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How office canteens can fuel better lunch breaks in 2019

How office canteens can fuel better lunch breaks in 2019

Last autumn we conducted a survey of over 2,000 UK employees with office restaurants and corporate canteens, together with one of our partners, Yoyo, and put out a report revealing our results. Now, we are taking a fresh look at the industry six months on to see how any developments may impact our existing findings.

How office canteens can fuel better lunch breaks in 2019

In 2019 demand for pre ordering is growing…

Last year, the trend for convenience was already strong and even six months on, the demand from consumers for pre-ordering is markedly increasing. Our 2018 research found that already two fifths of UK workers with a canteen (40%) say they would visit their workplace restaurant more often if the service was quicker or they could pre-order their food and pick it up without queuing at all.

This January, technology provider Omnico’s research found that 82% of UK employees would buy meals more often from their workplace canteen or restaurant if they could order ahead and pick up their meal from a dedicated service point. 52% would use order ahead capability every time, if available, and 29% would use it some of the time. 37% of respondents would make two or more extra visits per week if they could order ahead.

…and loyalty is still critical to the offering

Our research showed that well over half (57%) of respondents said they would visit more often if there was a loyalty scheme that offered personalised deals.

Omnico’s recent research showed that 70% said they would visit more frequently if the staff cafeteria operated a personalised loyalty programme which they could access via any channel.

Caterers are starting to respond

We’re seeing caterers increasingly adopting new technologies in response. For example, CH&Co has a dedicated app that is free for all customers to use and Bartlett Mitchell’s digital apps strategy is resulting in 20% growth in site sales. Since launching its first app in 2014, the company has created more than 30 multi-site platforms for client sites – where the front-end design is bespoke and back-end technology is shared.

Event caterers are seeing the benefit

In the world of event venue catering, technology adoption is advancing just as rapidly – our client Compass Group has been using Preoday’s digital ordering platform since 2014 and has seen a 125% increase in sales at combined cash and app bars at Aviva Stadium.

Our corporate catering client Rhubarb has observed an average order value increase of almost 60% in food and drink sales at the Royal Albert Hall within the first three months of using Preoday’s platform in 2018, when compared to the old service.

Elsewhere in the industry, Aramark uses the iPhone Messages App at stadiums for in-seat delivery and Amadeus Food’s Qjacker app provides a pre-order and click and collect service for fans.

With the demand for pre-ordering and loyalty continuing to grow, the driver for contract caterers and their clients to introduce new technologies to increase convenience is stronger than ever.

Click here to read the full report.


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