APPLEBEE’s customers are furious with the new automated call system for takeout orders.
People have criticized the restaurant chain for being too “lazy” to answer the phone.
Applebee’s no longer wants takeout orders to reach its restaurants via phone call. Instead, they want them outsourced to a call center.
More than half of Applebee’s restaurants, more than 1,500, already use call centers to filter takeout orders. The goal is for most of its restaurants to be using a call center by the end of the year, according to CNN Business.
Applebee President John Cywinski assured customers that they can still call their local restaurant if they have questions about their order.
However, not everyone has happened about this change.
Twitter users have voiced their grievances about the call center on the platform.
“@Applebees get rid of your call center for orders this is stupid you keep screwing up my f**king orders,” one user tweeted out of.
Another person shared a similar sentiment when using the company’s call center.
” Called @Applebees, placed an order, was given a time for pickup and overall arrived at the restaurant and no order was told in the system that I need to be connected to the call center and replace the order and wait. Not very professional. Thanks for the disappointment ,” the user called on twitter.
Applebee’s has been using call centers to screen takeout orders placed through phone calls for three years. However, as the catering industry continues to suffer from staff shortages, the dependency on call centers has increased.
The National Restaurant Association said jobs in bars and restaurants are down about 7% since before the pandemic, as reported by CNN Business.
Other restaurants, like Dominoes, have also considered using a call center to answer takeout orders via phone calls.
David Henkes, a senior director at restaurant consultancy Technomic, said these call centers will help employees focus on their jobs.
“Taking calls adds even more stress to an already difficult job,” Henkes told CNN Business in part.
However, for customers using the call center, the system is not 100% 100% secure.
Melissa Hariri, Applebee’s Executive Director of Communications, demonstrated the difference between ordering through a call center and calling the restaurant.
Hariri tried to order a children’s hamburger through the call center, but was refused as that item was not on the menu. However, by calling a local restaurant, Hariri was able to order the item.
Hariri investigated why she could order a hamburger by calling the restaurant but couldn’t when she called the call center.
There was no hamburger on the restaurant menu, but cheeseburgers were sold.
“The agent knew that a cheeseburger without cheese is a hamburger. Apparently not the machine. “Our team is trying to improve this on the automated side,” Hariri said.
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https://www.the-sun.com/lifestyle/5392599/applebees-takeout-automated-system/ Applebee’s has been criticized for refusing to answer takeout calls while angry customers ranted about the “lazy” automated system