the unprecedented Covid-19 Pandemic, it’s not surprising that the hospitality industry is inundated with new solutions to support the operational challenges of social distancing.

But too much choice is confusing, making the selection process difficult and time-consuming, even for the technically competent businesses.

Technical innovations are there to help the business thrive, but the wrong choice could deliver more expensive problems than solutions.

Of course, the functional fit will be important to meet the many challenges, such as: mobile and table ordering, track and trace, delivery using multiple channels. All of these will ensure your business can thrive post lockdown.

But functionality isn’t the only consideration, there are apps appearing all the time to handle these challenges, so what else should be considered?

Is the solution designed for hospitality?

With the emergence of so many solutions in such a short space of time, it is worth investigating the origins of the software. Where solutions have been adapted to suit new markets, there could be gaps in knowledge of market requirements and integration needs, which could become expensive over time due to support issues and failures.

Is the solution fully integrated?

You might be somewhat surprised to see such a surge in apps over a short period of time. This is explainable because the app is remote, it handles one operational issue so unlikely to be tested with other operational necessity’s such as your POS system.

Add-on apps are easier to develop which is why they emerge so quickly. They are developed for a very specific need and so are functionally rich, often referred to as ‘best of breed’ solutions.

Whilst ‘best of breed’ may deliver rich functionality, it will still need to be integrated to your POS solutions which can cause potential time delay, mapping issues and additional cost.

Systems which are not properly integrated can also cause significant operational problems, re-keying information often results in errors and wasted time trying to identify problems.

How will the solution be supported?

In some cases, your add-on app supplier will claim to have already seamlessly integrated with specific solutions, but this could still cause a support issue.

Systems developed independently of each other can be a support nightmare. With multiple providers, it becomes difficult to know where to go for support. Who has responsibility for the systems working as a whole solution, not only now but in the future as new functionality and features are developed? What happens when the operating system is upgraded but not all the solutions are compatible? What happens when one party changes their app and it no longer communicates with the POS?

Are costs savings real or achievable?

Seeking individual solutions to separately handle operational challenges can result in multiple support contracts and significant monthly fees, limiting your ability to operate financially with reduced covers imposed by social distancing.

With multiple contracts and the challenges of integration, savings made at purchase could be lost over time.

What to look out for

Choosing systems that will work together and come from an established technology company, will ensure minimal disruption.

Clearly a long-established company with extensive hospitality expertise will be better equipped to address the guidelines and provide the support for the whole system. Technology companies such as TISSL, have addressed all the new operational requirements as additional modules to their HORIZON POS system. This not only reduces cost but also ensures a high level of support all in one place because things have been designed to work together.

Keep the infrastructure simple, ensure everything is fully integrated and all works on the same platform. Deploying all functional requirements from one supplier if possible, let the supplier take responsibility for the technology enabling you to keep your staff and customers safe while still providing that culinary experience with seamless service.

TISSL HORIZON EPOS has been developed from the ground up, ensuring simpler on-going development without the constraints of most older legacy systems. There is no glue holding it together, it all works together on one platform

TISSL have always developed their platform using the latest technology so we’re able to react quickly to the COVID requirements set out by the government.

Mobile and table ordering is provided with an integrated module rather than a separate app. TISSL’s Consumer Ordering Platform (COP) meets all the government guidelines to re-open safely with social distancing. Customers can link easily to your POS, viewing menus and modifiers, then place and pay for their order all using their own smartphones and from anywhere in the restaurant.

There is even a track and trace system so you can provide the NHS with the required information should there be any problems with a visitor to your premises contracting COVID-19.

To learn more about how HORIZON can provide your technology solution post-lockdown, check out the resources on our website or contact one of our friendly team members today by emailing sales@tissl.co.uk or calling 01908 525800.

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