How Tech Innovation is Helping QSR Grow
How Tech Innovation is Helping QSR Grow

QSR or Quick Service Restaurants are the fine dining options for the Gen Z—who are always on the move – be it with career or food, thus creating a multi-million-dollar business opportunity. According to credit rating agency ICRA, the industry is expected to grow by 20-25% in FY2024 in India, on account of steady demand uptick and increasing penetration driven by a rapid expansion of stores. India currently has 428 functioning QSR brands, and in the last two years, this segment has attracted investments worth $1.3 billion through 64 deals. As QSR the industry charts out its growth path, technology is slated to create a 360-degree impact on the way this industry operates.

Traditionally built on a strong technology foothold, the QSR industry is intensive users of tech-powered production techniques, information and communication resources, smart logistics, marketing avenues, and sound e-commerce technologies. Separately to manage the backend integration of accounts and frontend vendors, technology is the only way that offers affordable solutions to the QSR outlets.

Where is QSR using the Tech

The tech-savvy users have created a demand for the most recent technologies to be adapted for raising footfalls, creating campaigns, and raising the firm’s profitability. Today tech-equipped fast-food facilities likes enhanced services, tech-driven food ordering, and traceable food delivery. 

QSR owners are looking for new and innovative ways to deal with the waste product generated out of the outlets to managing the supply chain. Speed, convenience, and value are the three points that are driving the tech adaptation and demand for more. 
Moreover, Generation Z and Millennials –both groups are now craving and demanding technology-centric dining experiences--both groups expect technology to be a part of their dining experience, even if it is something as basic as free wi-fi. The basic function of technology in QSR is to improve the customer experience along with increasing operational efficiency. Thus, the technologies being pursued could be considered more evolutionary rather than revolutionary.

Emerging Usages

Voice Ordering- in line with Amazon Echo and Google Home is the next big thing to impact QSR segment. Robotics like Chatbot Sally, the Salad Robot are expected to be the future whereas Artificial Intelligence rightly deployed, is an anticipated tool that will help businesses predict footfalls and demand –thus leading to efficient business management. AI business intelligence tools forecast industry shifts and help make proactive changes to the company’s marketing, merchandising, and business strategies. This impacts supply chain planning, as well as pricing and promotional planning.

Similarly, kiosk is a concept that has been adapted by QSRs, who are now investing in improving the customer experience along with streamlining their employee task. As per the latest research conducted on the QSR diner, 47 per cent of them preferred to opt for a self-service technology such as a kiosk for customising their orders. The kiosk is ultimately the new-age technology that can help firms manage their workforce by reassigning employees to more value-added tasks like ensuring happy customers and improving their experience.

Likewise, at the backend digital food safety measures are helping avoid food safety disasters. Digital tools help restaurant owners serve fresh food with quick temperature probes, automated temperature monitoring, and food and date labelling. Digital food safety helps restaurants be compliant. Technology in food packaging has revolutionized the shelf-life of food industry including QSRs.
The deployment of chatbots helps the QSRs to manage the payment received from various channels for tax and receivable’s purposes. As payments are received through multiple channels like banks, cheques, Paytm, Bhim Pay, Phone Pay, Cred, and many others --- it needs dedicated software to organize and account for the money

Summing Up

As QSRs are fast-moving eateries, it is pertinent that they have to be efficient in order to survive. Technology at all levels—chatbots for accounting to AI for business predictions to food safety measures all are functions of Smart Tech in today’s world—not to mention tech-enabled quality maintenance and inventory management. Infrastructural investments like Smart supply chains and automated sensor-driven food displays will become the future of every food industry.

Choice and deployment of ‘Competent Technology’ is going to be the next phase of the challenge with too many tech choices for the business owners for distribution, product line maintenance, and customer experience. As the backend integration of payments and receivables continues through smart bots, it will leave a fairly good time for business owners to focus on customer experience and comfort, thus ensuring business expansion.

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