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Drive-thrus and QSRs

In a restaurant, the brand, the environment, and other aspects contribute to the type and quality of a customer’s journey. The most significant influence, though, is the interaction customers have with employees. Good customer engagement drives customers to return to your restaurant over your competition.

With the implementation of a well-rounded customer engagement checklist, QSRs will gain repeat customer visits, positive customer feedback and enhance their sales and profits.

While waiting for your order might be commonplace in a QSR establishment, a customer should not have to wait too long, particularly when fast-food restaurants are expected to produce the orders within a stipulated timeframe.
With this task, you can get instant notifications when your customers have waited for more than the pre-specified time, helping you reach out to them immediately. This way, you can always be proactive and transparent with the customer and communicate very clearly if you feel that there might be a delay in the order and give them the best possible estimate of the timeline for their orders.
1. Introduction
In the restaurant, waiting time is an essential determinant of customer satisfaction. Customer satisfaction is crucial because it is usually related to whether customers will revisit your restaurant or not.  Short waiting times give rise to high customer satisfaction. Whereas, when a restaurant lets customers wait long before getting the service, customers will be dissatisfied and not return to a restaurant.
2. Process
Standing in lines or even waiting to be tended to your orders are common occurrences in a food establishment. But on the other hand, the employees should be quick to respond to customers and try to accommodate their needs as promptly as possible. Failing to do so would entail delays in offering customer service, probably leaving the customer dissatisfied. To appease an unhappy guest is very difficult, and there is a chance that they may not revisit your establishment. As an employee, if you know ahead of time there will be a significant backlog, then offer a clear indication as to how much time the guest would have to wait.
3. Dos

    • a. Always be proactive and engaging with your customers and communicate with them effectively if you know there will be a delay.
    • b. If you sense that the customer is frustrated by waiting, simply acknowledge their presence and assure them.

    4. Don’ts

    • a. Do not react negatively if a customer becomes upset over the waiting time. Instead, remain calm so that the issue can be resolved effectively.
    • b. Do not forget to make your customers feel comfortable while waiting, such as offering them a seat.

Staff engagement begins from the time the customer enters the restaurant and only ends when the customer leaves. During that time, efficiently serving the customers is crucial. Make sure to interact with them on a timely basis and try your best to resolve any doubts, problems, or complaints.
1. Introduction
The restaurant management and employees are tasked with catering to the customers’ needs and providing them with an overall positive and satisfying experience. The brighter and more motivated you are towards your customers, the greater the chances of a more meaningful engagement with them. Therefore, the time taken for an employee to tend to the customers’ needs serves as an important metric for the future relationship between an establishment and the customer.
2. Process
Qualities such as impeccable communication skills and an affinity for interacting with customers at the right time will play a role in developing a healthy relationship with them.
As soon as the customer steps inside your QSR, make them feel welcome and comfortable and ensure that the food serving process is smooth and systematic. Avoid making them wait unnecessarily and be tactful enough to resolve any issues or grievances that might come about due to not being able to tend to them quickly. For example, suppose the restaurant employees are not engaging in activities that best serve the customers’ interests. In that case, the customer will see it as a lack of competence and professionalism, thereby discouraging the customer from revisiting your restaurant.
3. Dos

    • a. Even when there are many orders to tend to simultaneously, ensure that you devote an equal amount of time to every customer.
    • b. If there is a perceived wait time, employees should take note and engage in polite greetings, learn the purpose of the matter at hand, and possibly assist them accordingly.

    4. Don’ts

    • a. Do not engage in idle conversations or activities while the customer is waiting.
    • b. Do not react adversely if a customer is angry for being made to wait. Instead, resolve the issue by staying calm and offering an apology.

