Whether it’s a cost cutting effort or an attempt to make the ordering process easier, more food order kiosks will soon be lining up in 1,000 Wendy’s restaurants, helping them to join the McDonald’s and Paneras across the country in allowing eaters everywhere to walk up and order without having to deal with a cashier taking their order. While this may somewhat come as a welcome addition for the patrons of these restaurants who either aren’t looking to wait in line behind the family of four with kids who can’t figure out what they want to eat, it’s also potentially somewhat of a concern.
That’s because, despite the fast food industry claiming that the addition of kiosks allow for employees to focus more on food prep than on having to take orders, if they are successful enough it potentially means that cashiers are no longer necessary it also makes the position expendable. Something which could potentially expand in other areas, such as cooking the food and delivering it after it’s done.
And, if everything is automated, a location would likely only need to have two workers at any given time who would be engineers and possibly janitors (assuming that the locations didn’t just set up an automatic cleaning system to help keep their locations hygienic. Something which would also mean that there would be a large decrease in the amount of employment opportunities in an industry which, as of 2013, offered jobs to 3,653,168 US workers.
Of course, this doesn’t mean that kiosks aren’t a benefit towards ordering. After all, if we’re out for fast food, we’re not necessarily paying for the service as we’re trying to just get in and out before we have to run out to wherever else it is that we need to be. Not to mention, they typically provide a greater amount of information regarding the nutrition facts than what’s displayed on the menu.
But, it also means that with employment opportunities likely on the decline, it’s time to prepare for the possibility that those jobs won’t be available while also recognizing where the hiring opportunities will be (engineering), especially if you happened to hear where Mark Cuban believes most of the jobs in the future will come from.
Fortunately, this will still make ordering from those restaurants all the easier and without the human error of messed up orders falling on the cashier’s shoulders, so, if you’re a big Wendy’s fan, you’ll soon be able to get their square patties in your belly sooner. Not to mention, it also gives us more time to prepare for a different career if we’re also worried about our current jobs in the future.
Oh, and it also means we’re another step closer to SKynet, so, um, we’ve got that going for us as well.
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