MICRO MARKETS ARE ONE OF THE MOST EXCITING CONCEPTS IN THE FIELD OF UNSUPERVISED SALES AND SHOPS
The Coronavirus pandemic is thankfully over, people are returning to the office, but not in the way we think. The shift to hybrid working is here to stay. What does this mean for company restaurants? Many companies are looking for alternatives now that offices are no longer fully occupied.
Grab-and-go Micro Markets are unsupervised retail environments where consumers can buy products from open shelves, refrigerators, or freezers around the clock. With self-checkout kiosks or advanced artificial intelligence technology, you will always be able to provide yourself with a fresh heatable meal, sandwiches, a fresh salad, fruit, or even a dessert. Micro Markets offer huge growth potential for self-service kiosks.
Micro Markets are therefore currently one of the fastest-growing trends in foodservice and retail globally, and this is no coincidence. These developments, we believe, will further fuel the rise of Micro Markets over the next decade:
1. THE GROWING DEMAND FOR HEALTHY AND FRESH FOOD
More and more people these days are choosing to eat healthy and eat less fast food. Since Micro Markets allow employees to adjust their offerings as needed, we can say that this increased demand for healthy and fresh food has led to the rise of Micro Markets.
There are several advantages to offering healthy meals at work. Micro Market vending machines in the office keep employees fit and productive, and this simple act also helps to make the workspace a healthier ecosystem to work in. It gives the employer a significant advantage.
Hence, most progressive organizations and offices that are open at odd hours or work in shifts (increasing the pressure on employee health) are now embracing fresh micro markets as an indispensable part of the modern office.
2. CONSUMER CONSUMPTION OUTSIDE RESTAURANT WALLS
The largest growth market over the next decade will be consumer consumption outside of restaurant walls. With more room for delivery and takeaway, restaurants will be forced to be more flexible. Micro Market's biggest strength is flexible, modular offerings.
3. EXPANSION OF FOOD SERVICE OFFERINGS
From hybrid restaurants, dark kitchens, virtual restaurants, delivery or takeaway only, to supermarkets increasingly including full meals in their offerings ... Micro Markets are just the next development in line.
4. THERE IS (UNFORTUNATELY) A GROWING SHORTAGE OF STAFF IN THE SECTOR
It remains a hefty challenge to find and keep good current staff in the hospitality sector. There is a lot of turnover and, combined with rising labour costs, microshops seem somewhat of a solution after all.
5. EVERYTHING BECOMES BIG DATA
Through data analysis, predictions can be made about consumption behaviour, costs are controlled and your organisation's logistics get a hefty efficiency boost.
And big-data and Micro Markets, that's like peanut butter on toast: 'a match made in heaven'. Offering extra vegan bulgur salads, or that reheatable spaghetti bolognese after all? Micro Markets provide data, allowing you to perfectly analyse which meals are most savoured by your employees.
6. TECHNOLOGICAL DEVELOPMENTS
Other technological developments will improve business operations. These include robots, artificial intelligence, algorithms, and a new "meta-universe" that will bring us together in virtual meetings. Micro Markets will further benefit from technological advancements, including a smarter checkout system, smoother installation, and more user-friendly software.
7. SUSTAINABILITY IS BECOMING INCREASINGLY IMPORTANT
We have already seen a resurgence of sustainable developments, including energy and water consumption, reducing food waste, plant-based proteins or meat substitutes, consumption of insects, and local and ecological food.
Companies will not only have to embrace these developments to adapt to a changing world, but they will also have to leverage them as a promotional tool to attract customers. Micro Markets can help companies further reduce their environmental impact.
For example, through data analysis, supply can be better matched to demand to reduce food waste. Furthermore, employers can choose to offer only local meals in the Micro Market.
AT COMPASS GROUP BELGIUM WE ALSO HAVE OUR OWN MICRO MARKET CONCEPT: MARKET 24/7
Micro Markets are thus an appropriate 360-degree solution to a wide variety of problems and challenges. Emerging customer experience-driven technologies will continue to be key to their growth.
At Compass, we have also been working on Micro Markets for a good two years and are now going for the rollout of a new generation of solutions under one name: Market 24/7, a microshop design with a wide range of food and beverage offerings.
Interested in MARKET 24/7? Read more about it here.