Well, touch screens maybe. I was trying to meet an acquaintance yesterday (Sunday) and until he got out of church, I decided to hang out at McDo (as the French call it) for a milk shake and a very very rare (rural France) WiFi connection.
Located near a major supermarket on the outskirts of Angouleme, I have been to that location a number of times since we moved here three years ago. But not since winter. I was so surprised to see that you cannot order live with a real person anymore, it's touchscreen only. It should NOT be a surprise, automation of menial tasks are coming. A. because I think society as a whole will be more wanting to get paid more than minimum wage and B. corporations (who are NOT all that evil in my eyes) are under pressure from you (and your pension fund manager) to deliver ever higher returns. Nobody ever talks about that actually....
So what's a better saving than to lay off those 12.00/hr college students, who take your very simple order at a fast food resto. The surprise to me is that it happens in France already. A country where you get every excuse in the book, why there is no free WiFi at a restaurant. A country where in Grade 9 kids still need that tiny blackboard in school instead of an iPad, because "neat hand writing is the future", as if you could fit anything more than two words on that thing.
Anyway. I digress.
Admittedly I was hesitant myself at first , having just gotten the hang of Victoria's iPad over the last few months, but it's a really cool and smart set up. Multiple language choices, clear images of the product you are ordering, all the options you want and most importantly that UPSELL. While the touchscreen won't ask you "Do you want fries with that?", at every turn you make, the machine suggests something for you to add. A cool trick, that's virtually impossible to make a minimum wage worker do.
It was great watch the touch screens from my table while wasting time waiting for my appointment, I witnessed many confused faces and even more families who simply let their kids take over the ordering process.
And you know what that means.....over ordering, and super sized meals at every turn, as kids are in control now. Yes, another generation gap is happening I think, just like the remote control for me? How easy was that to understand, whereas my father would still get up from his sofa to change the channel for the longest time.
Overall a smart move for the corporation and in turn, you, the happy shareholders. Shall we talk about this now? Stop vilifying "evil" companies, while you are eager to get a fat pension check or high return on your mutual fund investments. Anyway.....
By the way, on a Sunday in rural France, McDonald's is the busiest place around. You should see the crowds. And with wages like here in France, it should not have surprised me that it became a top priority to automate jobs.
THE NEW ORDERING SYSTEM
YOU CAN STILL PAY WITH CASH, BUT IT CONFUSES THE STAFF
SO COOL TO WATCH
THESE KIDS DID ALL THE ORDERING
A BUSY PLACE