Catering software trends are shifting and take a new focus as the hospitality and tourism industry as a whole is experiencing a significant growth dip due to the Covid-19 situation. According to Deloitte, this situation is starting to change as we see some businesses slowly reopening. It is also worth noting that 2019 was a peak year for both domestic and international expenditure on tourism, so the decline due to Covid-19 may seem extra steep while compared to an average year.
The partial reopening of the country means that caterers are now looking again to welcome visitors to their venues after a time of low activity or being temporarily shut down. For many operators, the last few months has allowed them to look into their catering software system amongst other areas of their business to prepare for the time ahead.
As an example of advancements in catering software, McKinsey reported that: “one hotel company is piloting a program to drive ancillary revenues through the use of next-product-to-buy algorithms. These algorithms can analyse historical data to determine, for example, that a customer who enjoys an early-morning coffee and is likely traveling with a partner, can be offered a buy-one-get-one-free offer just as the customer walks by the hotel coffee shop in the morning through mobile location data.”
For many caterers this may seem too complicated however customer expectations change rapidly and it is essential for operators to monitor these shifts. At Priava we analyze current trends in the market for caterers, restaurants and in hospitality software. Here is our top five:
- Predictive Analytics
As in the example from McKinsey above, the availability of big data and predictive analytics results in the option to make tailored offers and predict peak demand times for catering requirements. This is not only a huge opportunity for additional sales, it also improves planning, and helps venues to buy their supplies accordingly with minimal waste.
- Focus on complete solutions
Where catering software solutions were previously often an add-on to accounting or booking software, now caterers have numerous options to choose from. Platforms are purpose-built to their needs, including all additional requirements such as room bookings, audio-visual requirements, ticketing and sales and marketing tools. Priava is proud to be at the forefront of this new generation of software for the catering and hospitality industry.
- Online chat and real-time bookings
With chatbots gaining traction amongst the general public, it is now acceptable, or even expected, to have a chatbot answer general queries which frees up costly manhours from your team. Bookings are also made in real-time instead of on-paper, so that both you and the customer are always in the know when tables, rooms and function spaces are booked.
- Organic food & drink
Popularity of organic and health food options is on the rise. Patrons expect a wide range of food options, from healthy choices to comfort food. More options requires a more elaborate ordering and planning scheme while maintaining close relationships with ever growing suppliers. Sound catering software systems come in to manage all that.
- Robotic service
According to McKinsey, some hotels are testing with robots delivering room service instead of human staff. This saves considerable time to get to the right floor, right room and back. The robot only needs to deliver what is ordered, without the need to take orders or advise guests on their food options. Whilst this may not be implementable for most restaurants and caterers, this development is something to watch for the catering and hospitality industry. At Priava, this is also a trend we monitor closely to keep you updated.
Interested to learn more on how purpose-built catering software can help your hospitality business stay on top of bookings, sales, inventory, orders and more so that you can focus on the food? Feel free to book an obligation free demo or speak to one of our representatives.
Resources used in this article about catering software trends:
– McKinsey & Company: Advanced analytics in hospitality. By Dilip Bhattacharjee, Jules Seeley, and Nathan Seitzman https://www.mckinsey.com/business-functions/mckinsey-digital/our-insights/advanced-analytics-in-hospitality
– Deloitte: Slowly Restarting Tourism. By Adele Labine-Romain: