The pandemic has forced schools to make major changes in the way they operate. And some of the biggest changes have occurred in the cafeteria. It’s more important than ever before that students move through serving lines quickly and safely while still being protected from food allergens.
With universal free meals, all students are guaranteed a nutritious meal every day. This eliminates most payments, but the cafeteria staff is still responsible for reporting results for the school’s nutrition program. This is one of several reasons you should use a point–of–sale system even when meals are free.
Read on to learn three more reasons you should use a POS when meals are free.
1. Keep parents informed.
Using a POS allows cafeteria staff to record how many meals are served each day and to which students. Combined with our online payment system, MyPaymentsPlus, parents can see if their child received a school-provided lunch and what items were in that meal. Your school can also allow parents to preorder their student’s meals, so the cafeteria knows what items to prepare ahead of time.
2. Provide allergy alerts.
As you’re trying to serve meals as fast as possible, safety needs to remain top of mind. A POS system helps identify those students with allergies who need alternative meals. With MyPaymentsPlus, parents can see what their child is eating every day and update their meal preferences to account for any dietary restrictions. No matter the dietary requirements, Horizon’s intuitive software can manage students’ needs to keep everyone safe.
3. Boost a la carte sales.
There will still be students who want to purchase additional items, and a POS is the best way to track those items. By using a POS in conjunction with MyPaymentsPlus, students can make purchases using several cashless payment options, so no physical money needs to change hands. Parents have complete transparency in managing their student’s accounts in a user-friendly portal, and your cafeteria staff benefits from the robust reporting capabilities and the confidence in our PCI-compliancy standards.
The lunch line is the foundation of your school nutrition program. Serving lines need to be fast, accurate, and protect students from allergens. An easy-to-use POS is essential to an efficient lunchroom. The right system will speed up transactions and minimize the time students spend waiting in line, all while boosting participation and providing the data your nutrition staff needs to make informed decisions and improve margins.
Horizon understands the business of school nutrition, and we take seriously our obligation to provide smarter tools for better cost control. Contact us today to learn more about how we can improve and enhance your school nutrition program.