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Success StoriesBrightening Up Hardee’s Stores and Profits with Digital Menu Boards

Posted by SICOM | December 18, 2017


Phase Three Star is an independent owner and operator of more than 40 Hardee’s restaurants in the Jacksonville, Gainesville and Tampa areas. As the largest Hardee’s franchise owner in the sunshine state, Jack Kemp, CEO of Phase Three Star is looking to grow his footprint and considers technology as an important factor in the success of his restaurants.

“Digital Menu Boards are the cost of entry in this space today,” Kemp explained. “They look better, are more professional, add to the ambiance, and they present the product in a better light. If an operator is investing capital in a restaurant, they should certainly invest in Digital Menu Boards. It’s like buying a new car – do you go with the tape deck or the bluetooth technology?”

The classic menu boards have always been used in the Hardee’s locations. They would be switched for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Changes to the static menu boards were made sparingly due to the time-consuming process to manually update them.

Kemp is slowly transitioning his original Hardee’s restaurants that he purchased to Digital Menu Boards as he remodels them, but with the first restaurant he built in 2014, he invested in Digital Menu Boards from the start. He currently has nine locations leveraging the power of Digital Menu Boards and will be adding a few more in the next couple months.

SICOM Digital Menu Boards 

SICOM is the only approved digital menu board partner for CKE Restaurants, the owner and operator of Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s brands, among others. One of the major reasons that the SICOM Digital Menu Boards solution was chosen was because of its reliability. Other systems on the market were known to overheat and shutdown. “In Florida, we need robust solutions that will not have issues and keep our operations flowing,” said Kemp.

Attention-grabbing Content that Boosts Sales

SICOM Digital Menu Boards empower franchise owners to leverage suggestive selling, featuring the most relevant promotions across day-parts. The vivid graphics and video elements available offer a more entertaining experience for guests and hold 10x more attention than traditional static displays. The clean, bright Digital Menu Boards not only capture attention, but also ensure visual consistency across locations to help enhance brand recognition.

“Digital Menu Boards help to light up the restaurant and present well to guests,” said Kemp. “The four-panel boards enable us to have three menu panels and one with more interesting, attention-grabbing content, such as biscuits coming out of the oven with steam coming off them. This helps sell food – it is orders of magnitude better to have movement on the screen, such as flames or steam,” said Kemp.

By intuitively presenting the latest menu options, including timely specials and promotions, and leveraging powerful graphics for suggestive selling, Digital Menu Boards can help franchises grow their sales.

Increased Efficiency and Accuracy

Easily updating content is another significant benefit of Digital Menu Boards. SICOM’s web-based portal allows for anytime, anywhere content management, enabling franchises to eliminate wasteful printed graphics associated with static displays and time-consuming update cycles. With a centralized content management system (CMS), content updates (new menu items, new pricing, calorie counts, etc.) can be made in real-time.

For Kemp’s 40+ locations, Hardee’s corporate updates the content and provides it to SICOM to load into the system. Updates are automatically made throughout all appropriate locations. If a new limited-time offer comes in or if there is a pricing change, the burden is removed from the restaurant managers and franchise owners.

“It is much more efficient and much easier with the Digital Menu Boards,” explained Kemp. “The biggest operational impact for us is that we never have changeover issues between breakfast and lunch, or lunch and dinner. The restaurant management team doesn’t have to worry about it and its one less thing for the crew to do.”

With the central content management capabilities, SICOM’s Digital Menu Boards also help ensure the accuracy of product pricing and calorie counts. The updates are made in one location and automatically updated across all locations – eliminating the opportunity for errors that could potentially negatively impact sales.


“When we installed our first Digital Menu Boards, we were nervous and had cardboard print-outs created just in case something went wrong,” explained Kemp. “However, it went so smoothly, we haven’t had to worry about that since.”

Kemp also added that “we have not had to use SICOM’s support very much, but when we have, the SICOM team has been very responsive.”

Photo by Michael Rivera (Own work) / CC BY-SA 4.0

Digital Menu Boards Quick Guide

Learn more about digital menu boards and their advantages over static menu boards.

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