The Benefits of Pay-at-the-Table POS Technology

The National Restaurant Association’s “2030” report comes with a stern warning for restaurant operators looking to stay competitive in the coming decade, “If you’re not doing business through a phone or tablet — whether it’s delivery, online ordering or even tableside POS — you could find your business struggling.”

Just as they do now, the guests of the future will demand a tech-immersive experience. Fortunately, there’s a way to both impress your tech-savvy future guests, and create a safer environment for your customers and staff. It’s called Pay-at-the-Table POS Technology.

The Case for Pay at the Table POS Systems and Technology

If you’re not already familiar with QSR technology, then consider this article your guide to creating a safer, more efficient restaurant. In short, Quick Service Restaurant (QSR) technology refers to the interactive digital kiosks, tablets, scanners and mobile computers commonly used by restaurants to facilitate the guest experience.

More than a handy gadget, modern QSR tech is how restaurants are adapting to the toughest challenges presented in today’s age. Though many consumers chose to minimize their risk of exposure by eating at home during the pandemic, many QSRs are now experiencing a massive surge in orders and traffic. Why?

Among the myriad of factors listed in the aforementioned National Restaurant Association report is the projected rapid expansion of pay-at-the-table POS systems and handheld payment terminals.

That’s why forward-thinking QSRs are transforming their operations, their service offerings, and their capabilities with new QSR technologies and innovations, like mobile computers, imagers, scanners and tablets that offer a safer way to order and pay.

8 Ways Pay-At-The-Table POS Technology Benefits Your Restaurant

QSR technologies are constantly evolving and increasingly necessary in today’s COVID-restricted environment. None more so than pay-at-the-table POS systems, and the technology that supports them.

Put simply, pay-at-the-table POS systems help servers perform their jobs more efficiently; make more money, and eliminate many of the face-to-face interactions that are known to spread Coronavirus.

But it’s not only servers and guests who benefit from pay-at-the-table POS systems. The advantages that pay-at-the-table POS technology bring to your business are too good to overlook.

  1. Improve Efficiency
    Pay-at-the-table POS systems are exactly what they sound like, i.e. POS systems make it possible for customers to pay on a device installed at their table, or with a server using a mobile payment device.
    Compare that simple interaction to the traditional way in which a server at a restaurant typically handles credit card payments:

    • Take the check to the guest table
    • Walk away to give guest time to find their credit card
    • Return to pick up the card and check
    • Walk to the stationary POS system elsewhere in the building
    • Bring guest a receipt for a tip and signature
    • Walk away, again
    • Return to the table for the receipt
    • Walk back to the POS system to adjust the transaction for gratuity

    As illustrated from our above example, pay-at-the-table POS systems not only save time and steps, they enable check presentment and payment to be done in one interaction rather than in multiple steps, and extra trips to the stationary point of sale system.

  2. Faster Table Turns
    The traditional payment process between server and guest takes, on average, nine minutes per table. Pay-at-the-table POS systems and mobile devices eliminate the old time-consuming method of accepting payments, and replaces it with a new streamlined process.

    Faster service means faster table turns and more people served, which means more revenue per shift. When Olive Garden switched to pay-at-the-table technology in 2015, a spokesperson told the LA Times their table turnover rate improved by an average of 7 to 10 minutes.

  3. Faster Table Turns
    The more your servers have to run back and forth between the table and the POS terminal, the more your guests have to wait. Even if your team provides a fantastic dining experience, a longer-than-necessary wait time can damper a perfect experience. Pay-at-the-table technology lets you cap the meal with the fantastic customer experience, and keep customer reviews focused on the food and service, instead of a wait time you can’t avoid.
  4. More Gratuities and Tips
    Less running between POS and table means servers can spend more time interacting with your guests and providing better, more personalized service. Better service leads to better tips. Many tableside devices and pay-at-the-table POS systems also have a tip prompt screen before the final screen. These handheld devices can automatically calculate and suggest tip amounts so guests can easily see how much and what percentage they’re tipping.
  5. Greater Customer Engagement
    Pay-at-the-table technology also enables servers with more face time with customers. Instead of just dropping off the check and walking away to serve other customers, your waitstaff can stay at the table throughout the entire transaction, thus providing an opportunity to better engage with the customer.

    Many pay-at-the-table solutions even come with survey features to ask customers about their experiences, and alert a manager immediately if a guest isn’t satisfied. Pay-at-the-table POS systems with an offer to send digital receipts are also a great way to email capture and build your customer database.

  6. Safer Workflows
    Customer service and safety requirements are changing rapidly, but pay-at-the-table technology like Zebra’s contactless scanners deliver a timely solution for safer and more convenient QSR operations.

    Would you like to learn more on how Zebra’s easy-to-sanitize mobile devices are helping teams stay safe as they perform mobile workflows and manage inventory. It’s as easy as following their simple cleaning instructions.

  7. Better Payment Security
    With pay-at-the-table technology, the credit card never leaves the customer’s possession, eliminating the threat of potential skimming, theft and fraud. This simple gesture gives customers peace of mind that their payment card data or identity isn’t being compromised when the card is out of their sight.
  8. Increase Profitability
    The aforementioned advantages of pay-at-the-table POS systems ultimately add up to increased profitability. Faster table turns, happier customers and more efficiency equate to better loyalty and a greater return on all of your investments.

There are many potential benefits of implementing pay-at-the-table POS systems in your restaurant, but you may need some help choosing the best solutions for your business. Whether you’re a QSR franchise or a Michelin star establishment, ReSource Point of Sale can customize the best pay-at-the-table solution to fit your unique business needs.Contact us today.