Why Does ‘Experience Matter’ for QSRs in 2018?

Elevating Experience to Its Rightful Place

Let’s face it: it can be challenging to run quick service restaurants today. With customer preferences evolving and new dining options emerging at every turn, life as a QSR seems more challenging than ever. But at the intersection of more competitors and more demanding customers is a unifying thread that paves the way to competitive advantage and customer loyalty for QSRs. That thread is experience.

Customers are more satisfied and competitors pale in comparison when QSRs rise to the occasion by delivering best-in-class experiences. And while one’s first inclination may not be to put experience and QSR in the same sentence, I would challenge that the QSR space was in fact founded upon delivering unique and memorable experiences. For fast food establishments, the focus on guest experience is an exciting journey back to the future.

When White Castle, arguably the first QSR, was established in 1921, it was founded on the premise of delivering a faster and more convenient experience for its customers in which they could actually see food being prepared. This experience stood out as a refreshing change from the rest of the dining landscape—which, by contrast, required customers to engage in a more time consuming and less transparent dining process.

Today, as global QSRs stare down a rising number of small, nimble food concepts, they are challenged once again to differentiate on experience—this time with the help of a more powerful array of technologies than ever before.

The quest to differentiate on experience is a strategic one for QSRs, and while it can be tempting to restrict experience to omni-channel interactions, we at SICOM know it is about much more than that. To deliver a best-in-class experience is to exceed every expectation without compromise, including:

It is important to remember that in order to truly lead, QSRs must thrive when it comes to all, not just some, of these elements. Therefore, technologies that might on the surface seem merely functional have a much more strategic role to play. Let’s take another look at the QSR experience as it relates to various technologies throughout the restaurant.

Since the role of technology within the QSR is increasingly strategic, it is pivotal that today’s QSR brands seek a different kind of technology partner—one who not only delivers best-in-class solutions, but understands how they strategically fit in the QSR’s larger objectives.

At SICOM, when we hear the word experience, we think of more experiences than the guest’s alone. Behind the satisfied guest are the crew members providing service, the operators managing franchise performance at scale, and the brands leading the way to greater guest loyalty and growth—all critical QSR stakeholders that must enjoy outstanding experiences of their own. Let’s more closely examine three additional dimensions that support outstanding guest experiences.    


Restaurant Experience

The restaurant experience refers to the experiences of the crew and franchisees who serve guests on the front lines. Intuitive, valuable technologies with compelling ROI are one part of the equation, but the other part is delivering the training needed to make those technologies thrive in the restaurant environment.

The SICOM Experience

Empowering restaurant crews to delight guests requires a different kind of technology experience—one that is strategic, agile, and designed to support the full range of needs for brands, franchisees, and crew members. At SICOM, we refer to this as The SICOM Experience, a full-service experience that includes SICOMSERV, our responsive services and support group.

Industry Experience 

Of course, delivering a market-leading experience to our customers is built upon our intimate understanding of the QSR business model, its operational requirements, and its strategic objectives. With 30 years of industry experience under our belts and a dedicated focus on serving QSRs, our industry experience is what shapes our focus as we develop the innovations of tomorrow. 

For the QSR, nothing matters more than experience. That’s why this year, SICOM has adopted Experience Matters as an umbrella theme and touchstone for all that we do. Experience Matters expresses our commitment to applying our industry expertise to empower best-in-class experiences for the customers we serve, and ultimately, their guests.

Experience Matters

Experience the power of a partner set apart. 

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Jim Flynn
February 7, 2018

With over 25 years of experience managing the financing, operations, and profitability of technology-enabled companies, Jim's vision and leadership are integral to continuing to strengthen the value SICOM delivers to our entire industry.

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