As England’s bars, pubs and restaurants are allowed to open once again this weekend, trade bodies are urging them to follow the rules so that they can keep their staff, and punters, safe.
Months of hibernation has allowed time for some tech-savvy people in the hospitality sector to get creative and build solutions that will help venues operate safely.
In fact, lockdown has practically created an entirely new sub-category within the on-trade.
Tech providers like OrderPay, which provides contactless ordering for groups such as PizzaExpress, Five Guys, Cote, Slug & Lettuce, Be At One, Walkabout, and Craft Union Pub Company, stand to gain a lot of ground in the “new normal”.
“Smart mobile technology will play a major role in facilitating table services to allow pubs and restaurants to reopen safely,” said Richard Carter, OrderPay’s founder.
“Mobile technology will provide smart solutions to help venues operating at reduced capacity facilitate social distancing. NFC tap-and-go functionality can get people in and out quickly by enabling customers to pay for a product simply by tapping their phone on shelf labels.”
“For operators wanting to eliminate or manage queuing, mobile phones can also be turned into ‘buzzers’ to inform customers when their order is ready for collection.”
But technology’s role in the restaurant sector will go beyond table reservations and online payments. Companies are also creating software that helps venue owners carry out their own health and safety audits, enabling them to use customer data to track and trace Covid-19, even build body temperature scanners to make sure staff are fit for work.
We’ve taken a look at some of the newer software that has emerged during lockdown, and how they could be used to reopen a bar, pub or restaurant safely this month.