With the rise in popularity of takeout and delivery amid the pandemic, many facilities went further than simply designating a shelf for pickup orders. On the digital side of things, foodservice operations have done a great job keeping up with contactless demands and updating their processes to include services such as in-app ordering, mobile payment, digital signage and more. But onsite, the pickup process leaves something to be desired. By automating the order handoff to a guest, dining spaces have the opportunity to boost guest satisfaction and safety, too.
In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, restaurants and noncommercial foodservice operations worked quickly to ensure their guests would be able to order and enjoy their favorite foods. Part of these needs included making sure that guests and staff were kept safe; by implementing contactless pickup, operators ensured that guests wouldn’t have to come into contact with staff or other guests when coming to get their food.
Unfortunately, without a streamlined system, orders being prepared and picked up at the same time often led to crowds or lines—nullifying any “contactless” feature. Thankfully, operators had a solution. At the University of Arizona, for example, dining services installed two 15-door food lockers from Apex Order Pickup Solutions in their student union, serving two restaurant concepts. In the first 12 weeks, more than 9,230 orders had been picked up from the lockers.
How order pickup lockers help with safety and enhance customer experience
At the University of Arizona, the dining team implemented a comprehensive plan to reduce health risks at their facilities. Christine Carlson, the university’s senior associate director of dining and nutrition, realized automated food lockers could play an important role in their program by encouraging social distancing and, of course, by providing contactless pickup.
But beyond safety, contactless pickup lockers enhance guest experience, too. When an order comes in via the mobile app, a delivery code is printed out on a ticket in the kitchen. And when the order’s ready to be picked up, an employee takes the ticket to the locker and scans the code, which indicates the compartment to load the order. Once the food is placed in the locker, the customer receives a notification that their food is ready, at which point they can go to the locker and scan their code, and the locker will open. There’s no standing in line with other guests, no waiting at the counter for a worker to bring up the order—just a fast, streamlined, truly contactless pickup.
By implementing a truly contactless pickup system, operators at noncommercial food and beverage locations can build up their to-go business while maintaining the quality of the rest of the foodservice program.
To learn more about how contactless pickup lockers help complete the customer journey while keeping staff and guests safe, visit www.apexorderpickup.com.
This post is sponsored by Apex Order Pickup Solutions