September 5, 2019

Are kiosks good for Clover?

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CloverFIN customers have seen a little kiosk at that location (160 Federal St.). We’re testing it out. And I have to admit I’m pretty ambivalent about the whole idea.

I feel like a special part of Clover is making fewer people strangers. I love this part of working at Clover. I think many of our staff love this. We love getting to know people.

This is my concern about the kiosk: It’s not really a thing that connects people. At some of our restaurants 1/2 of orders are already coming in through the App. With the kiosk we could get to a point where we’re talking to the small minority of our customers. I don’t love that.

At the same time I can see what’s ahead for us all. McDonald’s has moved 100% kiosk (essentially) in many stores. They’re doing it really well. Others will follow. It’s a combination of customer preference and trying to address rising labor costs.

I decided to invest in making our own kiosk. We’re testing it. And it’s uncomfortable to watch it at work. Stacia is making daily updates. In some cases it’s working just the way we’d like, a little booster when things are really busy. But we’re seeing some really disappointing stuff too. Like staff and customers using it to avoid talking to one another. Next step is to test a limiter that only allows the kiosk to operate when the restaurant is really busy. Stay tuned.

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