Over the last few years, many restaurant operators have become well-versed in the struggles of dealing with multiple “islands” of technology. The pandemic forced quick tech upgrades across the country, extending far beyond standard loyalty and payment processing applications. New software was added—from online ordering, curbside pickup solutions, and mobile payments to AI modules, customer data platforms, and more. Often, this software couldn’t talk to existing systems. As a result, operators who added quick, bolted-on tech upgrades in response to pandemic conditions have to constantly reconcile data from a wide range of sources.
“It’s essential to have a strong, central platform and one version of the truth for transactions and data,” says Chris Lybeer, chief strategy officer for Revel Systems. “Today we have access to more data than ever, but it’s only possible to make smart data-backed business decisions when the insights tell a clear, cohesive, and actionable story.”
Of course, these disparate systems are all designed to solve specific problems. Shifting to reliance on a single system to do everything would open up the possibility of losing critical insights—not to mention massive disruptions during the transition. So how can operators transition to a centralized, more unified system without losing access to best-in-class software?
“The flexibility to choose multiple solutions allows operators to deploy best-of-breed solutions for their brand,” Lybeer says. “No single provider can be the best at everything, and a platform that facilitates easy connection of the best of the best will yield better business results and an elevated experience for end users.”
In practice, this could mean that an operator using an integration with rich functionality for loyalty could also access key data on their end-of-day sales report and online ordering volume, all within a single dashboard on the backend of their platform software.
“The beauty of a modern platform is that it can support existing technologies through direct integration while vastly improving the restaurant’s core technology and operational functionality,” says Lybeer.
It’s important, however, to choose a modern cloud POS platform that is genuinely open. “Be careful, because often tech providers will tout openness when in reality there are several restrictions,” Lybeer says. “You’ll want to ask these questions early in your buying cycle to ensure there’s full support for your key integrations.”
Revel Systems is known as the first cloud point-of-sale system to leverage the iPad. It prides itself on a truly open API, allowing restaurants to connect the systems they already use. “Whether brands choose from our exhaustive (and ever-growing) list of vetted ecosystem partners or have custom integrations of their own, our platform has the flexibility to accommodate that,” Lybeer says.
The list of necessary restaurant tech is likely to expand even further in the next few years. IoT in the kitchen is becoming more common, as well as voice technology, cameras for food quality assurance, and beyond.
“Choosing the right platform right now is the difference between future-proofing a business or getting caught unprepared,” Lybeer says. “Having the right platform in place will be the only way to keep up and pull ahead for restaurants.”
To learn more about Revel, visit the website.