McDonald’s made the news recently when the QSR chain announced its plans to redefine quality by revamping items from its burger menu. A press release promises customers a range of changes affecting both ingredient quality (softer buns, meltier cheese) and order assembly protocol (caramelized onions, extra special sauce) across the chain’s more than 13,000 US restaurants. A trial run in major cities like New York and Los Angeles is expected to expand nationwide by next year.

With the ability to deliver real-time insights, Vision AI solutions should prove an important ingredient in achieving this new standard of excellence while simultaneously providing for predictive inventory management, proactive health and safety monitoring, real-time customer behavior analysis, and more.  

Plainsight Discusses Computer Vision-Powered Innovation for Restaurants

With the widest breadth of computer vision-focused services and a proven track record of succeeding where other providers have failed, Plainsight empowers restaurants of all types to automate and optimize from their drive-thrus to their walk-in freezers. Plainsight’s leaders have had several recent opportunities to discuss our support of QSR and fast casual  customers and the transformative power of computer vision.

Spotlight Interview: Carlos Anchia Talks to Restaurant Technology News

Restaurant Technology News profiled our Co-Founder and CEO in an interview covering the broad range of use cases computer vision serves for restaurants and the ways Plainsight has distinguished itself through immersion in the restaurant industry and others.  

During the Q&A, Anchia emphasizes three key ROI-generating benefits of computer vision in the restaurant sector. By effectively deploying and managing vision AI solutions, restaurants can expect to: 

  1. Increase customer satisfaction
  2. Reduce food waste
  3. Improve throughput

Successful restaurant operators set a high standard, often producing results across tens or even hundreds of locations. The addition of computer vision not only enables individual locations to perform even better, but also makes it simpler to quickly scale subject matter expertise across a chain’s full footprint of stores.

According to Anchia, the restaurant space is just one of the many sectors where enterprises tend to rely on manual, legacy processes while continually seeking out new ways to innovate. He concludes by underlining the role computer vision will play in addressing the issue of employee turnover – an existential concern for restaurants in particular.  

“Think of a restaurant with 20% churn,” he says, “How much time and money do they spend training new employees? How much valuable subject matter expertise have they seen come and go?” Vision AI solutions have the potential, he argues, to reduce overall turnover by offering employees a greater sense of independence, control, and satisfaction while mitigating the impact of any remaining talent gaps thanks to accelerated, simplified knowledge sharing and improved decision making.

The Main Course: Elizabeth Spears on Vision AI Solutions Restaurants

In a 30-minute video interview for MarketScale’s The Main Course podcast, our Co-Founder and CPO joins host Barbara Castiglia to discuss how computer vision is improving operational efficiency, redefining service excellence, and driving down costs for eateries around the globe. 

Notably, the conversation touches on fears that AI will replace restaurant employees or force humans into the margins of the industry. Far from overhauling the workforce, efficiency-boosting solutions promise to augment human ability and enable front and back of house workers to evolve in their roles. In inventory management, for example, AI can dramatically reduce the time it takes to conduct reviews while ensuring employees devote extra attention where necessary. 

What’s next for an industry that’s always hungry for change? Spears concludes the conversation by suggesting that we can expect the number of use cases for computer vision in restaurants to explode and that the integration of visual data analytics with robotics technology should lead to impressive new capabilities.  

High-Accuracy Food Measurement with Computer Vision: Case Study

In collaboration with partners including World Wide Technology, Google Cloud, and Intel, we recently helped one of the country’s largest privately owned QSR chains realize the value of computer vision for transforming workflows to improve both the employee and customer experience

  • Customer Concerns: In a busy restaurant setting, keeping buffets and serving stations fully stocked with fresh-made favorites is a serious challenge. Managers were historically tasked with manually estimating the remaining servings of dishes and prioritizing kitchen activities to avoid excesses or shortages. Attempts to improve accuracy with scales were unsuccessful. Though the customer collected lots of useful weight data, scales required regular recalibration and miscalculations were common. 
  • Plainsight’s Approach: We installed a camera over the serving station, developed a vision AI solution to calculate serving station fill level, and leveraged weight data throughout training to train models and ensure accurate results. 
  • Results: After bringing the solution into production, we were quickly capable of eliminating human error to achieve 95% accuracy in food measurement, leaving the customer poised to implement this and additional solutions across its thousands of locations. 

Put Vision AI on the Menu

Boost efficiency and productivity, automate key processes, and better satisfy your customers with vision AI solutions deployed and managed by Plainsight. Our platform, end-to-end approach, and proven expertise all empower customers to see more. Request a call to talk with our experts.

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