Perry Quinn: The mobile app or the online ordering, you know, I put those together a lot of times it's powered by the same. I think that that was a big turning point for the industry to get behind something. And, and again, I think there's so much work on the backend to make the user experience and the onboarding from a speed and efficiency perspective, much easier than it used to be.
Jason Lopez: Before the rise of contract data center services, if you wanted a comprehensive online presence for your restaurant, you basically had to get into the weeds of computer science and do it yourself. But cloud services have gotten so flexible and costs so low, developers now handle that platform layer. They rent servers such as from Amazon, AWS and sell their platform services to restaurants.
Shanny Covey: We found that since COVID software engineers have been working around the clock, trying to get platforms made and designed and ready for restaurants and other businesses to use. So we've grown along with them and given them feedback: this works, this doesn't work.
Jason Lopez: We've come to expect to be able to use our smartphone to access anything. That idea is infecting how data centers even operate. Imagine running enterprise applications and platforms with the ease of using a smartphone. There are people working on this and it's how a restaurant owner even thinks.
Shanny Covey: Well I'm always looking at things to be simpler because I feel like technology has added an element of complexity to our operations that wasn't there before. And in the same way, as in other ways, made it simpler like the online ordering, for instance. But myself in our company, we focus on taking care of our guests, however complex it might be. But the goal is to try to keep it as simple as possible.
Perry Quinn: Some are super savvy. Some are less savvy.
Jason Lopez: In this story of two restaurant owners, one hip to digital and the other, not so much the massive digital adoption because of the lockdown might lead you to think we're on the path of tech companies, making food, but Quinn points out one big reason why he doesn't see that happening.
Perry Quinn: Most of the folks don't come into this to be technologists. They have passion for food, and they have a passion for community
Jason Lopez: Talk to data center engineers, and they may say something similar. They also want to focus on the things that they're passionate about in computer science and let the automation tools handle the mundane stuff and let the complexity recede into the background. Restaurant owners don't want to think about boring stuff as well.
Shanny Covey: We don't think of how it's going to present digitally or with the different platforms. My goal has always been, I got to focus on doing the best that we can here every day for our guests, for every single person that comes in the door, because I feel that everything else will flow from that. And that has always been my premise. And you want to grow your business. You know, you've got to focus on those things. I mean, of course there's the operational cost controls and all that, but you won't have the business. If you don't focus on customer service, food and ambience.
Jason Lopez: Shanny Covey is the co-owner of Robbins and Cambria, California, as well as restaurants in San Louis Obispo. She says because of the pandemic, the concept of takeout, even for a fancy sit-down restaurant is probably here to stay. Her sister, Deb Mok, says she loves the idea of wild ginger transitioning to take out only where she can focus on the kitchen and the food much like the street food hawkers in Singapore. And Perry Quinn says the trends toward a higher end food offerings for takeout and a broader range of restaurants offering takeout could accelerate the development of delivery technologies such as robotic vehicles and drones. This is the Tech Barometer Podcast. I'm Jason Lopez. Tech Barometer is a production of The Forecast. Find more stories on technology at theforecastbynutanix.com.