Patty the Robot
BurgerFi, one of the nation’s fastest-growing, premium fast-casual concepts, is testing and expanding five new technologies and creative strategies to stay ahead of evolving consumer preferences and combat widespread labor shortages that have plagued the restaurant industry since the onset of the pandemic. The brand remains at the forefront of innovation as part of its commitment to providing the best restaurant guest experience, while continuing its aggressive expansion up the Eastern Seaboard.
“While the entire restaurant industry faces macro headwinds, BurgerFi is determined to be resilient and forward-thinking,” said Karl Goodhew, Chief Technology Officer at BurgerFi. “Leveraging technology is a key factor in delivering guest and employee happiness.”
To satisfy the hunger of guests on-the-go, BurgerFi will be the first restaurant to launch in-car ordering in the new generation of 5G interactive cars rolling off production lines starting in the summer of 2022. Through a partnership with Mavi.io—an in-car retail marketplace that brings safe, easy, curated shopping to the dashboard of consumers’ favorite cars—guests can order BurgerFi favorites, including all-natural burgers, fresh-cut fries and creamy custard shakes, from the comfort of their vehicle by using their voice or their car’s interactive dashboard. It notifies the restaurant when you arrive so your fresh order can be delivered curbside.
Further redefining its service model, BurgerFi is testing QR code table ordering alongside the traditional counter ordering option to optimize the service experience. The QR codes can reduce wait times while allowing team members to focus on hospitality and fresh food preparation. Customers also have the option to order additional items during or after their meal right from their table. Simultaneously, BurgerFi also is testing self-ordering kiosks, giving guests a highly convenient and fun way to order. The units are high-tech and high-visual to help diners easily select their meal and pay.
With 25 “ghost kitchens” operating to match consumer demand for delivery, BurgerFi recently opened a hybrid food hall with both dine-in options and a commissary for delivery at Epic Kitchen in Chicago, Illinois, as well as the chain’s first international ghost kitchen in Dubai. With the increase in delivery demand, Ghost kitchens help BurgerFi bring all-natural burgers and hand-cut sides to more customers while expanding reach in new markets.
“Mavi.io’s in-car retail marketplace is driving OnMyWay CommerceTM by doing all the work when drivers need to pick up something while on the road—whether that’s a meal, a phone charger, a coffee or a few groceries—so they can make the most of every trip,” said Cynthia Hollen, CEO and co-founder of Mavi.io. “A driver can just tell their car that they’re hungry, for example, and the technology does the rest, identifying the best location for them to order from based on their destination, helping them order and pay, and timing their curbside pickup perfectly, so their meal is fresh and ready right when they swing by.”
Acting as an extension of the BurgerFi team, Patty the Robot debuted this month at BurgerFi’s Indiantown Road location in Jupiter, interacting with customers, serving meals directly to tables, and returning used trays to the kitchen. Patty is programmed to know the restaurant layout and can interact with guests to ensure she’s able to get her job done. This innovation supports employees, enhancing efficiencies and allowing restaurants to provide quality guest service.
“Patty may be the answer to employee shortages across the hospitality industry,” says Goodhew. “By integrating automation with human operations, we give our employees the support they need and our guests the experience they crave. Our employees will always be the most important part of the guest experience, and robots allow them to continue to focus on great hospitality.”
For more information and to find the nearest location, visit www.burgerfi.com and download the BurgerFi app.