Thursday, March 16th, 2017 .


Using a paper floor plan has been common in the restaurant industry for a long time, and many software applications have incorporated spatial floor plan concepts into their designs.  Floor plans are deceptively complex to use, however, and can cost you time and money in ways you may not expect.  Waitlist Me CEO, Brian Hutchins, was recently featured in an article published on RMagazine, and goes into detail about 5 main reasons that floor plans are more complicated than they seem.

 

1) Key information is scattered in different directions

2) Comparing apples and oranges is difficult

3) Tables are static, but demand is not

4) Bad decisions lead to unhappy customers and frustrated employees

5) Measuring and improving results is difficult

 

Read  the article on RMagazine for all the details or watch the Waitlist Me video on table section management.

 

Monday, October 15th, 2018 .

Did you know there’s a way to make the world better—to make your community better—just by giving your restaurant a tiny upgrade? We’re talking about making your business more accessible and welcoming for guests with a variety of needs and abilities.

The best part is you can started today, right here and right now, with a few minutes of your time. Here’s how a simple app called Waitlist Me can help you upgrade your restaurant’s accessibility, no contractors necessary.

Let customers wait where they’re most comfortable

Some guests need more space. Others need a comfortable place to sit or room to walk or air conditioning. When your restaurant is jammed with customers jockeying for waiting space, you don’t leave them with many options.

Waitlist Me changes that. The app sets customers free from whatever space you’ve set aside for your queue. They can relax in the car, they can explore the area, or they can kill time in a more comfortable environment—all without losing their place in line.

Notify waiting guests by text

We’ve all been there: standing in a too-loud vestibule wondering if there’s a better way to get guests’ attention without shouting, relying on vibrating devices, or requiring them to crowd around the hostess stand.

It turns out there is. Waitlist Me lets you send customers a text when their table is ready. That means they can get the word ASAP in a way that works best for them.

Allow guests to make reservations (or join the waitlist) online

Speaking on the phone doesn’t work well for everyone, which is why it is important to have simple options for guests to add themselves to the waitlist or send reservation requests online. That way, all your customers can jump on line from wherever they are, regardless of their abilities.

The add yourself web widget is one more feature that makes life easier for everyone. It’s simple to pop it on to your website and allow your customers to send requests from their computer or phone. Then you just approve them in the Waitlist Me app when they pop up.

Keep track of every customer request

Anyone with special needs, from wheelchair-accessible seating to dietary restrictions, gets to used to repeating themselves. However, just because it’s the norm doesn’t mean it’s not a hassle. Impress these customers with your ability to asks once and remember always with Waitlist Me’s notes feature.

It’s simple for your host to access and add details to, and because the app can sync to multiple devices, employees who are preparing tables and running the kitchen can keep track of these requests, too.

Give more accurate wait time estimates

The most frustrating part of waiting in line is when the ETA keeps changing. You and your staff know this better than anyone! From stink eyes to toe tapping to the constant “how much longer?” refrain from hungry guests.

Our app helps you do away with all the fuss. Waitlist Me gives wait estimates and helps your team make more accurate wait times by seeing actual waits next to quoted times for each customer. Plus, the customer waitlist view feature lets guests check on their wait time from their smartphone. That gives them visibility into the waitlist so they don’t have to ask several times about the wait and can be sure to be nearby when it is close to their turn.

Monday, August 6th, 2018 .

Did you know you can add a button to your Facebook page to take reservations or appointments? Allowing customers to book directly from social media is easy, and a great way to increase bookings.

Start by logging into your Waitlist Me account and copying the unique link for your hosted Web Widget. You can find this at www.waitlist.me > Account > Settings > Add Yourself. The link will be at the top of the page.

Next, go to your business’s Facebook page. Choose the Add a Button option on the right.

 

Choose Book with you, and then Book Now.

 

Select the Link to Website option, enter your Waitlist Me link in the pop up, press Save and then Finish. That’s it! You now have your very own reservation (or appointment) button on Facebook.

 

Monday, September 15th, 2014 .

Being sick is no fun for anyone. And when you are sick, one of the top things on your mind is how to get better as soon as possible. It isn’t surprising that having to wait to talk to a physician can be a frustrating experience, but ProHealth Care Medical Associates found that using Waitlist to give patients a better sense of their wait made patients and physicians happier.

prohealth image

 

ProHealth Care Medical Associates is an award-winning regional specialty and primary care system with services throughout Southeastern Wisconsin. As part of the ProHealth Care program, the system has an integrated network of closely aligned independent physicians. Services encompass nearly all aspects of health care and includes hospitals, medical clinics, home care and hospice, integrative medicine, well-being and fitness centers, and more.

The centers have eight urgent care facilities within a 25-mile radius and see patients on a walk-in basis, which means wait times to see doctors can take anywhere from 60 to 90 minutes.

“One of the things we were hearing from our patients is that they weren’t happy with our wait times,” said Kelly Tolson, Director of Operations at ProHealth Care. “During cold and flu season, it can be anywhere from a 90 minute to two hour wait. Two hours is unacceptable.”

Tolson and ProHealth site leader, Maureen Sensiba, were looking for a way to make wait times easier to manage for patients, when they were approached by a patient who had seen the NoshList wait list app in use at a local restaurant.

“One of our patients had been added to a waitlist and notified when their table was ready at a Red Robin restaurant, and she said it was an awesome feature,” Sensiba said. “She raved about it. So afterward, I did some research on my own and contacted NoshList to see how we could make it work for our situation.”

The customer was specifically pleased with how the wait list app gave her the ability to shop while she waited for her table at Red Robin. That also caught the attention of Tolson and Sensiba, since it would be nice for patients to not have to be constrained to the waiting area.

