Q&A Session: The QSR Automations and OpenTable Partnership
It’s official: QSR’s integration with OpenTable will enable restaurants to utilize both the in-store functionality of QSR’s ConnectSmart®Host (Formerly DineTime) with the consumer network of OpenTable. We talked to Lee Leet, Founder and CEO of QSR Automations, and Cameron Steele, Vice President of Casual Category & Strategic Initiatives for OpenTable, about how the partnership happened and what it means for restaurants and diners.
How Did This Partnership Happen?
LL: We started talks about a partnership about a year ago when we determined that we were providing two different aspects that a lot of restaurants want. Our customers wanted the in-store functionality that ConnectSmart®Host can provide and the larger network that OpenTable has. It was a good fit for both of us and provided a lot of value for all of our customers.
CS: OpenTable diners continue to increasingly look for a comprehensive menu of dining options that span a variety of brands, concepts, and price points. At the same time, the restaurants in QSR’s customer portfolio have been looking for access to OpenTable’s diner network for some time. So collectively we both were looking for a way to fulfill more of these searches and requests to satisfy diners’ everyday dining occasions. With this in mind, the partnership quickly emerged as a natural fit both in terms of the broad selection within their portfolio as well as their technical expertise.
What Does the Partnership Mean for Restaurants in Your Network?
LL: Our partnership with OpenTable gives our customer base access to an excellent marketing tool on top of what ConnectSmart®Host already provides. OpenTable is really focused on and does a good job of getting consumers into restaurants; ConnectSmart®Host’s guest management platform is great at managing the guest experience. Together, we create a seamless experience for guests, from the time they look for a restaurant to the time they leave.
CS: We’re excited about the opportunity to help QSR’s portfolio of ConnectSmart®Host restaurant customers across North America tap into the OpenTable diner network. OpenTable seats more than 22 million diners per month, so we play a meaningful role in helping restaurants fill seats and connect with new diners, including locals and travelers. We also offer ConnectSmart®Host restaurants that don’t currently offer reservations with the ability to expand their concept and allow people to book. Diners love the simplicity of booking on OpenTable any time of day or night, so there’s also an opportunity for restaurants to delight their guests by offering a booking – and ultimately a waitlist – feature for their guests.
What Value Does the Partnership Create for Diners?
LL: ConnectSmart®Host already works in the background to make the guest experience better for diners. Now we can connect even more diners to restaurants that utilize ConnectSmart®Host and OpenTable together, so they can expect better experiences and a larger selection when they choose to dine out.
CS: The reality is that OpenTable diners are already searching for and booking more casual, everyday dining options on our site and apps. By integrating with QSR, we now have the opportunity to provide our diners with even greater selection and serve more of their dining occasions.
Why Did You Choose to Partner?
LL: We always seek to create better value and more opportunities for our customers. This was really a win-win for both us and for those customers. Both QSR Automations and OpenTable are leading providers of technology for restaurants, so the fact that we can provide the best possible solution by partnering is a major benefit for everyone involved.
CS: When you look at the landscape of the largest restaurant groups in the casual dining category, QSR is the leader in kitchen and restaurant management software. They also have excellent leadership, customer support, and tech team, which has been invaluable as we’ve worked jointly on development and outreach to QSR restaurant customers.
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About the Author
Paige Carswell was the Content Marketing Manager for QSR Automations. Paige is a Louisville transplant and usually avoids mentioning that she was a Kansas Jayhawks fan in a former life. She graduated from Southwestern College in 2011 with a degree in journalism, and she spends her spare time enjoying all of the food Louisville has to offer, running, and playing with her dogs.