Saturday, October 13, 2007

Blog 3: Foodservice: Building the Wireless Backbone


Over the past few years wireless technology hardware prices have dropped roughly 50 percent. The technology has also gotten a lot better in that same time. There are four elements that make up a good high speed wireless internet access connection. They are:
1) wide area network (WAN) from each location to the Internet or corporate intranet
2) wireless access inside a facility (WLAN)
3) network management and support
4) mobile devices.

With these four main elements, restaurateurs can take make their establishments wireless and free up time, space and money. Wireless may be used by some establishments simply because they can use nothing else.
Another benefit of wireless technology is that even during wireless downtime, credit card numbers may be held in a queue in the systems cache and later be charged when the internet if functioning again.
In one restaurant in Brazil, the Nakombi operation mistakes were reduced by 90 percent and payroll was reduced by 15 percent. Because of these changes, turnover was increased by 25 percent.
I think that wireless technology is great and a huge part of the future of the hospitality industry. With the implementation of these innovative new systems, restaurateurs will begin to see changes in their revenue and turnover because their waiters and waitresses are able to work faster and more efficiently than was previously possible with the outdated pen and paper system. Servers may now cut down trips to kitchen and spend more time serving the customer and making their experience a memorable one, thereby bolstering repeat guests and creating a much larger customer base.
A repeat question has been whether or not to charge for wireless internet access at properties. When the technology was fairly young the answer was yes, but now that the technology is more readily available it is necessary to offer the service for free. Guests to come to expect the service for free.
It has been shown time and time again that wireless technology is the future of the hospitality business when it comes to hardware. Hospitality uses it for advertising. Hospitality uses it for it's in-house systems and hospitality uses it for it's guests in it's properties. It is very important that the industry leaders embrace wireless technology in the future because if they don't then they will fail and those that do embrace the technology will succeed and leave everyone else behind.

1 comment:

Laffey said...

I agree that wireless is becoming ever more popular and prevalent in restaurants. I find it interesting that some restaurants were able to demonstrate such drastic improvements to their business with the addition of fast and efficent wireless internet. I do not believe wireless internet is appropriate for all restaurants and establishments, but I definitely believe that if it properly used it can help business and create a happier and more loyal customer. I am sure that people will come to expect free wireless internet at certain restaurants in the future, as people have a growing dependence on the internet, as it is being used more and more in everyday life.