Jeremy Julian

222. Restaurant Technology Guys Podcast Ep. 222 – Demystifying AI For Restaurants: Clear Cogs’ Recipe for Reducing Waste, Optimizing Labor, and More

March 4, 2024

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is enigmatically sweeping across all industries, but restaurants, in particular, are one sector where AI can produce profound impacts, such as reducing waste, optimizing labor, and more. In this blog post, we delve into an enlightening conversation between Jeremy Julian, a seasoned podcaster, and Matt Wampler of Clear Cogs, a company at the forefront of providing AI-driven solutions to the restaurant industry.

AI in Restaurant Operations with Clear Cogs
Clear Cogs is an AI-backed company that provides solutions for restaurant operators. At its core, the company aids restaurant owners in managing food costs and labor, two significant expenses in the restaurant business. The unique aspect of Clear Cogs’ solution is that it isn’t a generic product. It is tailored to the specific needs of each restaurant, assisting them in making those daily critical decisions efficiently.

Addressing Food Costs and Waste
Clear Cogs has developed a solution that analyzes numerous data points every day, providing decision-making capabilities. For instance, their solution offers predictive pars – a product amount required at a specific time, basing this on various components, from customer traffic to weather patterns.

By using such AI-backed systems, restaurants can significantly reduce waste, calculate better prep amounts, and optimize food costs. Matt narrates an instance where one of their clients could identify 40 pounds of waste, directly saving on the bottom line.

Tackling Labor Efficiency
Clear Cogs has recently added labor management to its services. The company is not a generic sales forecasting entity. Instead, it dives deep into restaurant operations to ensure labor allocation matches the work. Instead of looking at the overall activities, Clear Cogs focuses on specific actions like making sandwiches or sending out deliveries and accordingly schedules the required labor. Such specificity allows restaurant owners to perform cost-benefit analyses and effectively manage their labor costs.

AI as a Predictive Tool
The conversation touches upon how AI serves as a predictive tool for restaurant owners, using long cook times or queues as examples. By using AI, restaurant owners can forecast the rush period and prepare accordingly. This predictive capacity becomes even more beneficial when it resonates with the brand promise, ensuring the customer always finds what they came for.

Making AI Accessible
Clear Cogs aims to make AI accessible for everyone in the restaurant business, not just the big players. They want their solution to be a one-stop shop for all the answers a restaurant operator might need in day-to-day operations. To bring this vision to life, they recently partnered with Toast and launched in the Toast marketplace. Now, any restaurant with Toast can have an AI-assisted operations planning system.

AI is not a buzz word or a fancy tech trend. Instead, it’s a robust tool that can significantly improve restaurant operations, addressing prime concerns like food costs, labor management, predicting demands, and more. Integration with POS systems has made it easier for companies like Clear Cogs to provide AI-assisted solutions. By integrating these systems into your operations, your restaurant can serve better, waste less, and profit more.

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