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  1. #251
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    Re: McDonald’s fresh hope to turn around slumping sales: Ordering burgers from a mach

    Quote Originally Posted by jmotivator View Post
    No, you have over simplified the economics. The decision to install kiosks is not a stand alone decision. The up front cost of the kiosks and the cost of maintenance have to be compared to the similar cost of keeping human staff.

    If, for instance, 1 employee at $8/hour can process 30 orders per hour and 1 Kiosk costs effectively $9/hour and processes the same number of orders then the decision to keep the person is easy. But is the government now imposes a $10/hour minimum wage now the kiosk is the better choice. The choice to use kiosks has EVERYTHING to do with the cost of labor.

    The drive through isn't really a special case. Replace speakers and menu boards with a kiosk and a smartphone app. Cooks (until they are automated) can simply put the foot on a conveyor for delivery to the drive through window or the counter.

    You won't likely eliminate ALL employees at a fast food restaurant but if you cut down the staffing need from 8 to 2 then the 2 minght get $15 and hour but that is small consolation to the other 6.
    Cost isn't the only consideration. Take for example the coke machine kiosks that have started to get added to various places. I go to a movie and now they give me a cup to go fill up my drink. The kiosk has about a million different soda's which is freaking amazing. It has saved the movie theater a tons of money because they have eliminated positions because filling soda's probably accounted for the majority of their time filling an order.

    Win/win right? Wrong! Now I have to sit behind someone that doesn't know their elbow from their ass trying to work the machine and 4 other people that typically breathe through their mouth. It may of saved AMC theaters money but it's ruined my experience and makes me more likely to sneak in a diet Mr. Pibb than go through that aggravating experience.

    The elimination of fast food staff is heavily reliant on people doing what they should when going through the process. You can control your staff, you have no idea what will happen when you open it to the wider public. What happens if I only go to fast food once every couple of months and drive up to see a kiosk? I may be like "**** this" and go to Wendy's.

    We;ve rarely gotten to see a reprieve from increased social spending in this country in that time, but as I have shown with the Economist graph, when welfare was cut in 1997 the income of the 10th, 20th and 50th percentiles increased by as much as 20%.
    The wage increases are usually credited to the huge economic boom of the 90's. Did Welfare to Work create the economic boom?
    “Capitalism is the astounding belief that the most wickedest of men will do the most wickedest of things for the greatest good of everyone.” John Maynard Keynes

  2. #252
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    Re: McDonald’s fresh hope to turn around slumping sales: Ordering burgers from a mach

    Quote Originally Posted by Lursa View Post
    What? Are 5 Guys fries supposed to be limp and soggy with oil? I've had them twice and they were like that both times. Ugh.
    I second that experience. 5 Guys is at the very bottom for me when it comes to burgers and fries due to the copious amounts of oil they slather on everything (it wouldn't surprise me if they put oil in the drinks). I'd rather eat one of those hockey pucks they call McDonalds than eat at 5 Guys. Still, automated registers or not, I think that McDonalds' only chance of turning the slump around is to offer a better quality product as there are too many other options at comparable prices (Wendy's, BK, Culvers, Kopps....I guess we're spoiled in WI :P).

  3. #253
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    Re: McDonald’s fresh hope to turn around slumping sales: Ordering burgers from a mach

    Quote Originally Posted by aseidner View Post
    I second that experience. 5 Guys is at the very bottom for me when it comes to burgers and fries due to the copious amounts of oil they slather on everything (it wouldn't surprise me if they put oil in the drinks). I'd rather eat one of those hockey pucks they call McDonalds than eat at 5 Guys. Still, automated registers or not, I think that McDonalds' only chance of turning the slump around is to offer a better quality product as there are too many other options at comparable prices (Wendy's, BK, Culvers, Kopps....I guess we're spoiled in WI :P).
    Well I thought the burgers were fine, but nothing special (certainly better than McDs) but the fries.....who likes them that way?

    (And McDs really does have excellent fries)
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  4. #254
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    Re: McDonald’s fresh hope to turn around slumping sales: Ordering burgers from a mach

    Quote Originally Posted by Lursa View Post
    Well I thought the burgers were fine, but nothing special (certainly better than McDs) but the fries.....who likes them that way?

