Industry Update
Opinion Article24 March 2016

How POS systems are transforming the hospitality industry

By Joshua Smith, Operations Manager at EPOSability

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Every day, technological advances are changing the way we live our lives – and for the hospitality industry, the most dramatic developments are taking place thanks to the latest, highly sophisticated POS systems. Today's guests and customers are now accustomed to personalised service that is smoother and more efficient than ever before, thanks to better customer data and faster payment systems that eliminate the laborious processes of the past. So, in order stay ahead of the game, it's vital for those in the hospitality world to keep abreast of the latest innovations in point of sale technology.

Gain a competitive edge with speedy payment systems

If your hospitality business is to gain a competitive lead, it needs to take advantage of the positive transformation that can be achieved with today's state-of-the-art POS systems. Today's hospitality outlets are utilising new payment functionalities that remove the traditional, time-consuming ritual for customers of waiting for service staff to bring them the bill. The rewards of this transformation are great; with the right POS system you can help your customers pay quicker and more efficiently, even during peak times.

Three new ways for customers to pay

Cafés, bars and restaurants are all making significant time savings per cover with these three high-tech methods of payment, all of which can be integrated with the latest point of sale systems:

  • Contactless. In the past few years, contactless payment has become a mainstream way to pay, and the results for business are beginning to show. In environments like bars and cafés where queues are common, contactless methods of payment are having an especially beneficial effect, allowing lines to move faster as transactions are processed more efficiently. The best POS systems accept contactless cards and Apple Pay for a seamless and satisfying customer experience.

  • Pre-pay. A fantastic time-saver for takeaway outlets in particular, pre-payment systems work by allowing the customer to place their order and pay online. Rather than joining a long, lunchtime queue, customers can simply pick up their order and walk away, saving precious minutes out of their lunch hour, while the restaurant can serve a greater number of people in the same amount of time.

  • Mobile ordering. Taking the pre-pay concept one step further, mobile ordering allows customers already in your bar or restaurant to place their order at their seat, using their smartphone. In a busy establishment, this takes the hassle out of getting served; no more queueing for ages at the bar or trying and failing to catch the attention of a passing waiter. Using functionality provided by companies like Boppl, the order is sent electronically to the restaurant's bar or kitchen, cutting out the middleman to create faster service times and reduce the likelihood of error.

Making it personal

But it's not just about faster payments and quicker queues. Arguably the real jewel in the crown of today's intelligent POS systems is the unprecedented access they offer to detailed customer data – letting you view overall trends as well as zooming in on individual customers' patterns and preferences. Used intelligently, this data can help savvy businesses to plan ahead by purchasing stock that they predict will sell, thus improving their profit margins. And the cleverest hospitality outlets are reaping the benefits of highly sophisticated loyalty schemes, retaining valuable custom by analysing their regulars' habits to offer a highly personalised service, tailored just to them.

Point of sale: a positive step forwardWhatever your speciality within the hospitality industry, it's likely that your competitors are already taking advantages of the transformative powers of POS. And with all the benefits that the latest technology offers – faster service, better data, happier customers - it's clear that the latest POS systems hold the key to the future of hospitality.

Joshua Smith

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