It’s Friday night at the restaurant. As the owner of this buzzing social phenomenon you smile at the sight of bustling waiters and the line of patrons at the door just waiting to experience the fine dining your restaurant is famous for.
For the moment everything seems ideal…who doesn’t want their restaurant to be the Friday night hot-spot? But then out of the corner of your eye you see a couple from the back of the line check their watches and reluctantly walk away. You quickly point them out to the host and ask if he has spoken to them. He says “no, but the wait is at least two hours…they probably just don’t have that kind of time.” Looking around you notice the irony of many empty chairs. Even more disconcerting you see several other groups approaching your door, but also turning away.
If this experience sounds familiar to you, you may also be considering this seemingly formidable problem of inefficient throughput.
How much money is walking out your door?
This question has been a sobering reality for popular restaurant owners everywhere …. until now.
Executive administrators at the Restaurant have shown revolutionary vision in their enlistment of the latest techniques to reduce waiting time, better utilize the facility and dramatically increase revenue.
Their foresight combined with the visual capabilities of ProcessModel has provided the company with the potential to make this lackluster experience a distant memory for Restaurant customers in the future. Here’s how…
Administrators at the restaurant knew that the notorious problem of inefficient restaurant service can be attributed to either of two major culprits; either the serving process itself is inefficient, or there are unused chairs despite the line outside the door. Administrators at the restaurant employed the specific capabilities of ProcessModel analysis to address the second of these problems. They then pursued an optimized table mix which would offer maximum throughput using minimum space.
To illustrate this need for an optimized table mix, suppose the restaurant has fifty parties of two waiting to be seated, but only 10 two-top tables. These additional two-person parties will likely be seated at four-top or six-top tables. When a party of ten walks in, there will likely be no suitable place for them, despite the dozens of empty seats. In other words, if there are 300 available seats, but only 200 seats which meet each party’s needs, there are 100 potential spaces for customers which are simply being wasted.
In order to create a solution which can effectively address this problem, administrators at the restaurant first had to acquire several essential pieces of information.
- First, what is the party mix? In other words, on average, how many parties of two, four, or ten are in attendance during peak hours?
- Second, when is each of the parties most likely to arrive?
- Third, what is the existing table mix? (How many two-top, four-top, and six-top tables are in the restaurant now?)
- And finally, how many locations are available for large parties?
Once this essential information was gathered, administrators used ProcessModel consulting services and software to create a solution.
These key bits of information about the restaurant processes enabled consultants at ProcessModel to create a computerized process optimization simulation of the flow of the restaurant’s customers through their existing system. This simulation allowed the consultants to observe current processes, predict bottlenecks, and through optimization ultimately optimize table mixes. They then reported on the predicted dilemmas and possible solutions in order to assist the restaurant in creating a more streamlined overall process. By instituting an optimized table mix, the restaurant is now able to achieve maximum throughput.
It is important to note that the optimized table mixes are created specifically for use during peak hours. During times when the restaurant is not at maximum capacity, it is less important to use an optimized table mix as there is no shortage of available seating, regardless of each party’s size.
The outcome of the model created for the restaurant has been astounding. The optimized table mixes have had a profound effect in the locations where they have been adopted.
In these locations, the optimized table mix has shown a fifteen percent Increase in revenue. How would you like to increase your company’s revenue without adding people, changing the size of the facility or adding marketing budget?
In addition, the optimized table mix resulted in a thirty percent increase in seat utilization. This increase was facilitated by the model on a detailed level, as it allowed the restaurant to recognize that their need for two-top and four-top tables far exceeded their need for larger tables. Through the use of optimized table mixes, the restaurant has dramatically increased seat utilization while actually decreasing the total number of seats!