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A famous restaurant was getting bad reviews. The reason why will shock you

A famous restaurant was getting bad reviews. The reason why will shock you
photo courtesy of shutterstock

Wow. I'm all for technology, but this is ridiculous. This story has been making the rounds on the Web, and going viral. And while it hasn't been substantiated, if it's true, then we may have a technology problem on our hands.

A staple of the New York restaurant scene (nobody knows exactly which one) had a mystery on its hands. Online reviews were constantly complaining about the slow service, even though the restaurant had taken steps to speed up service.

What was the restaurant to do? They hired an outside company to diagnose the problem, and fingers were immediately pointed at the staff and their training.

Changes were made, more staff was hired, and still the reviews were poor. But it wasn't just this one restaurant, it was multiple restaurants in the area that were getting bad reviews online and complaints about the service.

The outside company then suggested that the restaurant look at old footage from security cameras to compare service then to the service now. Maybe that would diagnose the problem.

It was worth a shot. So the restaurant searched through storage to find some archived film, but they didn't find any tapes. They did, however, find some of the old recording devices that each held a tape inside, dating back to 2004.

The restaurant then did a side-by-side comparison of 45 transactions from July 1, 2004, and July 3, 2014. And the results are absolutely astounding.

In 2004, the service was as follows, according to the restaurant:

  • Customers walk in.
  • They get seated and are given menus, out of 45 customers 3 request to be seated elsewhere.
  • Customers on average spend 8 minutes before closing the menu to show they are ready to order.
  • Waiters shows up almost instantly takes the order.
  • Food starts getting delivered within 6 minutes, obviously the more complex items take way longer.
  • Out of 45 customers 2 sent items back that where too cold we assume (given they were not steak we assume they wanted the item heated up more).
  • Waiters keep an eye out for their tables so they can respond quickly if the customer needs something.
  • Customers are done, check delivered, and within 5 minutes they leave.

The average customer experience time from walking in the door to walking out of the door was 1 hour, 5 minutes.

Let's compare that to the findings from 2014. The restaurant said the service is as follows:

  • Customers walk in.
  • Customers get seated and are given menus, out of 45 customers 18 requested to be seated elsewhere.
  • Before even opening the menu they take their phones out, some are taking photos while others are simply doing something else on their phone (sorry we have no clue what they are doing and do not monitor customer WIFI activity).
  • 7 out of the 45 customers had waiters come over right away, they showed them something on their phone and spent an average of 5 minutes of the waiter's time. Given this is recent footage, we asked the waiters about this and they explained those customers had a problem connecting to the WIFI and demanded the waiters try to help them.
  • Finally the waiters are walking over to the table to see what the customers would like to order. The majority have not even opened the menu and ask the waiter to wait a bit.
  • Customer opens the menu, places their hands holding their phones on top of it and continue doing whatever on their phone.
  • Waiter returns to see if they are ready to order or have any questions. The customer asks for more time.
  • Finally they are ready to order.
  • Total average time from when the customer was seated until they placed their order 21 minutes.
  • Food starts getting delivered within 6 minutes, obviously the more complex items take way longer.
  • 26 out of 45 customers spend an average of 3 minutes taking photos of the food.
  • 14 out of 45 customers take pictures of each other with the food in front of them or as they are eating the food. This takes on average another 4 minutes as they must review and sometimes retake the photo.
  • 9 out of 45 customers sent their food back to reheat. Obviously if they didn't pause to do whatever on their phone the food wouldn't have gotten cold.
  • 27 out of 45 customers asked their waiter to take a group photo. 14 of those requested the waiter retake the photo as they were not pleased with the first photo. On average this entire process between the chit chatting and reviewing the photo taken added another 5 minutes and obviously caused the waiter not to be able to take care of other tables he/she was serving.
  • Given in most cases the customers are constantly busy on their phones it took an average of 20 minutes more from when they were done eating until they requested a check. Furthermore once the check was delivered it took 15 minutes longer than 10 years ago for them to pay and leave.
  • 8 out of 45 customers bumped into other customers or in one case a waiter (texting while walking) as they were either walking in or out of the Restaurant.

In 2014, the average time for the customer experience was 1 hour, 55 minutes. That's a 50-minute increase of service time over 10 years.

So, what do you think? Is it the restaurant's fault, or has technology enslaved us already? Let me know in the comments below!

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Source: craigslist
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