EZ-Chow Vice President, Operations & Merchant Success, Brian Moore, started with EZ-Chow in May of 2020, bringing with him a very diverse background of mortgage banking, franchising, operations, customers experiences and the QSR industry.
As we look to the future, it is important to understand who makes up the talented team at EZ-Chow…let’s learn more about Brian Moore.
Q: Tell us about your background?
I graduated with a degree in Finance and Real Estate and worked in that industry for 13 years as a mortgage banker. I moved into the food service industry when I became a small-business owner and opened a franchise restaurant in 2014. I parlayed that ownership and operations experience into a corporate role with Papa John’s International where I managed the Voice-of-the-Customer survey program for North America operations. My work at Papa John’s led to my connection with Mo Sloan, CEO of EZ-Chow, and brought me to this point.
Q: How has your career evolved over the years?
The entrepreneurial spirit has always lived within my chosen careers – typically some element of risk involved with every one. From commission sales, to small business owner, to a start-up like EZ-Chow. As I’ve moved from one career path to another, I’ve found myself leaning more heavily into those values of entrepreneurship with every change while drawing upon lessons learned from each one previously. There is inevitably a risk/reward nature to entrepreneurship with some variable of the “unknown” lingering, often times daily. I prefer the challenge of making it work to a desk job where I am expected to wash-rinse-repeat.
Q: How has your experience from Papa John’s helped you view the Voice-of-the-Customer (those using your technology to order)?
Your customers will tell you what is good, what needs work, or what needs to be buried – you simply have to listen. All the product development and internal testing in the world can’t tell you how good your product is. Until you get real, candid feedback from the end consumer you’re just guessing. Ask for feedback and be open to everything your told. THEN – you have to take action. Customers want to know they’ve been heard. More importantly, they want to know you listened and their feedback was taken seriously. You can make a customer happy by just sending them a response to their message, but you can make them a partner and an advocate for you product by making changes based on their feedback. Respecting and listening to your customer is all the same, whether it is a new pizza on the menu or new restaurant technology.
Q: What led you to EZ-Chow?
I was connected to Mo (a former Papa John’s employee) by a mutual peer, also formerly with Papa John’s. EZ-Chow was closing their first round to investors and was positioned for growth of their POS-integrated online ordering platform. COVID-19 literally shut down the entire world 4 days later with shelter-in-place orders….! The restaurant industry, as a whole, was changing right before our eyes and I saw an opportunity to become a difference maker for restaurants and their operators. They needed a way to reach their customers, keep their doors open (if only virtually), and keep their employees earning pay checks. Leaving a stable corporate job in the wake of a global pandemic to work for a start-up in a “new normal economy” none of us had experienced before doesn’t seem ideal (and it isn’t…) – however, I interpreted it as timing and opportunity.
Q: What is your role at EZ-Chow?
I am the liaison to both our partners and the EZ-Chow development team; bridging the language and operational gap between the “techs” and the restaurants. I lead all our Operational efforts which include the onboarding, installation, and activation of new accounts, new customer training, customer success/account management, Help Desk support, identifying and scoping platform enhancements, and Quality Assurance testing.
Q: How important is data and insights for EZ-Chow in viewing your partner needs?
Despite having invaluable experience in the restaurant and service industry, nobody at EZ-Chow is on the front lines. We understand what day-to-day may look like for an Operator, but we can’t know for sure what they need without their help. We don’t want to just solve the problem WE think they might be dealing with – we want to partner with our customers to build solutions that are specific and applicable.
Q: What are 3 restaurant and hospitality trends you see for 2023 and beyond?
- Doing more with less. Labor shortages are real and they are everywhere. It isn’t enough to ask your current employees to carry the extra load and think you’ll survive. That approach isn’t sustainable. Brands that succeed will look for and find alternative solutions to a problem all business owners are faced with solving.
- More specialized marketing and creative customer retention strategies. Everything action a customer takes provides a data point way beyond standard demographics. Loyalty programs can do so much more with the data they are receiving. It is not a coincidence your favorite item to order online around dinner time on Friday just happens to be on special this Friday night if you place an order….
- Tech, tech, tech. Restaurants will continue to evolve and find ways to solve concerns around the above two trends through the use of technology. The more “all-in-one” a solution can be for the restaurant operator, the better. In other words, restaurants will gravitate towards technology that can solve a multitude of their needs as opposed to having to find a different solution for each problem they face. Their time is too limited and too valuable. They have real people waiting to be served at their counters or tables and need tech that can help them do that more efficiently.
Q: What technology from EZ-Chow excites you and why?
Our self-service kiosk has just launched and I am excited for what this will do for Quick Service restaurants. However, I’m even more excited for our next venture – table top ordering for Casual Dining concepts. Another solution to the labor shortage, this will allow guests to easily place their own order through a device that remains on the table. Guests no longer have to wait for a busy server and servers don’t have to stand idle at a table for 3 minutes, writing down an order and then another 1-2 minutes entering it into the point-of-sale. Picture yourself at a sports bar watching a game – you place food and drink orders when you’re ready, not when you’re able to flag down the server. Kitchens receive orders faster, tables turn faster, customers don’t feel ignored, servers become more efficient to interact more with their tables and earn better tips.
Q: Why is EZ-Chow a business that brands should partner with?
We were born from the service industry and you can expect top level customer service. We listen to our partners and we react quickly. EZ-Chow is a tech company with its roots in food service. Our experience and expertise covers a vast range; technology developers, marketing managers, restaurant owners, in-store operators, and corporate executives. We’ve seen it all. We understand the daily problems restaurant and hospitality companies face and we are solving them.
EZ-Chow has solutions such as Online Ordering Solutions and Self-Ordering Kiosk Solutions that integrate into your existing POS systems. To learn how EZ-Chow can help you with these initiatives and more, get started by contacting us here.