Coupled with the acceleration of off-premise dining, operators continue to utilize limited time offers (LTOs) to drive sales as service models shift around the globe.
Commentary by Rocky Rockwell, Corporate Executive Chef, Alto-Shaam
Restaurants and fast-food outlets in particular are using LTOs to constantly refresh their menus and keep their customers engaged. A change in season, a major sporting fixture, holiday, or even the election of a new government, have all given rise to special menus and products available for only a limited period.
Managing a limited-time-offer menu, both from a corporate and individual store level, has its challenges. The greatest challenge is one of logistics. All of the merchandising has to be delivered and in-store ahead of the launch; staff have to be specially trained; promotional signage installed; and cash registers and point-of-sale materials programmed and prepared. Then, of course, there comes the most important aspect of all: the product.
Achieve Greater Menu Consistency
One of the biggest headaches that all operators face is how to ensure consistency throughout their restaurants — consistency in terms of coordinating the timing of any LTO launch and consistency in the taste and quality of the products they are serving. Traditionally, this has involved coordinating the training of hundreds of staff in the programming — often manually — of new recipes into their oven controls with all of the difficulties this creates, not to mention the costs.
Today, however, new technology is making life easier. Alto-Shaam has launched ChefLinc™, a cloud-based, remote oven management system, available to use with Vector® H Series Multi-Cook Ovens.
ChefLinc provides foodservice operators complete control of their equipment, menus and business from anywhere they are — increasing efficiency and consistency across multiple locations. This not only eliminates the likelihood of keystroke error, but also the need for traveling to manually program recipes into ovens with USB, update oven settings or pull real-time service and operational data. These features further support social distancing and the reduction of unnecessary travel as the foodservice industry shifts to its new normal.
LTOs remain a popular feature in the foodservice industry and, managed well, can deliver substantial returns. Restaurants, it seems, will continue to promote LTOs for as long as customers demand variety from their restaurant providers. With innovations like ChefLinc, operators are put in total control of their equipment from anywhere they are, with intuitive recipe management and data driven insights that enable streamlined processes and greater consistency.
Discover how ChefLinc can help streamline your processes and build in greater consistency by visiting