There has been a wait for a table just about every night since Tico, the latest restaurant along 14th Street NW, opened its doors earlier this month. The high demand is a positive sign for an establishment vying for patrons in one of the city’s newly flourishing corridors.
It also means Operations Director Steve Uhr needs to keep diners cycling through the restaurant at a steady clip. For that, Uhr turns to OpenTable, an online reservation system, that allows him to optimize seating so that as many people as possible are served throughout the evening.
Technology “is being used more frequently. There are systems that have been around for a while,” Uhr said, but “they’re more efficient now, they’re faster. They’re more affordable, so I think they’re being used more.”
Indeed, technology plays an increasing role in the day-to-day functions of restaurants, stores and hotels. Software collects reams of information about customers — what you eat, what you buy, the size of your bill — that merchants use to determine how to best serve customers and increase their profits in the process.
For evidence that retail and hospitality technology is a hot market, consider a pair of high-profile acquisitions in just the past month.