For decades, McDonald’s has been toying with ways to make the customer experience more accurate, timely, and streamlined. Millions of dollars are dedicated a year just to try and shave a single second off the drive-thru time, and many of these tests are enacted in “test kitchens” across the US. Fort Worth, Texas, has one of those test kitchens.
With the new “Accelerating the Arches” growth strategy, the proprietors of the drive-thru now want to show the American consumer what $15 an hour demands for unskilled labor gets you- robots. In a first of its kind, this introvert’s fantasy come true restaurant is fully automated. Designed for the consumer on the go, the inside features no dining area and instead has shelving for delivery drivers and to-go orders awaiting pickup.
“Inside the restaurant, there’s a delivery pickup room for couriers to retrieve orders quickly and conveniently. There are also kiosks where customers can place their orders to go, and a pickup shelf for orders. Outside the restaurant, there are several parking spaces dedicated to curbside order pickup, as well as designated parking spaces for delivery drivers,” said the burger giant via statement.
When the restaurant debuted, many quickly pointed out the problem with this concept. “Well, there goes millions of jobs,” expressed one reviewer. “Honestly, if they go through with this, I’ll just boycott McDonald’s, their food’s mid at best anyway,” said another.
Yet other users largely support the idea, with many pointing out that the number of food issues should decline rapidly. Automating these machines means a more consistent burger every time, with special orders (like ketchup only) ultimately more likely to be right the first time around. There is no more turning back for cold fries or a poorly mixed soft drink, either.
If the automation isn’t working right, the restaurant still employs a small in-house crew to interface with customers or fix machines if absolutely necessary. Thus answering one commenter’s question, “Who are all the Karens supposed to scream at now?”