Fast-food restaurant chain Wendy’s will install self-order kiosks at 1,000 stores across the country by the end of 2017 to trim extra labor costs imposed by minimum wage hikes, NJ Advance Media reported.
Wendy’s said it already offered to install kiosks in several locations last year and has received positive feedback from customers and franchisees who say they want more of the service.
The company said the kiosks, which cost about $15,000 each, would reduce labor costs and appeal to younger customers. Other companies, including Panera Bread, say the kiosks increase employees’ productivity and are especially valuable during lunchtime and other rush-hours.
Breitbart News reported that several Wendy’s franchises were struggling because of wage costs in 2016. California’s franchise-owned Wendy’s were struggling with the state’s $10 minimum wage while franchise-owned Wendy’s restaurants in New York could not offset the higher minimum wage in the state, where the minimum wage is $15.
Wendy’s franchises “will likely look at the opportunity to reduce overall staff, look at the opportunity to certainly reduce hours and any other cost reduction opportunities, not just price,” Wendy’s CEO Emil Brolick said in 2015.