- While 26% of restaurants use one technology vendor, 22% use three vendors and 26% use four or more, according to Toast's 2019 Restaurant Success Report. Only 3% said they do not partner with any tech vendors.
- The technologies that are important to restaurants are point of sale (84%), credit card processors (78%), accounting software (52%), business intelligence or reporting and analytics software (50%), payroll software (50%), inventory management (45%), kitchen display systems (37%), labor software (36%) and invoice/procurement management (35%).
- Labor software, which assists with scheduling not payroll, is increasingly becoming more important. In last year's report, only 16% of respondents said labor software was important to their businesses.
Most operators identify the need for technology adoption to help achieve efficiencies and save time and money. That's why 57% of QSR operators this year plan to invest more in back-of-the-house technology such as point-of-sale systems.
But juggling three different vendors doesn't necessarily achieve the efficiency those operators strive to achieve, especially if they have significantly different reporting capabilities. It's also costly to manage three vendors. Respondents for Toast's report noted a desire to streamline their technology vendors to one that offers an all-in-one system.
With point-of-sale systems being the most important technology for restaurants, it's no coincidence that many POS companies are sprinting to adopt more capabilities in response. Toast itself recently secured a $250 million round of funding. Coca-Cola led a $10 million funding round for point-of-sale connectivity platform Omnivore, aiming to make digital restaurant commerce more agile by enabling POS systems to integrate with third-party technologies. Checkmate, a tech platform that funnels delivery orders directly into restaurants' POS systems, also secured $3 million in funding, while NCR acquired Texas P.O.S., a Houston-based provider of point-of-sale solutions for restaurants and merchants.
The number of operators saying labor software is important already doubled from last year and should grow more as restaurants continue to navigate a confluence of staffing challenges from higher wages to a shrinking labor pool due to a tight job market. Scheduling and communication tools are especially important to ensure there are no service disruptions, an issue that has hindered some chains.
This evolution toward a one-stop shop via the POS system is likely the biggest driver behind the market's growth. According to Grand View Research, the restaurant POS market is expected to surpass $22 billion by 2025, driven by the benefits these systems provide in a quickly changing environment.