Thank you to everyone that completed our Technology Survey 2013, which was created in partnership with e-commerce specialist iTradeNetwork and congratulations to John Cunningham from Total Produce Foodservice who wins the prize of an iPad.
The survey has revealed some interesting findings about how technology is being used within the hospitality sector and it’s clear that businesses are adapting the way they operate in order to meet the needs of a fast changing world with more online savvy consumers.
It came as no surprise that the internet is now an integral part of the daily lives of most hospitality businesses, with almost half of respondents saying that they spend over nine hours per week online for work purposes. There were many different activities that respondents went online for with the most popular being to look for news and trends and also when looking to purchase products, equipment, services and suppliers.
Get a FREE Digital Subscription!Enjoy full access to Hospitality Ireland, our weekly email news digest, all website and app content, and every digital issue.
The use of technology within the hospitality sector has become more mainstream over the past few years and many businesses are now using it within their businesses. 79 per cent of operators have an EPOS system and 42 per cent a menu planning system, whilst 40 per cent of suppliers & wholesalers have an ERP system and the same percentage have an e-procurement system. When it came to concerns regarding implementing new technology, over half of all respondents said that the main barrier was the cost of maintaining and upgrading it. However, with cloud based solutions offering a simpler and more cost effective solution, this particular concern is likely to reduce in the coming years.
Certainly if there are concerns over new technology they don’t appear to be preventing the majority of businesses from updating and upgrading their systems. Many respondents said they were intending to implement new systems, with a high proportion saying it was something they were looking to do immediately. In the next 12 months, 15 per cent of respondents said they intended to get menu planning software and 13 per cent an e-procurement system. Using social media is a great way to promote a business and communicate directly with customers. Most hospitality businesses recognise this and are utilising some kind of social network, Facebook is by far the most popular; however, Twitter and LinkedIn are also well used.
A growing demand for online ordering Consumers have long been using the internet for their retail shopping and have also started to embrace it for making bookings and reservations. Whilst it might be true to say that consumers have always been quick to embrace technology that makes their lives easier the same can’t always be said of operators. However, our survey shows that hospitality operators are starting to use online ordering more frequently, 48 per cent of respondents said they sometimes order from suppliers & wholesalers online.
There also seems to be a growing appetite for ordering online, 85 per cent of respondents said they would consider using it if offered by a supplier or wholesaler with the main benefits considered to be the convenience and the ease of browsing products. The results of the survey show that suppliers & wholesalers also seem to be listening to their customer’s desires because 77 per cent of those that didn’t already offer online ordering said they were considering implementing it. The main benefit that suppliers & wholesalers see in trading online is that it will offer more convenience to their customers and will also mean that they can use their existing sales team more effectively.
If you would like to receive a full summary of the results you can request one at www.sur veymonkey.com/s/ HospitalityIreland