The company plans to add more equipment, new kitchen displays and improved back-of-house forecasting and labor scheduling in an effort to increase service speeds. The company has also agreed to add an additional 35 hours of labor to each store. These added hours will cost the company about $15 million. The company hopes to be able to add six more transactions a day at each store with these changes. This would give the company a 1% growth in transaction sales. Panera is also looking to remove items from its menu. The company has looked at the sales of items on its menu and will be streamlining it after Thanksgiving. This is expected to help reduce service times and capacity constraints. Panera is hoping that these changes will allow it to increase sales at company-owned restaurants by 2% to 2.75%, reports Nation’s Restaurant News.
Panera also plans to create catering hubs that will handle catering orders for two to five restaurants. These hubs are expected to allow Panera cafes to focus more on retail than filling catering orders.