Before getting started, the app had to be shown to the company’s patient experience officer and corporate compliance officer attorney to ensure the app wasn’t in violation of any patient privacy issues. Because the app only shows patient initials, it does not violate HIPPA rules or any other privacy rule, and Tolson was given the ability to then launch the app at the Medical Associates Brookfield, Wisc. location.

“Brookfield was a great place to start because it’s a small community. People could go home, have lunch or run errands while they waited to be seen by a doctor and get back in a short amount of time,” Tolson said. “It has worked so well that we have expanded it to another location and have plans to roll it out to the remaining six within the next six months.”

How it works

When ProHealth first started using NoshList, it was more popularly used as an iPad app, so they had to be a little creative in getting to fit their needs for an urgent care waitlist from a computer. Tolson and Sensiba realized that they could customize the public waitlist web page and the Add Yourself feature that restaurants normally use to allow diners to add themselves to a list, and they adapted this functionality for their staff to enter the information.

The patient names are put into a computer once they arrive at the center, and they can check their place in line from a phone or computer. When other patients look at the waitlist to determine where they are in line, only the patients’ initials are visible. Then when it is a patient’s turn, the ProHealth staff uses the regular waitlist view to trigger the text and call notifications and remove people from the list.

Since that time, NoshList has added the ability to do everything in one place in the browser, and early adopters like ProHealth Care that started using the system in new ways and sending feedback helped drive these product improvements.

“It was very smart how Tolson and Sensiba figured out how to use the NoshList public waitlist page, which was designed for other purposes, to serve as a simple entry form that could be used by multiple people on computers,” said NoshList CEO, Craig Walker. “We were all very impressed at NoshList, and have been building more and more improvements into our service to make it better for cases like these and for solving the wait problem everywhere.“

While the facility operators have yet to determine how the app has impacted wait times, customers appear to be happy with the solution.

“I don’t know if their wait times have decreased, but patients are more satisfied because we are being more respectful of their time,” Sensiba said. “We know they have other things they could be doing and we’re giving them an opportunity to do those things if there is a long wait.”

The physicians also are happier.

“We expected the patients would appreciate the new waitlist options, but we didn’t anticipate that the physicians would also be happier, because the patients are happier when they get into the room,” Tolson said. “That has been a very nice surprise.”

Monday, March 29th, 2021 .

FACTORY GIRL is a breakfast & lunch restaurant in Amsterdam and in Berlin.  The concept of FACTORY GIRL was founded by Sofia D Sözen in Berlin in 2009 to become a hip and stylish culture serving healthy breakfast & lunch all day long. The atmosphere bursts with warmth, friendliness, coolness and charm. FACTORY GIRL is an exciting and homey culinary experience built on values of being cruelty-free to animals. 

“We serve extremely rich, luscious vegan & vegetarian food with beautiful presentations,” says Sözen. “We change the menu often to keep the excitement alive and the ingredients we use are mostly organic.” 

The concept of FACTORY GIRL is a place where you can begin your day or take a break in style or just drop by for a coffee or quick Vegan Coco Anjela treat. FACTORY GIRL believes in a healthy lifestyle with a planet-friendly attitude. That’s why the restaurant provides daily fresh, healthy vegan and vegetarian food with an infinite amount of ingredients, spices and herbs. 

“We try to create distinctive recipes that still have conventional tastes. And above all, FACTORY GIRL welcomes everyone with different preferences!” says Sözen.

There are a lot of dishes that are customer favorites, but a couple that stand out are the Vegan Dessert Coco Anjela, Shakshuka, and Gluten Free Pancake and Benedict. The menu contains many options, so it provides a great way for guests to create their own meal. 

“We have a lot of caring and love for our brand,” says Sözen. “We enjoy our work as a team. We play good music, provide a high level of service, and make fine and healthy food in a friendly environment. We support kindness and we love animals as much as we love bringing people together.” 

FACTORY GIRL’s commitment to quality service and spotless management was what originally led them to try Waitlist Me.  When the restaurant was busy, they would have to write down the names of the waiting people and it wasn’t easy to keep things in order.  They were having difficulties due to the long wait times.

“Waitlist Me allowed us to communicate with our guests by letting them wait from anywhere then telling them it’s their turn with an SMS,” says Sözen. “Our guests can check in online, they can see the wait times and we can keep everyone informed. It’s a new way to not wait in line. We can also control the number of customers inside at any given time. Waitlist Me lets us create an awesome customer waiting experience.”

FACTORY GIRL’s previous system of using paper was also throwing off their internal system and processes. Often guests had to wait too long, especially on weekend nights when things could get chaotic. Switching to Waitlist Me gave better tools for their management and team to help run things more smoothly when things got busy.

“We are now able to monitor our lines in real-time,” says Sözen. “We can see how different locations compare, the number of guests waiting, current wait times and other metrics that help to empower our team and streamline how our business operates.”

FACTORY GIRL’s flexibility in trying new things has been part of their ability to keep the personality of their brand consistent as they continue to make improvements within their core concept.  They are driven by the passion for making people happy and making strong connections with their customers and within their team.  These values have also helped them through the past year, which has been particularly challenging for restaurants because of COVID.  In their Amsterdam location they adapted and modified their service to allow for pick up. “FACTORY GIRL has strong founding pillars,” says Sözen, “We prefer to re-form ad re-sculpt our projects and plans for the current situation and needs. People still want to eat good food, and we always try our best to please our customers.”

Locations:

FACTORY GIRL Berlin – Auguststraße 29c, 10119 Berlin, Germany

FACTORY GIRL Berlin – Saenredamstraat 32, 1072 CH Amsterdam, Netherlands