Automated Ordering Comes to McDonalds

We hear lots about the outsourcing of jobs to computers and last week I walked right into it at a McDonald’s restaurant. imageThe area usually used for lines extending from the ordering counter now has 2 of these ordering kiosks and several friendly staff were on hand to help customers get oriented to the new way of doing things.  As usual, it took a few seconds for the staff member to figure out that I needed less help than they first thought (gender and age bias seems to jump in a lot there…just my observation and experience) and then I was left alone to easily manage my own order and payment.

As I was finishing, I wondered about how the young woman felt about this transition.  I looked over at the cashier, standing idle and watching her colleagues help people understand the self-serve kiosks.  I wondered if she saw the writing on the wall about her future making French Fries rather than being needed dealing with customers, and I wondered if that would bother her.  As I was finishing up I asked the assistant “and how do you guys feel about these?” She responded…”Oh we like them, it creates jobs (like what I’m doing) and it lets the others focus on making the meals”.

Hmmm…..maybe for now…