Chipotle Invests in Delivery

Off-site orders are the future Chipotle sees. So much so, in fact, that the new CEO, Brian Niccol, has spent some $3m outfitting stores with new flatscreen ordering systems.  So far, Chipotle as outfitted about 300 stores with these $10,000 platforms–and expects to roll out to another 600 stores this year.

The platforms are the brand’s effort to streamline and lean in to the mobile and delivery segment of the business.  Employees see images of an order’s ingredients, instead of words, and labels are printed automatically instead of handwritten. The new system makes it easier and quicker to train workers, and orders are more accurate according to Chief Digital and Information Officer Curt Garner. The move will improve the additional production lines — dedicated to digital, online and catering orders — that Chipotle has added to supplement the front lines that serve in-store diners.

Taco Bell, KFC and McDonald’s are all now offering the service in some capacity, while Panera Bread has built its own network with 13,000 drivers. Chipotle, meanwhile, is eager to prove it can recapture growth.  Chipotle has said about 8.8 percent of orders go to its second production lines. The chain is working to boost its delivery capabilities — in April it announced a partnership with DoorDash Inc. to add the service to 1,500 restaurants. It also delivers at some locations through Postmates Inc. and Tapingo.

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