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We are finally (hopefully) on the other side of COVID-19 and have adjusted our normal restaurant operations with new safeguards in place. To get a pulse on how they are faring, many QSR managers have considered resuming their mystery shopper program. Restaurants are finally getting the kind of traffic that used to be taken for granted. But things are not quite the same.

The effects of COVID-19 on fast-casual dining have forced substantial changes to the customer experience and how satisfaction is measured. Incorporating social distancing, frequent curbside pickup, and increased sanitizing measures has necessitated a more complex mystery shopping practice. Before you decide to begin a modified mystery shopper program, look at the data touchpoints you already have and ask yourself 3 important questions:

  1. What improvements can you enact based on what you see?

Most video recording programs can track a customer’s footsteps upon entering your restaurant, interacting with staff, and exiting. The data you glean from each step of this customer behavior can, in effect, make any customer a bit of a secret shopper.

Key takeaway:  Ensure you opt for a video program that is automatically stored in the cloud for future reference.

  1. Would you be a return customer?

Get more intelligence out of your managed video surveillance. Experience the worker-customer relationship firsthand. Watch the interaction and put yourself in the role of customer. Is the person at the register greeting the guest based on your brand guidelines such as uniform compliance? Are your tables clean and ready for use? Is the trash overflowing? Are the signs in the drive-thru visible and standing upright?

Key takeaway:  Be certain the video surveillance system you use can analyze the many points of data captured. Extra points if it integrates with your POS software.

  1.     Do customers feel you are taking their health and safety seriously?

Utilize the extra measures incorporated in health and safety audits due to COVID-19 to easily measure against actual customer interactions.

Key takeaway: Make sure your current auditing results drive staff to promote a healthy workplace. The best auditing programs will produce actionable directives for staff that flow down to the customer.

Mystery Shopper Program Via Restaurant Audits

Reopening your restaurant has no doubt brought you equal parts of both relief and concern. While it’s great to be open again, the customer expects an improved experience from many different channels, such as direct delivery, curbside pickup, and dining in options, with each of these channels requiring different levels of sanitizing and safety. Each customer type needs to be understood and represented as managers begin testing scenarios with mystery shoppers, or even with actual customers. Make sure your software is robust, agile, and delivers clear metrics for you to create a workplace culture driven by continuous improvement.

Envysion video and audit solutions combine surveillance video, audio, and transactional business data with our intuitive managed video platform giving you actionable insights to protect and grow your business.  

To learn more about how our video and/or audit solutions can increase your customer satisfaction, schedule a demo.