Sponsored by: Relay (Republic Wireless)
"Communication and trying to keep all moving parties on the same page is a challenge every day. Our communication system was quite outdated. Our radios were 10+ years old and keeping up with those fees and charges was quite a project for us.”
That was Andy Worden, General Manager of Delaware North Sportservice at Great American Ball Park last fall. Their team has since implemented Relay, a cost-effective, modern, communication system that keeps all managers in clear communication. "It’s taken our communications to a whole new level. It’s not just communicating, but it's holding people accountable.”
To navigate the changes and disruption that COVID-19 has brought to food service operations, efficient team communication is the key to success.
Here are the 3 challenges teams must overcome:
1: Everyone is scattered: Whether its key stakeholders working from home, socially distant colleagues on-site, or end customers receiving delivery or take-out, the traditional flow of communication required for food service has been disrupted. Navigating these changes and processes requires more communication than ever before, but coordinating unplanned work - sometimes across buildings or area codes - cannot be addressed by traditional tools like two-way radios and phones. Relay combines the power of a phone’s software platform and 4G LTE connectivity with the push-to-talk simplicity of a two-way radio.
- Range: The immediacy of communication is critical to working through the unplanned nature of food service, and the time it takes to make a call or text - and hope for an answer- is impractical when it comes to serving your end customer. While the range of a phone helps mitigate distanced operations, the arduous nature of its use is counter-productive. Walkie talkies have been a common tool to get teams in touch quickly, but they lack the range and flexibility to connect groups beyond the limitations of a radio signal.
- Dispatch management: As operations are consolidated, dispatch management and call centers are inundated with communication that must be addressed quickly and efficiently. “This is one of the most important evolutions we’ve been told was needed in food service,” said Barbara Sharnak, Relay’s Sr. Director of Business Development. “The ability for teams to communicate directly from their PTT devices to a dashboard through which an individual can see, track and save the messages that they must respond to, and talk back directly through their computer.”
- Groups and Individual Communication: Given the frenetic pace of food service operations, traditional communication channels are often clogged and overrun with chatter. While it’s not unusual for teams to try and parse these conversations over a few openly-accessible channels, Relay provides unlimited group and one-on-one channels to optimize for flexible and custom conversations.
2: PPE makes operations difficult: Gloves and masks have been a part of food service for longer than most industries, but widespread adoption of these protective elements, along with plexiglass barriers, make communication more difficult. Hands-free talk and the ability to reach others reliably and clearly across new barriers is crucial. Not to mention the need for easy disinfection of any tool used for this purpose. Relay’s voice-first interface and easily wearable design provide a simple means to talk, and water resistance ensures cleaning is thorough.
3. You need to save money: For all of the challenges and changes that need to be addressed in the current environment, there is little budget to solve them. All businesses have been dramatically affected by the economy and every expense faces a magnifying glass through which it must prove a return on investment. Communication tools are traditionally notorious for costing a lot of money and having very few - if any - ways for operators to show that these dollars come back to benefit the bottom line.
Relay breaks that model, providing a more capable product at a lower cost than the phone or walkie talkie incumbents - as well as offering operational analytics that allow teams to show management workflow KPIs and track improvement over time.
- Cost: Annual cell phone bills exceed thousands of dollars, while professional-grade walkie talkie budgets often run into six or seven figures. Relay combines the power and ease of each with a $99 per unit hardware cost and $8 monthly fee.
- ROI: Relay’s software platform allows teams to track common workflows and commands such as quality checks and fulfillment and access reports through which they can see the efficiency of those processes over time. In addition to offering more reliable communication through these workflows, Relay allows teams to manage and report on the ultimate metric - impact to the bottom line.
To navigate the new reality of business operations, Relay is the optimal and most affordable tool for reliable and efficient team communication amid PPE challenges. Learn more about Relay and sign up to receive free demo devices at relaygo.com.