- Derek Engles
Competitive Set - Differentiating Ourselves from the Pack
All businesses have competitive sets: a comparative operation by which an analysis of business health and progress can be established. While developing the Virtual Manager App, I was constantly analyzing my competitive set: the plethora of existing restaurant management apps that are often downloaded but rarely used. I downloaded, tested, deleted and downloaded again. While I found a lot of really interesting and cutting edge technologies out there, there were some glaring issues that I wanted to conquer.
1. Intellectual Property. Corporations are reluctant to let new software systems integrate themselves into the ecosystem of company finances. Purchasing patterns, inventory levels, employee data and personal information are just a few examples of the information that no organization wants to release, let alone having an outside agency collect and sell it. I wanted a management app with a back-end system to let managers just open a browser window and send data to each employee directly to their app. The fanciest scheduling app du jour certainly looks great and is ostensibly revolutionary, but if you cannot protect company data, comply with union employee management practices and execute that system across a large organization, its just another fancy piece of software that lacks practicality. Keep it safe, keep it simple.
2. Manager Training. There is already a lot of manager training in your organization, right? So why would you want to spend countless hours getting your supervisory staff up to speed on integrated software that may not accomplish the vital tasks? Virtual Manager is easy to use, compatible with legacy software systems like MS Office, and just does the things that restaurant managers need to do: it gets information into employees hands instantly, no matter where they are. Bigger isn't better, better is better.
3. Who is using these? Fast food, sandwich & coffee shops and a lot of smaller, more casual settings are utilizing applications that streamline management tasks. Things get more complex when a restaurant has 100 front of the house employees and 4 managers. The basic essentials become difficult to execute with such large staffing levels, and the corporate culture gets off track when everyone isn't on the same page. A poll of restaurants in Las Vegas reveals a lack of technological infusions into the management culture, a rising need to reduce the vast paper waste and a better, easier systems to train and communicate with staff members. Brilliant at the basics is the culture we are facilitating!
In the first quarter of 2020, the Virtual Manager App will be ready to streamline your restaurant operations and increase your corporate sustainability.