    (And McDs really does have excellent fries)
    I agree...McD's has the best fries and I love their fountain drinks. On the burger side...they suck...you open those things up and it's probably the most spartan "burger" you'll ever see. Like five flecks of onion, a squirt of ketchup and mustard and two pickles.

    I try to eat healthy and when I'm craving a burger I want good burger
    “Capitalism is the astounding belief that the most wickedest of men will do the most wickedest of things for the greatest good of everyone.” John Maynard Keynes

  5. #255
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    Re: McDonald’s fresh hope to turn around slumping sales: Ordering burgers from a mach

    Quote Originally Posted by iliveonramen View Post
    I agree...McD's has the best fries and I love their fountain drinks. On the burger side...they suck...you open those things up and it's probably the most spartan "burger" you'll ever see. Like five flecks of onion, a squirt of ketchup and mustard and two pickles.

    I try to eat healthy and when I'm craving a burger I want good burger
    The fries are indeed delicious. McD's used to have a line of 'premium' burgers called angus burgers that were actually decent. Apparently they have been discontinued though.....

  6. #256
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    Re: McDonald’s fresh hope to turn around slumping sales: Ordering burgers from a mach

    Quote Originally Posted by JasperL View Post
    Right, the meaning of 'is' is...
    Incorrect. Promote has a real definition and purpose in the sentence. You removed it to change what I said.

    Right, but the point of anti-trust laws is to maintain competitive markets. We've decided to quit enforcing them, and a growing share of our economy is dominated by just a handful or less of firms. The automakers were just the first to buy enough influence to enable them to form into behemoths that made it infeasible for competitors to emerge. We don't have to have "free trade" to have competition in the marketplace. That's a choice we made as a country to allow the Big Three to form.
    It is a choice between having the big three by merger and having the big three by companies going out of business. Which do you choose? Foreign auto makers were killing American auto business in quality and cost for over a decade, would you block those sales to prop up the under achievers just because they are American? All that does is reward under achieving.


    You made an unsupported assertion that free trade is good for the poor. I don't believe that is true.
    No, I said no such thing. I said it was a trade off. As wages stagnated the PPP increased. The poor may have as many inflation adjusted dollars as they used to but they can afford more goods with that dollar.

    I haven't studied it but it's likely because wages didn't keep pace with inflation for various good reasons.
    False!

    Of course they have a causal relationship - real wages cannot grow unless productivity grows. It's how we get real increases in the standard of living.

    And your labor supply thing doesn't work either. Here is a link to a graph of the labor force. It's grown fairly steadily since 1948 - the first year of the series online. And as growth in the labor force leveled off and declined, we should see average wage increases, but we don't - they've remained flat.

    Here's another graph that proves the point even better: Source is here: EconoSpeak: Cheap Hustle #2: How to Lie with Statistics

    Attachment 67173147

    In case it disappears, what it shows is an amazing link between wages and compensation - but this graph is of TOTAL compensation. The difference between that graph and the other is the other is median wages. The point is productivity has increased income as it must, but the income has been going to a smaller and smaller share of the workforce - the upper sliver. And recently it has gone to profits, and total wages have declined.
    It is funny to see a blog post called "How to lie with statistics" go on to lie with statistics. As his reference article states, regarding productivity, the productivity is affected by the tools at the disposal of the worker among other things. It goes back to my old joke I stated earlier about the shovels and spoons. Growing automation is just as responsible for the split as the change in the workforce, and the nature of the work being done. Does an employee deserve a raise because his company decided to invest in a bigger backhoe?


    (More later)
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  7. #257
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    Re: McDonald’s fresh hope to turn around slumping sales: Ordering burgers from a mach

    Quote Originally Posted by sangha View Post
    Not missing out on any part of your argument. I'm rejecting it because it's unsound.

    There is no stagflation, except maybe some in the economy as a whole
    Who said anything about stagflation?
    Give a man a fish and he eats for a day. Teach a man to fish and he stops voting for the Free Fish party.

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    Re: McDonald’s fresh hope to turn around slumping sales: Ordering burgers from a mach

    Quote Originally Posted by jmotivator View Post
    No, you have over simplified the economics. The decision to install kiosks is not a stand alone decision. The up front cost of the kiosks and the cost of maintenance have to be compared to the similar cost of keeping human staff.

