SICOM Drives Performance and Customer Satisfaction at Popeyes

Gilligan Oil Company, founded in 1993, employs more than 1,000 individuals in Ohio to run its convenience stores, quick service restaurants, fuel stations and car washes. On the QSR side, the company owns eight Popeyes, 22 Subways and 25 Dunkin Donuts. Gilligan Oil’s core values include: customer focus, discipline, respect, accountability, integrity, and professionalism. It is these core values that have driven the company’s success. 

These core values are at the forefront of executives’ minds when making important decisions, such as partnering with SICOM to leverage technology solutions to drive restaurant performance and customer satisfaction at its Popeyes locations.

The Need for a Reliable POS

In January 2015, when Gilligan Oil built its first Popeyes restaurant from the ground up, they weren’t happy with the Point of Sale (POS) systems being used in their other locations and decided to look for a new vendor.

Bob Gierhart, director of operations, explained that the previous vendor was not reliable and there was quite a bit of lag time. The systems were slowing down over time and the service the vendor provided to get issues fixed was not good. They needed a true technology partner.

“SICOM’s POS is reliable and easy to use,” said Gierhart. “When we switched from the old vendor, SICOM came in and the managers and service counter staff were able to learn the SICOM POS in just one day.”

The flexibility of SICOM’s POS provides the ability for crew members at the counter to easily cross-sell and up-sell products with prompts to add items to a customer’s order, such as upsized drinks and complementary desserts.

Gierhart has found the reporting functionality to be very informative. “We would like to use it more,” he said. “We’ve had a very positive experience compared to our previous vendor.”

Driving Competition & Performance at the Drive Thru

The company recently began using SICOM’s Drive-Thru Director™ (DTD) at all of its Popeyes locations. “We wanted all of our stores on the same system,” explained Gierhart. “Drive-Thru Director is easy to use—our crews don’t have to do anything. It rotates between three screens: the leader board; goal screen, which shows menu time, queue time and window time; and the cars in the lane.”

Gierhart continued, stating, “Drive-Thru Director helps keep everyone informed and improves our customer service.” It enables the corporate office to go to one location to access all the metrics for the drive thrus at each of its restaurants. “We can see real-time data from all eight stores. I get automatic emails throughout the day and can also log in at any time and get reports. I then know whether to pat a store manager on the back for their store’s performance or push them to improve their numbers.”

The Rack-N-Stack™ feature has been well received by management and crews alike. “It builds competition within our network of stores and helps get times down,” Gierhart explained. “We’ve seen a decrease in speed of service already. In just weeks, speed of service has gone down almost everywhere because we can see times every 15 minutes and it helps encourage friendly competition and enables us to make improvements if needed.”

Capturing Attention with Digital Menu Boards

Gilligan Oil is also leveraging the power of SICOM’s Digital Menu Boards (DMBs) at all of its Popeyes locations. Moving to digital boards from traditional static menu boards has saved significant time for both store managers and the corporate office.

With the web-based portal, the menu boards in all eight Popeyes locations are managed remotely, making it easy to change pricing and LTOs across all of the stores. “Managers are not changing stickers on menu boards like before and the district manager no longer has to travel to each location to individually program all the registers,” said Gierhart. “Now, we can do it through the web-based portal and it syncs to the Digital Menu Boards—saving time for adding LTOs and pricing updates.”

In addition to the time savings, DMBs dynamically capture the attention of restaurant guests. “We have definitely seen incremental sales increases because of the vivid imagery of our products on the Digital Menu Boards,” adds Gierhart.

Gierhart added, “We’ve had a very positive experience with SICOM when ordering new systems for the stores. They’ve been on time and their service has been good.” 

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