Will McDonald's self-serve kiosks be a threat to jobs in Canada?
Throughout the years, fast-food retailers have made various changes to their business models. And while trends come and go (does anyone remember Burger King’s Burger Shots?), there is a new fad on the horizon at McDonald’s . . . one that may just be here to stay!
RELATED TOPIC: Will McDonald’s new menu items last?
You may already be aware of the fact that the famous fast food chain is facing declining sales globally, which has led the Illinois-based company to start taking various measures to overhaul its business model—leading to the self-serve kiosk stations.
Now arriving in Canada, these stations have already been introduced to restaurants in the United States and France. Specifically, in France, the self-serve kiosks stations have been used for over a decade and handle 40 per cent of customer traffic during busy periods.
And as this trend starts to become more popular throughout Canada and the United States, we have to ask the obvious question: Are jobs at stakes?
RELATED TOPIC: Canada McDonald’s new business strategy—How you can compete
As of now, it looks like employees can take a deep breath. It’s been reported that the self-serve kiosks are still just in the testing phase and only offered in a small handful of locations across the country.
Regarding the issue, Adam Grachnik, a spokesperson for McDonald’s Canada said, “These kiosks are designed to give our guests a modern opportunity to order at their own pace and try their own hand at customizing their order (if they choose to). They also offer an alternative option for guests to place their order during busy periods.
Furthermore, Grachnik added, “It’s part of the chain’s ongoing brand evolution and a reaction to today’s digital age where our guests are looking for a fast, efficient service experience as well as user-friendly ordering options.”
As with any type of new technology, the systems have not been without glitches; however, McDonald’s is still planning on powering through to work out the various kinks. And while the kiosks have been incorporated for a variety of purposes, one in particular stands out: the movement for a $15 minimum wage, which could threaten a fast food restaurant’s business model.
However, the company has blatantly stated that these kiosks are not designed to replace its staff.
Grachnik recently stated, “In restaurants currently testing our self-order kiosks, the scheduled number of restaurant crew is the same or higher as without kiosks in order to support the needs of our guests.”
For the latest news in the food industry, visit our sister brand Food, Drink & Franchise.
RELATED TOPIC: Tim Hortons continues to successfully build customer trust
[SOURCE: Huffington Post Canada]
Six issues at the top of tax and finance leaders’ agenda
New Deloitte research reveals that tax leaders are under increasing pressure to add strategic value as companies accelerate business model transformation, from undergoing digital transformations to rethinking their supply chains or investing in green initiatives.
According to Phil Mills, Deloitte Global Tax & Legal Leader, to “truly deliver value to the business, the tax function needs to rethink its resourcing model and transform its technology infrastructure to create capacity and control costs”.
And the good news, according to Mills, is that tax and business leaders have more options at their disposal to achieve this.
Reflecting the insights of global tax and finance executives at global companies, Deloitte’s Tax Operations in Focus study reveals the six issues at the top of tax and finance leaders’ agenda.
Trend 1: Businesses seek more strategic counsel from tax
Companies are being pushed to develop new digital products and distribution channels and accelerate sustainable transformation and this is taking them into uncharted tax territory. Tax leaders say their teams must have the resources and skills to give deeper advisory support on digital business models (65%), supply chain restructuring (49%) and sustainability (48%) over the next two years. This means redrawing the boundaries of what tax professionals focus on, and accelerating adoption of advanced technologies and lower-cost resourcing models to meet compliance requirements and free up time.
According to Joanne Walker, Group Tax Director, BT Group PLC, "There’s still a heavy compliance load today, but the vision for the future would be that much of that falls away, and tax people become subject matter experts who help program the machine, ensure quality control, and redirect their time to advisory activity.”
Trend 2: Tipping point for resourcing models
Business partnering demands in the tax department are on the rise, but 93% of tax leaders say their department’s budget is remaining flat or falling. To ensure that the tax function can redefine itself as a strategic function at the pace that is required, leaders are choosing to move increasing amounts of compliance and reporting to a combination of shared service centers, finance departments, and outsourcing providers that have invested in best-in-class technology.
Trend 3: Digital tax administration is moving faster than expected
in addition to the rising focus of the corporate tax department partnering with their business counterparts, transformative changes to the way companies share tax information with revenue authorities is also creating an imperative to modernize operations at a faster pace. Nine in 10 (92%) respondents say that shifting revenue authority demands on digital tax administration will have a moderate or high impact on tax operations and resources over the next five years—and several heads of tax said the trend is moving faster than expected.
"It’s really stepped up in the last couple of years," says Anna Elphick, VP Tax, Unilever. "Tax authorities don't just want a faster turnaround for compliance but access into a company’s systems. It's not unreasonable to think that in a much shorter time than we expect, compliance will be about companies reviewing a return that's been drafted by the tax authorities."
Trend 4: Data simplification and lower-cost resourcing are top priorities
Tax leaders said that simplifying data management (53%) and moving to lower-cost resourcing models (51%) must be prioritized if tax is to become more proactive at delivering strategic insights to the business. Many tax teams are ensuring that they have a seat at the table as ERP systems are overhauled, which is paying dividends: 56% of those that have introduced NextGen ERP systems are now highly effective at supporting the business with scenario-modeling insights. Only 35% of those with moderate to low use of NextGen ERP systems said the same.
At Stryker, “we automated the source P&L process for transfer pricing which took a huge burden off of the divisions," says David Furgason, Vice President Tax. "Then we created a transfer price database to deposit and retrieve data so we have limited impact on the divisions. We are moving to a single ERP platform which will help us make take the next step with robotics.”
Trend 5: Skillsets are shifting
Embedding a new data infrastructure and redesigning processes are critical for the future tax vision. Tax leaders are aligned — data skills (45%) and technology process experience (43%) are ‘must have’ skills in a tax department of the future, but more traditional tax specialist knowledge also remains key (40%). The trick to success will be in tax leaders facilitating the way these professionals, with their different backgrounds, can work together collectively to unlock lasting value.
Take Infineon Technologies, which formed a VAT technology and governance group "that has the right knowledge about how to change the system to ensure it generates the right reports", according to Matthias Schubert, Global Head of Tax. "Involving them early was key as we took a greenfield approach, so we could think about what the optimal processes would look like and how more intelligent systems could make an impact
Trend 6: 2020 brought productivity improvements
Improved productivity (50%) and accelerating shifts to remote working (48%) were cited as the biggest operational benefits to emerge from COVID-19-driven disruption. But, as 78% of leaders now plan to embed either hybrid or fully remote models in the tax function long term, 34% say maintaining productivity benefits is a top concern. And, as leaders think about building their talent pipeline and strengthening advisory skill sets, 47% say they must prioritize new approaches to talent recognition and career development over the next two years, while 36% say new processes for involving tax in business strategy decisions must be established.