Dinner in the Cloud. How cloud-based applications are changing the restaurant experience.

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Humans love food. We also love tablets and smart devices. Heck, we’d eat the food we love off the tablets if we could—let’s face it, someday we probably will. For whatever reason, there’s something special about using the power of technology to make a night out taste even better. When a waiter arrives at your table, sleek iPad in hand ready to take your order, you can’t help but feel a teensy bit sophisticated. And it’s a good thing because at this very moment, a new breed of tablet toting maître ’ds are packing iPads loaded with cloud-based applications that are changing the service industry (and your dining experience) forever.

Orders out of chaos

Despite its chic and alluring persona, the restaurant industry is sometimes fraught with chaos. Hard-working restaurateurs resign themselves to a revolving door of chefs, servers and late-night Tomfoolery and its power to sweeten or sour a customer’s or worse, a food critic’s experience. Never mind the mountain of receipts, reconciliations and inventory that managers must tackle every year at tax time.

With cloud-based applications, restaurant managers and owners can leave some of their stress behind with customized applications that;

  • Simplify training and system use for servers
  • Simplified financial management
  • Reduce operational costs
  • Reduce software costs
  • Create opportunities to connect with customers and implement CRM

Cloud-based applications are intuitively designed and allow servers to easily track their tables and complete transactions. Managers are empowered monitor app usage and inventory and can receive valuable notifications with real-time reports from one or multiple locations.

Don’t just eat

Cloud-based point-of-sale applications offer more than just sexy iPads and organized waiters. For most of us, going out to eat means heading to one of our top five favorite places. We have a craving for burgers, bulgogi or steak frites and set off to our “local” to answer the call. The only down side is that every time we must ask for our burger without mayonnaise, or our steak medium-rare. Oh, and although we love the Chinese place we always miss out on their special events.

For customers, cloud-based applications are the gateway to dining bliss

With cloud-based applications foodies and waiters can create personalized accounts kept onsite that include favorites, preferences and dietary restrictions. Modifications and changes to an order are captured electronically and delivered to the chef directly ensuring that “no tomatoes” actually means no tomatoes. Point of sale credit card processing systems can be integrated with cloud-based applications on iPads, giving patrons the option to pay with ease and even receive dinner receipts by email (a super feature for travelers). And a good CRM system will forward foodies promotions and info based on their preferences, dietary restrictions and purchase behaviors while keeping them informed of special events like guest chef or prix fixe menu.

A cost-effective easy-to-use cloud-based application can allow the restaurant industry to focus on the experience and the food, and consumers to enjoy a new level of service, precision and accuracy. Whether it’s a mom and pop burger joint or a five star fusion bistro, hassle-free customer service is always a special treat.