University of Nebraska-Lincoln students will now be able to use a kiosk to order from the East Campus Corner Deli. Instead of waiting in line to order, they will go up to the kiosk, punch in their order, receive a ticket slip from the kiosk and wait for their name to be called.
“You take your ticket to the cashier; the cashier scans it and knows how much to charge,” University Dining Services director Dave Annis said.
The kiosk is located right inside the restaurant and was implemented on Nov. 13. According to Annis, kiosks are being added to dining halls at college campuses around the nation.
“Our customers are learning the new system, and it seems to be going pretty well,” he said. “We’re certainly learning a lot.”
Annis said the goal of the kiosk is to minimize the time students spend waiting in line and create a quick, easy process for them to order ahead and pick up their food. Annis and Ronald White, assistant food service manager for East Campus Dining Center, said students have figured the system out pretty quickly.
“Once they got used to it, it was a no brainer,” White said. “I haven’t heard anything negative about it yet.”
According to White, students no longer have the option to order from the Corner Deli in person. However, they can still customize their orders, and they still interact with staff members when they pick up their food.
“It’s efficient because we know exactly what the customer wants,” he said. ”All they have to do is take their ticket to the register.”
Since the installation, Annis said he has found ways to improve the kiosk ordering system. In particular, he decided to add a customization option that allows customers to choose if they want their sandwich toasted or made as a panini.
Two other kiosks are projected to be implemented next semester. According to Annis, one will be in the Nebraska East Union, and the other will be in the Husker Heroes at Abel Hall.
“We wanted to find a place that we could test using the kiosks on [city campus], too,” Annis said.
The kiosk at Abel will be open until midnight, and students will be able to choose whether they want to order in person or from the kiosk. Annis said he is also looking into extending the dinner meal period to run from 4:30 p.m. to 12 a.m. in the spring 2020 semester. He said Abel students requested the change because some students don’t have time for dinner until later in the evening.
According to White, the kiosk at the Corner Deli will also be updated, possibly next semester, to feature a limited time only sandwich and a sandwich of the month. If students like the new sandwiches, they will be kept as part of the menu.
“I’m excited that the kiosk gives me a chance to showcase the newer products we are thinking about doing,” White said.