NovaDine, a provider of digital ordering software for multi-unit restaurant chains, continues to offer out-of-the-box innovative solutions to successful eateries during COVID-19 restrictions.  Most recently, their technology has empowered Urban Plates in California to offer Curbside Pickup.

With government mandates in place around the country to try and mitigate the COVID-19 pandemic, restaurants are working hard to put processes in place that keep everyone safe.

Curbside Pickup allows customers to place their orders online via any device. Upon arrival at the location, based on the restaurant settings, the customer  ‘checks in’ on their mobile device and is prompted to enter identifying information – parking slot number if that restaurant location has designated curbside pickup slots, or make/model/color of vehicle. The NovaDine system alerts the restaurant through the POS by printing a ticket or displaying a message. The food is then delivered to the customer in the parking lot. Customers enjoy the safety and convenience of staying in their vehicle, and restaurants are able to comply with current restrictions.

Urban Plates, which began in 2011 with a single restaurant in Del Mar, California, now has 19 locations with more to come in 2020. Best known for expansive menu items made fresh in-house, from scratch, every day that feature clean ingredients, Urban Plates recently began utilizing NovaDine’s Curbside Pickup feature. “NovaDine has been a strong technology partner for Urban Plates,” says Steve Greer, Chief Marketing Officer, Urban Plates. “Innovative solutions like their Curbside Pickup help take friction out of the process for guests and team members.” Urban Plates is headquartered in Encinitas, CA, and has locations throughout San Diego, Orange County, the greater Los Angeles area, Northern California and Washington D.C.

According to a 2019 report in Restaurant Dive, 67% of restaurants said curbside pickup operations were likely to increase. Due to current conditions, a much higher percentage of restaurants throughout the nation are relying on pickup or delivery services to sustain their businesses until the stay-at-home orders are lifted.

While Curbside Pickup has been a popular feature at some retailers for some time now, NovaDine has expanded its features to include Contactless Curbside Pickup as well. This takes restaurants’ compliance with social distancing measures to the next level by eliminating any contact that could be incurred from the server delivering to the customer’s vehicle.  It also foregoes the more expensive option of installing locker or cubby systems.

With the new Contactless Curbside Pickup feature from NovaDine, customers are automatically assigned available pick-up slots for their orders, and the restaurant is notified when the customer arrives to pick up their order along with the ‘slot’ or location where the order should be placed. Slots can be any designated and labeled area within a store, whether on a shelf or table.  The slot locations and labels can be configured in NovaDine’s system to mirror a particular store’s setup and general layout.  This convenient feature provides the functionality of a cubby/locker system (without the associated expense), is available for restaurants to use immediately, and is POS integrated.

In addition to the new Contactless Curbside Check-in, NovaDine has added features to facilitate to-go and delivery operations for restaurants. New features include no-transaction-fee Delivery As A Service integration with DoorDash and Postmates, and EZ Cater marketplace integration that complements existing integrations with Grubhub, Uber Eats, DoorDash and Postmates.

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