We all make mistakes…it’s a part of being human. And like many of our mistakes, they can be undone or easily corrected without hardship. But when it comes to technology and your growing enterprise, one mistake — however well-intended — can have long-term implications as it relates to costs, effort, time, growth and, most importantly, your reputation. Equating to a sports analogy, the mistake of using your first-round draft choice on a “safe” player from a big school but ignoring the superstar in the making because the player came from a smaller university (think Walter Payton or Jerry Rice) can have lasting repercussions.
Key differentiators outshine the competition in myriad ways:
The technology provider is a vendor rather than a true partner
While the “big-dog” companies are well-known and look good on paper, are they really a great match for your enterprise? Do they provide 24x7x365 live, domestic support during and after implementation? Are they willing and able to perform custom development from an in-house, domestic team of technology experts? Do they perform menu management services? Do they provide live, on-site training? Are they responsive, transparent and easy to work with? After all, a POS provider may have great products and credentials, but if they aren’t willing to provide exemplary services and support on a holistic basis, they are not a true partner.
The solutions aren’t integrated (properly)
No comprehensive solution does everything on its own. That’s why the integration process is vital to the ongoing (and sustained) success of your entire enterprise. Simply put, the solutions you need must work together cohesively. But all APIs are not created equal. While other providers are quick to tout their lengthy list of integrations, the integration process is akin to the famous E.T. movie poster in which E.T. and Elliott’s fingers touch — but never intersect. In a true integration, all digits must intersect — not only for strength, but also for added value. Assembling a tech Frankenstein from disconnected vendors may give you more data, but you’ll have less insight, as the ability to see this holistic data — joined together and parsed in meaningful ways — will be greatly diminished. By having an aligned system, you’ll maximize successes, minimize frustrations and ensure your ability to make real-time decisions about the true health of your operations.
The tech tools are complex
It’s easy to fall for the bells and whistles of a new tech solution, but one of your top concerns should be whether it’s user friendly (powerful, yes… but easy to learn, use and manage). If the solution is overly complicated, your staff won’t use (or like) it. Avoid solutions that are complex or have a steep learning curve. When you focus on intuitive, simple-to-use solutions, your daily operations will be simplified, your staff will save time and effort and your guests will be empowered with resources that will enable them to seamlessly (and contactlessly) order more of your great food and beverages.
Security is an afterthought
While strict adherence to PCI DSS, the data security standards enacted by the Payment Card Industry, helps protect card data, non-card data cybercrime (exploits such as ransomware, viruses, malware, phishing, etc.) can also wreak costly havoc on your enterprise. Determine if (and how) a tech solution will increase your attack surface — and find out what security measures your POS provider takes. Best practice: Select a provider that is PCI DSS compliant as a company, utilizes in-house PCI QIR certified installers and employs an in-house team of certified security experts who perform security essentials, including monitoring, testing and issue remediation.
You didn’t consider the ROI
The right tech solutions can drive revenue growth, cut costs, attract new customers, ensure guest loyalty, increase productivity and help elevate your most important asset: your valued brand. While tech solutions require an initial investment, the right option — especially those that are agile, innovative and highly scalable — will pay for itself over time.