I recently had the opportunity to attend the 2018 TechTable Summit in New York City. Now in its 4th year, the event hosted by the founders and partners of TechTable, is an opportunity for restaurant industry operators, investors and entrepreneurs to come together to explore the ecosystem of hospitality, technology and investment.

Participating in the 2018 TechTable Summit was incredibly valuable and clearly demonstrates the progress, especially in the areas of tech and investment, that the restaurant industry has witnessed in recent years.

Below are some of key take-aways from this year’s event…

Technology Should Give You Time to Do More Meaningful Work

During a panel session titled “Beyond the POS”, Emmanuelle Skala, SVP of Customer Success at Toast, said something that I believe really sums up the benefit of restaurant technology.

Skala said, “I think of technology as a way to automate the tactical work that isn’t adding value to your customers and free up your employees’ time to do more meaningful work.”

Emmanuelle Skala’s comment above infers that effective restaurant technologies should:

  • Be Easy to Implement, Train & Use on a Day-to-Day Basis
  • Seamlessly Connect & Integrate with Other Systems
  • Provide Timely Access to Data to Improve Decision Making
  • Make Growth More Predictable & Affordable

New Era in Restaurant Technology

The hospitality industry has historically lagged behind other industries when it comes to new and emerging technologies. It appears that is changing. This is giving operators the chance to take their businesses to the next level.

Restaurant technology, from the POS to Delivery to Back of House Automation and everything else in between, will only become less challenging to manage as time moves on.

Simultaneous Tailwinds & Headwinds

It’s a unique time for the industry at large. The hospitality industry currently faces simultaneous tailwinds and headwinds.

Millennials and Gen-Zers are spending money and promoting convenient access to healthy dining options to go with authentic, Instagram-ready experiences. On balance, this should translate to increased top line revenue.

On the other hand, the constant challenges of increased labor regulation and a tight job market creates uncertainty and directly affects the bottom line.

These tailwinds and headwinds should motivate those within the hospitality ecosystem (Operators, Investors, Technology Companies, etc.) to continue to identify ways to deliver value.

What will ultimately emerge are better experiences for both consumers and operators and the continued growth of the industry.

See you at the TechTable Summit 2019?

Needless to say, we look forward to next year’s 2019 TechTable Summit and to witnessing how this ecosystem of hospitality, tech and investing evolves.

Have some thoughts of your own to share on the topic? I’d love to hear from you!

Send me an email (jeff…at…xtraCHEF.com) or reach out to me on LinkedIn.