With modern technology, we have the world at our fingertips. We have immediate access to everything we could ever want or need. Our food is no exception. In recent years, there has been a major increase in the popularity of third party food delivery services like Grubhub, Uber Eats and DoorDash. These sites allow customers to order their food in the comfort of their home and have it delivered quickly; without putting in the actual effort of going to the restaurant to get it. Seems simple right...
...There is just one problem...
Most restaurants aren’t designed for optimized food pick-up. This can cause stress on your staff, cost you profits and affect your business. There is a simple solution: pickup perfecting supplies and processes. Having a carefully designed process to optimize meal pickup can save you a lot of headaches down the road. So, without further delay here are 4 ways to optimize your pick up process:
4 Ways to Improve Your Third Party Pickup Process
1. Segregate Pickup from the Regular Service Line
Restaurants are generally built to be visited in-person; not for food delivery services. This can cause chaos and clutter in waiting areas due to the mix of delivery drivers looking for orders, and restaurant patrons looking for a table. Instead, a simple shelving unit in a separate location can help avert the delivery traffic. By organizing a shelving pick-up delivery process, drivers are out faster and they can obtain their food without bothering your in-house customers. This will make order pick up quicker and easier on drivers, while keeping your in-house customers a main priority.
2. Make Order Pickup Easy for the Customer
It can be challenging to keep track of online pick up and third-party pick up orders. If you don’t have a proper system in place, they can pile up, get mixed together, and cause complete chaos. However, with shelving units orders can be organized and separated as they are made. This can help reduce order mix ups and make it easier to find orders and get them to customers in a quick and timely fashion.A great accessory to add to your shelving unit is labels; these tiny life- savers are easy to place, change, and can make avoiding order mishap easier.Labels can be used to mark the name of the person who requested the order, and can be changed with a simple dry- erase marker, or a small piece of paper. This makes them efficient and easy to use. Your customers will thank you!
3. Help Your Staff Keep Customer Orders Organized
It is difficult keeping up with today’s “all food is fast food” mentality. Without proper organization, orders can sit and become cold, get lost, or get mixed in with others. This causes frustration in your kitchen because your staff is forced to make repeat orders rather than clearing the board, and costs you money in added ingredients. By putting out a simple shelving unit you can help avoid these types of mishaps and make the workday for both you and your staff less stressful, while helping to minimize remakes and save you money on supplies.
Another way to ensure maximum organization would be adding accessories to your shelving unit. First, dividers are a great tool to ensure that all the orders are completely separated and ready to grab, this makes keeping the shelf organized an easier task.Ledges are a great tool to help make sure that orders are well secured on the shelf. Adding a simple 1" ledge around the unit can help make sure that no packages are sliding around the shelf , or possibly off the shelf.
4. Keep Food Hot and Ready to Serve
With third- party food delivery services there are a few variables to work with, unlike in house drivers the people delivering food are not leaving immediately from the restaurant.This means, it may take them some time to find you, and there is no exact time you can expect them . Do not be alarmed ! There are many solutions available to help keep food ready, and at the proper quality level.
Heat Lamps- Heat lamps are a great tool that can be mounted in a variety of ways to fit your needs; they are a great solution to keep food warm over a short period of time. However, be warned they do emit dry heat so if left on a product too long they can cause it to dry out.
Heated shelves- Heated shelves are another option to keep orders safe and tasty. Heated shelves are basically a portable plug- in a stove top, they come in a variety of sizes and shapes and can be easily worked into your kitchen area. It is important to keep in mind that they solely heat from the bottom, so, make sure that you also include a lamp to heat the food on top, or that you remember to stir or flip the dish if it is on the shelf for a while.
Warming Cabinets - Warming cabinets come in a variety of shapes and sizes; they are a great investment if your food tends to sit for a while. With different ways of heating, and changing humidity settings, heated cabinets are great at maintaining food quality. Adding humidity keeps meats juicy and vegetables steamy and fresh, while a lower controlled setting is great for keeping breads nice and warm without making them soggy.
Catering Boxes- Catering boxes are another option to consider when choosing the perfect heat- maintaining element for your operation. Catering boxes are pretty simple, they are highly insulated boxes that trap heat in to keep food hot and ready to eat. These are a great solution because they don't need any outside electricity, they are easy to care for, and can keep food at a safe temperature for multiple hours. However, we did discover they are not totally truck- proof ( you might loose some labels), so if you for some reason feel like ramming them with a truck; we would advise against it.
Want to see the catering box that was able to withstand this hit ? Click the image to learn more:
Third-party food delivery is a booming business and a great opportunity for any food service operation. Today third-party food delivery is a $13 billion dollar industry, and is expected to increase in size exponentially; reaching $360 billion dollars in 2020.Proper supplies can help greatly improve you order pick- up processes, and help you to leave your mark in this booming new industry.
Contact a Metro Representative to find the perfect efficiency- boosting supplies for your facility