Texas Roadhouse was seeking a way to facilitate employee communications to inform teams around the country about the company’s processes, local marketing campaigns, and customer service.
Since like many restaurants, Texas Roadhouse doesn’t provide office space, desktop computer access, or company email addresses due to costs and turnover, management found this affected how involved and engaged employees felt. Lack of access often leaves employees feeling disconnected. In order to provide everyone access to information and to engage, Texas Roadhouse deployed Red e App. Communications director, Dave Dodson shares his views on how Texas Roadhouse utilizes Red e App to ultimately improve operations and ultimately customer service.
Why did you decide to implement BYOD, and what do you use it to communicate about?
Dave Dodson: We recognize the importance of providing consistent messaging to all of our staff, whether salary or hourly, and the need for our managers to be able to communicate to local staff in an effective and efficient manner. We didn't decide to implement BYOD as much as we decided to leverage it. Our staff had smart devices, but very few had corporate email addresses, so we needed a solution to leverage a service to gain immediate access to employees. One of our most important asset to our national advertising is local marketing and connecting our field teams with the our processes to ensure successful execution. BYOD helps achieve this for us.
What would you say are the additional benefits to BYOD for both employees and restaurants? How about the cons?
A majority of our hourly employees are millennials and in being so, their smartphone is never more than three feet from them. If we have an important message to communicate or want to provide content to an employee, Red e App is the place to do so. Restaurant businesses have many cross functional systems to keep our organization humming. Many of these systems cater only to employees to have corporate email addresses. BYOD allows us to extend the reach of many of these systems and creates efficiencies throughout our whole system, HR, to store support, to marketing, to training, crisis management and so on. One of our challenges is just awareness of the services we have in place to serve our large employee base, and things change at a rapid pace, so getting the word out in a timely manner is critical. As with anything new, the cons for us is learning curve, automation is key, so we are slowly automating our ability to leverage BYOD, so we don't tax our current resources while trying to create more efficiencies.
Why did you choose Red e App?
We have looked and used text systems to reach employees, but they never gave us the level of engagement or visibility we wanted or needed to reach employees. Traditionally, our restaurant employees have never had corporate email addresses and managing their personal email addresses to extend corporate communication proved problematic due, again, to visibility, measurement and who was on the receiving end of our important communications. Our traditional methodologies were the same as most; physical mailings, word of mouth, shift meetings, electronic messages to restaurant leadership so that they could disseminate messaging etc. The problem is, we still have to do most of this, but we are slowly able to pare back these other methods as we begin to see more and more uptake on our BYOD channel.
Do you provide the mobile device to your employees with this app installed, or do you require them to install it on their personal device?
Employees are asked to voluntarily install the app on their personal device. Just as an employee would provide us a phone number to call, now they have access to us via an app.
How are logistics such as costs, hours spent, security, etc. handled?
Costs are minimal for the value we get to shorten business and decision cycles in our large geographically disparate organization. We are trying to be sensitive to any kind of proprietary messaging right now, as most messaging is local store marketing related. We have not yet begun to deliver or make available private or sensitive information using this medium. However, we would say, as we get more comfortable in using this type of engagement platform that the sky is the limit.