54th Street restaurant

How Power-Over-Ethernet Touchscreens Streamlined the Fast Casual Dining Experience for 54th Street Restaurants

54th Street Bar & Grill Case Study

Before Power-Over-Ethernet (PoE) technology made its way into the restaurant industry, kitchen display systems were hamstrung by two things: access to a nearby power outlet and, by extension, the “mess” of cords and cables that cluttered up the food prep area. 

Since then, Kitchen Armor has led the charge (pardon the pun) in making Power-Over-Ethernet touchscreens a must-have for busy kitchens big and small. 

By definition, PoE devices draw the power needed to run the system from an ethernet line that connects to the server. This eliminates the need for a separate power cord and a nearby AC outlet. 

Kitchen Armor has taken the technology up a notch, offering stainless steel touchscreen monitors that not only support the logistical and efficiency needs of a restaurant, but are also built to withstand the rigors of a fast-paced commercial kitchen. 

A prime example of how Kitchen Armor technology helped improve operations and increase efficiency comes from 54th Street Restaurants, the family-owned fast casual chain with 32 locations across Texas, Missouri, Kansas, and Illinois.

Cleaning Up the Kitchen

Installing Kitchen Armor’s Android All-In-One Power Over Ethernet devices solved the headache of multiple messy cables running throughout the prep area, as well as bump bar units that end up failing, requiring multiple support calls a day and constant equipment replacement.

“Once we installed the Kitchen Armor touchscreens, all the cable management is gone and the support calls stopped,” said Al Stenner, CIO of 54th Street parent company Kellan Restaurant Management. “All the big pain points that my team had been struggling with are gone, and their kitchens started running more efficiently.” 

Changing Training for the Better

With the help of Kitchen Armor’s All-in-One Power Over Ethernet devices and QSR’s ConnectSmart kitchen software, 54th Street was able to simplify and dramatically reduce their training process. Preparation that had taken six to eight months was streamlined into a 30-day process, making a huge impact on their overall operations. 

The time it takes to train a new employee and the number of mistakes has also dramatically reduced for the 54th Street team. This is where Stenner says they see their biggest return on investment. 

“What we might have missed in our training, what we lightly covered or covered too heavily, it’s all at their fingertips,” says Stenner. “With the Kitchen Armor All-In-One touchscreens, employees tap one button and make the item. Servers then tap that same button to deploy out to the restaurant floor with ease.”

With Kitchen Armor devices, 54th Street teams are able to roll out check lists, put pictures of how drinks are garnished, and have it all right at the bartender’s fingertips. 

The ease of following a recipe on a screen and the ability to simply tap the screen for assistance reduced the number of drinks that would come back to the bar, according to Stenner. As a result, consistency dramatically increased across all bar tenders. 

“None of that was possible before the Kitchen Armor 10” touchscreens,” says Stenner. “We were able to ditch the recipe books and printers at the bar all together. Bar was the first area where our Kitchen Armor investment immediately proved its worth.”

Improving Operations

Since the 54th” Street operations team deployed Kitchen Armor Android All-In-One touchscreens in their bar and kitchens, operations have seen a marked improvement. 

“When we moved to a touchscreen and moved away from bump bars, that was a game changer,” said Stenner. “Thanks to the Kitchen Armor touchscreens, we were able to seamlessly customize the kitchen and bar to our precise specifications, elevating the overall functionality and design of these crucial areas. The integration of this advanced technology truly made all the difference in creating a truly exceptional experience for our guests. The all-in-one units gives the staff tools for situational awareness that was originally lacking.”

By all accounts, the 54th Street team has embraced Kitchen Armor products and, according to Mr. Stenner, his team feels like they cannot operate as efficiently without them.

“When supply chain issues started happening mid-2021, we ended up ordering our entire market right then to make sure we had what we needed,” said Stenner. “That is how important Kitchen Armor is to us.” 

All of us on the Kitchen Armor team are proud and humbled to be such a vital component to improving operations and efficiency at an outstanding company like 54th Street Restaurants. 

To tap into the many ways Kitchen Armor can improve your restaurant, talk to the Kitchen Armor team.

Brooke Knight
Author: Brooke Knight