    If, for instance, 1 employee at $8/hour can process 30 orders per hour and 1 Kiosk costs effectively $9/hour and processes the same number of orders then the decision to keep the person is easy. But is the government now imposes a $10/hour minimum wage now the kiosk is the better choice. The choice to use kiosks has EVERYTHING to do with the cost of labor.
    All we have is your assertion. The article I quoted said the machines cost $4,000. So they can install 4 or 5 of them for the cost of one minimum wage worker over 2,000 hours. But they haven't....

    The drive through isn't really a special case. Replace speakers and menu boards with a kiosk and a smartphone app. Cooks (until they are automated) can simply put the foot on a conveyor for delivery to the drive through window or the counter.
    You're debating the author of the article that has given the subject more thought and talked to more people than you have.

    We;ve rarely gotten to see a reprieve from increased social spending in this country in that time, but as I have shown with the Economist graph, when welfare was cut in 1997 the income of the 10th, 20th and 50th percentiles increased by as much as 20%.
    Now you'll tell me that Presidential elections are affected by the winner of the Super Bowl (NFC or AFC) because you've found a correlation there. Correlation =/= cause. You have to prove causes empirically and control for other factors, such as the tech boom, etc.

    I didn't lump them together in the way you seem to think. I was not including SS and Medicare in my evaluation of welfare spending except insofar as I was discussing the increase in entitlements in general, but the trend of entitlement spending is largely the same even absent Medicare (and SS has not increased dramatically until recently due to increased numbers of recipients), and the results are the same: no change, no return on investment.
    Well, which ones didn't work? NONE of them? Different programs will be more or less effective. And you ignored the entire point that the underlying poverty rate is also key - what would the rate have been without the spending? You have no idea.

  9. #259
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    Re: McDonald’s fresh hope to turn around slumping sales: Ordering burgers from a mach

    Quote Originally Posted by jmotivator View Post
    It is a choice between having the big three by merger and having the big three by companies going out of business. Which do you choose? Foreign auto makers were killing American auto business in quality and cost for over a decade, would you block those sales to prop up the under achievers just because they are American? All that does is reward under achieving.
    You missed the point - a better solution is to enforce anti-trust rules.

    No, I said no such thing. I said it was a trade off. As wages stagnated the PPP increased. The poor may have as many inflation adjusted dollars as they used to but they can afford more goods with that dollar.
    Well, I'm not sure how that works - adjusting for inflation puts the wages on that scale - cheaper imported goods kept inflation lower than it would have been. Doesn't mean purchasing power for the median worker increased.

    False!
    Well, if you say so, I guess it must be true!

    It is funny to see a blog post called "How to lie with statistics" go on to lie with statistics. As his reference article states, regarding productivity, the productivity is affected by the tools at the disposal of the worker among other things. It goes back to my old joke I stated earlier about the shovels and spoons. Growing automation is just as responsible for the split as the change in the workforce, and the nature of the work being done. Does an employee deserve a raise because his company decided to invest in a bigger backhoe?
    No it's not. We've been replacing people with machines for the history of the U.S. - that's a big reason why productivity has increased and along with it living standards. And as we got more productive, WAGES increased along with productivity, but starting around 1970, those wage increases only went to the top sliver. You're ignoring the point of the graph and my discussion. Wages kept rising along with productivity - they ARE linked. The divergence was where the wage increases went - to the top slivers, NOT to the median worker.

    And sure, if we want living standards to go up, then wages will have to increase as productivity increases. If not, we'll have more stagnation at the bottom, more income flowing to the top and more inequality, eventually reaching a tipping point where you'll see real pushback on the part of workers. There is historical precedence for that - the labor movement of the late 19th and early 20th century.
    Last edited by JasperL; 09-18-14 at 05:52 PM.

  10. #260
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    Re: McDonald’s fresh hope to turn around slumping sales: Ordering burgers from a mach

    Quote Originally Posted by jmotivator View Post
    Who said anything about stagflation?
    *stagnation*

    It was a typo, but you knew that.
    Quote Originally Posted by matchlight View Post
    Justice Thomas' opinions consistently contain precise, detailed constitutional analyses.
    Quote Originally Posted by jaeger19 View Post
    the vast majority of folks that need healthcare are on Medicare.. both rich and poor..

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