How iPad POS Systems are Taking Over the Restaurant Industry
In the last few years, there has been a steady rise in iPad sales. Part of this is due to the increasing popularity of touchscreen devices to do everything from reading books and playing games to downloading your favorite recipes. Another reason for the increase in sales is the sudden switch from the clunky old point of sale (POS) systems to the sleeker, more affordable iPad-based POS systems that are starting to find their way into businesses across the country. The iPads are changing how businesses conduct transactions and receive customer feedback, explains Dan Rowinski. From small mom and pop stores to large multi-national chain restaurants, these compact, easy to use systems are becoming the new face for keeping stores and restaurants on top of their operations.
Restaurant owners are finding that they can run a better business with the iPad restaurant POS system. Instead of large, expensive and clunky computer systems, a sleek tablet on the counter is appealing and affordable, explains Duessa Holscher writer for the site Fast Casual. Restaurant servers are now relying on the iPad POS system§ for so much more than surfing the Internet, connecting with friends on Facebook, and playing games. Now they are using them to expedite their daily functions. With the help of the iPad POS systems, restaurant servers are becoming more efficient at their jobs and customers, as well as restaurant owners are sitting up and taking notice.
For years, restaurants have relied on messy dry erase seating charts as a way to keep track of the servers’ stations. If a restaurant was busy enough, they would have to rely on a clipboard loaded with paper to keep track of waitlisted guests. With the iPad POS systems, the hostess can streamline the process and organize the customer waitlist to have it working like a well-oiled machine. Unlike the old POS systems, the iPad systems are capable of functioning with different software including OpenTable. With OpenTable, restaurants have the capability to automatically confirm two reservations each second. Nearly 26,000 restaurants use OpenTable to manage seating.
With the iPad restaurant POS systems, ordering has been brought into the 21st century. Servers are able to take orders at the table and directly input them into the iPad, sending them directly into the kitchen staff. This cuts down considerably on employee downtime while improving efficiency and reducing errors. There is no longer a reason for items to be missed when being transferred from a written pad to the computer. Everything is seamlessly taken care of right at the customer’s table.
The collection of payments has been completely revolutionized with the new POS systems. Servers are able to create a custom ticket once the order is recorded on the iPad, and the customer can pay their bill from anywhere in the restaurant with their signature being accepted directly on the screen. If items, like more drinks or desserts need to be added to the ticket, they can with ease and complete accuracy, without having to re-enter any information into the system. Once the customer’s payment is processed, they can choose to have their receipt printed out wirelessly right at the table, or sent to their email. No longer do they have to wait for their server to return with a copy of their receipt.
It can cost a restaurant a considerable amount of money to have to reprint their menus. If they have to change their prices or are updating the menu items, they can end up spending a small fortune on reprints. With the new POS systems, restaurant owners are finding it much cheaper and more efficient to display their menus virtually on the tableside so that customers can browse through the choices with the touchscreen. A virtual menu is a must for any restaurant that regularly rotates through specials.
A great feature of the iPad-based POS systems is the ability to feature games for the younger restaurant patrons. Many restaurants have added this feature to the tableside systems so that their younger patrons can keep themselves entertained while they wait for their meals to arrive. This feature can be set up so that the games are free of charge or cost a small fee for unlimited use during the visit. Not only does this keep children occupied, but it also cuts down on the expense of having children’s menus and crayons having to be constantly ordered.
The new iPad-based restaurant POS systems are bringing the restaurant industry into the 21st century. A basic POS system is commonly offered in restaurant packages, or you can create a custom package to better serve your restaurant. With an easier way to serve their customers, restaurants can see an increase in their overall efficiency and watch their profits increase as well.