Welcoming your students back on campus: a checklist for education caterers


As various universities, colleges and schools are making arrangements to safely welcome new and returning students back in September, it is important to check and prepare various aspects of your catering facilities. From EPoS system health check to new service offerings and promotion programmes, making sure you are well-prepared will help create an enjoyable campus dining experience for your students and staff.


EPOS Health Check

For many education caterers, this could be the first time you have turned on your PoS terminals in a long time, so it is important to have a thorough check beforehand to make sure your reopening will go smoothly:

1. Turn on your PoS terminals with ample time before your reopening date.

There may be many Windows and security updates that need to apply, so give the hardware plenty of time to power on and install these.

2. Test the connected peripherals.

Check to make sure your cash drawers, receipt printers, kitchen printers, scanners etc. are all still working as expected; also check your integrated chip & pin terminals to make sure they power on and connect to the till properly.

3. Ensure your PoS terminal and devices are connected to the Internet.

Onsite IT teams may have utilised the downtime to improve their services so network details and passwords could have changed!

4. Stay on top of your back-office system

If your EPoS system has a back-office facility, make sure this is properly integrated to your on-site hardware and software, and ensure that your till maps, products and prices are all up to date. If you are a Uniware client, you can control all aspects of your PoS as well as Upay using Uniware Cloud.

Ensuring a safe environment for staff and students

Contactless operation

While different institutions might have different policies on social distancing and other safety measures, enhancing contactless operation (such as self-service kiosks, mobile payment, etc.) is an area you can do to minimise risks and improve your customer experience at the same time.

Thorough cleaning

It is important to keep your PoS and self-service terminals clean for staff and customers to use:

Do:

· Clean as often as needed without affecting the longevity or quality of the equipment

· Use a microfibre clot or soft towel

· Spray the cleaner onto the cloth and wipe the PoS terminal and peripherals.

Don’t:

· Do not spray the cleaner directly onto the hardware

· Do not soak the hardware

· Do not use abrasive cleaning products or materials (e.g. scouring pad)

Adapting to new customer behaviours and boost customer engagement

Diversified service options

One impact of the pandemic that many education caterers have seen is the shift towards food pre-order, either for collection or delivery. In the last 18 months since the beginning of the pandemic, around 50% of Uniware clients in the education sector have introduced Order Ahead, an online food pre-order module, at their premises. This utilisation of technology has meant they can diversify their service options amid a drop in footfall, and that in turn has helped them weather the Covid storm while maintaining engagement with their staff and student customers.


Incentivising your customers

If you are a Upay client, explore various features you can take advantage of to nurture engagement with your staff and student customers, while also boosting their long-term loyalty. Promotions, Discounts, Vouchers and Loyalty Points are all available through the Upay application.


Support for Uniware clients

Uniware can offer EPOS health checks, self-service & mobile terminals, protective screens as well as online ordering for click & collect, promotions and loyalty for rewarding customers. Please speak to your Account Manager to learn more about how we can help, or contact us at info@uniware.co.uk.



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