Speeding up the food service line


This week I am giving Nick a break from blogging and sharing what I know about speed of identification. I tend to get involved with our product in the developmental and technical side.   I can write on and on about how our system works in all its intricacies to the point that no one would ever want to read a word of this blog.   Specifics aren’t what most want to hear about.    In general most just want to hear, it works, it’s accurate, and it’s fast.  That all sounds great, I imagine every company selling a product like ours simply says those things too.   I am going to blog about speed.  What is fast?
Some of us may have had the opportunity to talk to a highway patrol officer sometime in our driving history.   They may have told you, you were going too fast according to the posted speed limit, but of course, it didn’t seem too fast.   With our system speed never has a limit and in most cases our customers want us to accomplish our job of identification without any time.
Perception of speed is everything in the lunch line too.  We do all sorts of speed tests with our system and our actual match speed is less than a second in the largest of databases.   As a human we can’t even begin to perceive that kind of speed.  It doesn’t answer the question though, is it fast enough?   Does it improve your lunch line speed?   IDconnect® is faster than any other system on the market, yet is it fast enough?   We are brought into lunch rooms across the nation many times for the one purpose of speeding up the lunch line.    In most cases our system really improves a lunch line speed, but it is important to also understand, that if your lunch line’s bottle neck is not at the point of sale, all our speed can’t improve the lunch line speed.     So some time management study is in order.
We take great pride in making our system as fast as possible.  Our servers are being used in environments at a district level, where at lunch time 80 finger readers could all be searching a 25000 patron database at the exact same instance.   All 80 readers want a less than 1 second response.   From a software standpoint, this is a real challenge that we are meeting.    Though the system is extremely fast and though your environment may not have 25000 kids or 80 points of sale, you will want kids in and out of the cafeteria as fast as possible.    One thing new customers also have to understand you want to give the kids the tools to perform their identification as fast and as easy as possible.   Have the reader at an angle and level that makes it easy to place a finger.  Provide a towel to wipe a wet finger. Provide hand sanitizers if you’re going to use them after this process is done, and away from the congestion of the transaction.
Also we can tell you and show you our speed of identification is less than a second in the most congested, demanding speed situations you could imagine, but that really isn’t the measurement you want.   Schools should be more concerned with how fast 100 kids could walk through a line, each placing their finger and getting matched.   Of course our small part of that situation has to be fast, because so many other factors add time to this scenario.     Kids in lines, especially lines that are not moving fast have opportunity for all sorts of delays, I sure don’t want to list all the things kids do in lines, especially since I am sure you can list more.   Kids are motivated to get through the line quickly, because they get to eat, but that motivation doesn’t always translate to a fast line.   Keeping distractions away from this critical areas is also important.   Kids being able to focus on this one small task is so important.  Our feedback lights give you a lot of help here.   All the child has to do is place their finger and look for the green light.  If they get a red light, do it again.
Though Accuracy should be the biggest reason to buy our system, speed definitely is a close second!

Thank you

Bob