Special Report | October 2017 | By Sam Oches

Wendy's Drive Thru Success Tips

Excellent execution is the foundation for each and every restaurant’s success.
Wendy's is expanding delivery across the country.
Wendy’s ranked second in speed of service after several years leading the pack. tom dubnaowich
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Vitals>>

Speed of Service: 180.05 seconds

Order Accuracy: 89.7%

What are your tips for improving speed of service at Wendy’s?

First off, it’s essential that each of our restaurants is properly staffed for day-to-day business. When we are properly staffed with trained employees, productivity comes naturally. Secondly, we pride ourselves on running our restaurants efficiently, which includes everything from crewmember scheduling and training to opening and closing procedures. Excellent execution really is the foundation for each and every restaurant’s success, and is the recipe for long-term growth. And last but not least, we’re continually improving and optimizing the layout of Wendy’s kitchens to best facilitate how we serve our customers to reach that optimal drive-thru speed. Despite the speed of service at Wendy’s, we never sacrifice quality to gain improved drive-thru times.

What are your tips for improving order accuracy at Wendy’s?

Similar to improving speed of service, it’s very important that Wendy’s team members are properly trained to take customers’ orders and create menu items. The combination of these two items contributes greatly to the success of executing quality food orders. Additionally, customer engagement is a crucial component when working the drive thru. At Wendy’s, we stress active listening, asking clarifying questions to verify order details, and overall just being a friendly team member. Lastly, we’re continuing to add more self-serve technology, such as mobile ordering and self-order kiosks, both in-restaurant and at the drive thru. These technology advancements put order accuracy in the hands of the customer.

Besides speed and accuracy, what’s the most critical factor to Wendy’s drive-thru success?

It’s a very human component: friendliness. Even when we serve quality food in great timing, we want our staff’s friendliness to be a cut above the rest so that the next time the customer is wondering where to go, they choose Wendy’s.

What’s one innovation that you think is going to change the future of drive thru?

As we’ve seen with the in-restaurant dining experience, mobile ordering and curbside pickup are emerging areas that we’re looking to expand by leveraging the convenience of the drive thru. We also see delivery as another avenue to further customer convenience, which ultimately will impact the drive-thru experience.

—Deepak Ajmani / vice president of restaurant services, operations