Worldpay’s research underscores the value of slick service in the competitive hospitality sector, from the moment the diner walks in to when they settle the bill. The study coincides with the launch of Worldpay’s latest payments technology, which helps restaurants to alleviate the payment heartburn by streamlining bill splitting and calculating gratuities with ease. Worldpay Total Hospitality enables seamless transactions from till to table. Servers are able to call up the check as soon as the customer requests it directly from the card machine giving restaurateurs the time to serve more customers, more effectively.
Chris Crang Vice President Marketing UK and Europe, Worldpay Inc. said: “Whilst it may seem obvious that no one likes to be kept waiting, our research will certainly give restaurants food for thought on how they respond and adapt to evolving consumer expectations. Payment stress can taint the entire dining experience, and with so few diners considering service to be efficient, there is a huge opportunity for savvy operators to differentiate their offering and win over loyal consumers through a more seamless customer centric service”
To illustrate the stress that an inefficient dining experience can cause, Worldpay set up The Stresstaurant, a pop-up restaurant designed to challenge customers with dire table service, ranging from wrong orders to late bills. With so much going wrong during the filmed lunch – from phantom Champagne orders to missing tips and card machines taking an age to arrive – the Stresstaurant truly challenged the British ability to keep calm and carry on.
Faring worst on the stressometers were the millennial snowflakes brought to meltdown by slow card machines and miscalculated bills. Older generations by contrast kept their cool, despite the cocktail of errors sent their way.
Diner Barry Jones, 21 from Mill Hill said: “As a stressful experience that was a seven out of ten. Waiting for a bill when we need to be somewhere else does get me stressed and can put a real downer on the rest of the day. Once I’ve finished a meal I just want to get going – bad service at that point makes me want to walk away and never come back.”
Nick Lander, restaurant critic and former owner of L’Escargot, one of London’s top restaurants said: “One of the biggest changes facing the restaurant industry today is the style of service, as time-pressures have increasingly become a factor in where consumers choose to eat. I was shocked to learn that just six percent of consumers find service is generally quick and efficient when they eat out. Restaurants shouldn’t underestimate the impact the small details have on the smooth running of a busy service – both for the customer and themselves. There’s no excuse for bad cooking but it’s the way that you’re looked after that makes the difference between a good meal, a great meal and an unforgettable meal.”