QSRs are known to deliver speedy service, and one of the primary signs of poor restaurant service is delays. If you feel that a particular dish takes time to prepare and that it will take a while before the food reaches the customer, let the customer know ahead of time. No matter how small or large it might be, every order should be treated as a priority.
1. Introduction
It’s never a good idea to make your patrons wait longer than they should for their meals. However, suppose your customers wait for an extended period for their food. In that case, it won’t matter just how good the food may have been because they will most likely be focused on the delayed service that they had to endure. Understandably, such an incident would make them very frustrated, and they may not want to revisit your establishment. As such, it becomes critical that you train your staff to serve the food promptly.
2. Process
Remember that it is tough to win back an already disappointed customer. An unhappy customer might even leave bad reviews on online platforms and discourage other people from eating at your restaurant, negatively impacting the establishments’ reputation and economic traction. As a result, take all possible steps not to disappoint your customers. Certain dishes require a great deal of preparation while others don’t, so if you know that there is a dish that will take a bit longer to cook, inform the customer ahead of time. Always be informative and transparent. Peak operational hours might mean that chefs and servers are expected to be active on their feet and fulfill many orders in a short period. If there is an error, acknowledge it and let them know that you are sorry, and assure them that such an incident will not happen again.
3. Dos

    • a. Ensure that you inform the customer in advance about how long it would take to prepare the dish.
    • b. Ensure that you have enough staff members to tend to customers’ volume, especially during peak operational time.

    4. Don’ts

    • a. Do not react adversely with a customer who is complaining about a delay in service. Instead, stay calm and patient, and then offer an apology.
    • b. Do not be disorganized and implement a functional system wherein you know which order goes to which customer.

Restaurant customer service is an integral part of running any restaurant, perhaps as important as food is. Customer expectations from a restaurant are not limited to the speed of service but extend to how the servers talk to them, address their complaints, and even serve the food. Therefore, restaurant employees should address the customers as soon as possible.
1. Introduction
Research has shown that a customer’s perception of an establishment may be determined by how long they waited, influencing customer satisfaction levels. Ideally, the customer should not stay for too long as the customer could perceive this as a lack of efficiency. Try to attend to your customers as soon they enter your establishments.
2. Process
In such scenarios wherein customers are made to wait, the person tending to them should give the customer a precise and conservative estimation of how much time they would be requested to wait. By doing so, you are reducing the likelihood of the anxiety and frustration of the situation’s uncertainty could cause. If you have promised output within a specific timeframe, try your best to deliver as the customers’ expectations have already been put into motion. To backtrack from that commitment would significantly impact the image of the establishment.
3. Dos

    • a. Ensure that you are well-staffed and that all the restaurant functions are running smoothly and systematically so that there won’t be any delays.
    • b. Ensure that employees are appropriately trained as that will contribute to the efficiency of the services provided to the customer.

    4. Don’ts

    • a. Don’t make the customer wait unnecessarily, especially if they ask a simple question or make a minor request.
    • b. Do not react adversely if a client gets frustrated for having made them wait. Instead, be calm and patient and try your best to resolve any issue that they have raised.

Managing queues allows for better organization and eliminates the chances of chaos and confusion. Queue length detection serves as an important metric for employees to keep a close eye on the line’s status. This is especially important in a QSR establishment. For example, there is typically a separate line for customers to place their orders, while the other line is for customers to collect their orders once the orders are prepared and ready to go. Such a system helps the employees see who comes next in line, when they expect to be served, and their needs. In this manner, customer interaction is more efficient and effective.
1. Introduction
During peak service hours, waiting in line at a restaurant seems inevitable and understandable as chefs and servers alike have to cater to many orders. However, a patron should never be made to wait longer than they should. Hence, QSRs need to make serious efforts to reduce the long lines by alleviating the waiting time.
2. Process
There are many aspects to consider when it comes to managing the length of a queue. Since several operations are at play, from the customers’ arrival time to kitchen preparation time and foodservice, everything will need a proper estimation and time limit. In addition, certain dishes require a great deal of preparation while others don’t, so if you know that there is a dish that will take a bit longer to cook, then inform the patron ahead of time. Finally, always ensure that you are informative and transparent. No matter how good the meal may have been, the customer is likely to remember the lengthy waiting period instead of the food quality and might even leave bad reviews on online platforms and discourage other people from dining at your restaurant. As such, it might leave a negative effect on the establishments’ reputation and economic traction.
3. Dos

    • a. Ensure that you inform the customer in advance about how long it would take to prepare the dish.
    • b. Ensure that you have enough staff members to tend to the volume of customers, especially if it is during peak operational time.

    4. Don’ts

    • a. Do not react adversely with a customer who is complaining about a delay in service. Instead, stay calm and patient, and then offer an apology.
    • b. Do not be disorganized and implement a functional system wherein you know which plates go to which diner.