Lancer Worldwide has teamed up with Miso Robotics – the firm behind the robotic kitchen assistant – to create a fully automated beverage dispenser for quick service restaurants.
The dispenser will integrate with a restaurant’s POS system and come equipped with a guided workflow for employees to ensure accurate order completion synced with driver and customer arrival times – all while automatically pouring drinks and advancing beverages to enable an easy grab-and-go format for staff.
The pair believes the solution comes at just the right time for the QSR industry given ongoing labor shortages and the need to improve the customer service experience.
Some QSRs have seen drive-thru sales jump to as high as 90% of orders during the pandemic, yet this has created challenges in terms of speed and efficiency. Total average drive-thru times slowed down by almost 30 seconds last year as a result.
Miso has already seen operators use its robotic systems to accelerate recovery and meet demand and it believes beverage automation in the next big step for commercial kitchens.
Jake Brewer, chief strategy officer at Miso Robotics, said it was an area of order completion that has long been plagued with inefficiency as workers look to navigate compact, fast-paced kitchens and unpredictable order volume during shifts.
He said Lancer – which is part of the Hoshizaki Corporation – was the ideal partner to help it knock down the obstacles that the market face.
“Lancer has a legacy of stand-out industry quality and shares in our vision for beverage innovation and futuristic design. Order fulfilment is a major factor for customer satisfaction and operators can’t afford to have a beverage left behind when a delivery driver or customer visits.
“We are extremely excited to create a product that will not only make the lives of those working in commercial kitchens better, but will be a game changer for the industry as a whole to deliver a world-class customer experience.”
The new automated beverage dispenser will integrate with the POS system and the guided workflow will ensure accurate order completion synced with driver and customer arrival times.
The machine will be able to automatically pour drinks and advance beverages to enable an easy grab-and-go format for staff.
When an order comes in, the connected approach will allow the beverage dispenser to ‘know’ the beverage needs associated with the order and will automatically issue the appropriate sized cup, begin pouring and seal the drink.
The entire process is timed to complete as close as possible with the time the meal/remainder of the order is ready for hand-off to the customer or delivery driver.
Brad Davis, director of applied technologies at Lancer Worldwide, said: “The quick service brands we work with every day are well aware of what their challenges are – they know they need more efficiency, and they know there is new technology out there that could make it possible.
“Miso Robotics will help us bring all the right pieces together for an innovative design that makes automation, connectivity, and intelligence possible for operators. We are excited to collaborate with them to bring this concept to life, and into the hands of operators around the world.”