Does this new technology put the future of restaurant fit outs in jeopardy?

Perusing through my favourite industry website,, I came across an article that highlights a new system that chooses machine over man for the food ordering process. It made me wonder, is this where the future is taking us and what does that mean for the future of our main service, restaurant fit outs?

restaurant fit outs in jeopardy

Let’s look at this new technology in more detail and you can decide for yourself where this is heading in the future.

Elimination of visible staff at restaurants

Across some eateries in San Francisco, visible staff has been eliminated from restaurant premises to make ordering more efficient. In such a system, customers place their orders using iPads and smartphones and food items get delivered to them with the help of a cubby. Upon paying for their meal, customers serve as cashiers themselves and pay via credit and debit cards. This system, indeed, seems to be quite convenient as it offers customers a lot of flexibility with customisation of menu choices and the system also saves customer preferences for repeat visits.

Current industry trends in Australia

While the restaurant industry in Australia is well set to reach a total of $12 billion by 2016, there is also a visible trend of lifestyles getting busier and leisure times decreasing among Australians. Although this bodes well for restaurants, restaurants need to ensure to spend less time on food preparation and combine dining and leisure into one efficient process. Nevertheless, the industry is expected to see an annual growth of 4.6% from 2011 through to 2016 and revenues are expected to grow by 2% from 2015 to 2016.

There is also an increased awareness among Australian consumers to take to nutritional food and keep away from fast food. This approach towards healthier food choices have led to new food operators opening up and it has also forced the fast food industry into offering more healthy food choices. While the fast food services industry struggled in 2010 through to 2012 due to these reasons, it has recovered, and is now growing at 2.4% from 2011 to 2016.

What this means for Australian restaurateurs

Technology may be on the rise and the elimination of visible staff from restaurants may have taken off in many parts of the world already. However, regardless of whether this technology enters Australia anytime soon, research reports show that consumers will still head towards restaurants for their dining and for their pleasure. With or without this new technology, there will still be a need for relaxation and leisure, along with good food, to ensure that customers have a good dining experience. As such, it really does not look like the future of restaurant fit outs is in any jeopardy; people will still need to relax, socialise and have fun. This is also good news for us, at Xtreme Shopfitting, as we specialise in restaurant fit outs.

We have over 30 years of experience in dealing with commercial fit outs, including restaurant fit outs, among many others. We service Australia wide and have helped a number of restaurants with effective fit outs. Click here to check out our portfolio of completed restaurant fit outs in Australia.


Technology certainly is on the rise and we may very well do away with visible staff in restaurants in the future. This technology has already been implemented across eateries in San Francisco and Australia may soon see this technology enter eateries and restaurants here as well. However, while this new technology certainly seems to have its place in the market, there will always be the need for rest, relaxation and socialising with friends and family and this is often best done whilst breaking bread, so I don’t believe restaurant fit outs are in jeopardy. As suggested by IBIS research reports, I believe that there will always be a need for restaurants, no matter what technology throws at us.

If you’re interested in an old fashioned restaurant fit out for your restaurant then speak to our experts at Xtreme Shopfitting & Joinery. Give us a call on 07 5564 7525 or drop by our contact page for further details. We’d love to assist you with your restaurant fit out!

Source: IBISWorld

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Ingrid Latham

About Ingrid Latham

Ingrid Latham is co-owner of Xtreme Shopfitting and Joinery and has been associated with the shopfitting industry for over 15 years. She has a vast array of knowledge when it comes to promoting a store and increasing foot traffic. Follow her on Google+ or