McDonald’s Implements New, Very Far Away, Drive Through Order Technology

Mickey Dee’s is adding a twist to the garbly voice sneaking through the drive through loudspeaker. The person on the other end isn’t even inside the restaurant you’ve pulled up to, they’re in Hawaii Santa Maria, California.

The new service, currently experimental, reduces costs by centralizing customer service operations within a set of skilled and more precisely trained individuals.

The remote customer service center is subject to typical efficiency pressures. “Software tracks [their] productivity and speed, and every so often a red box pops up on [their] screen to test whether [they are] paying attention. [They are] expected to click on it within 1.75 seconds. In the break room, a computer screen lets employees know just how many minutes have elapsed since they left their workstations,” reports the New York Times. During peak times, operators can take anywhere up to 95 orders an hour.

Money saved through this cost efficacy can be shunted towards other facets, like developing the new chicken slab on top of a quarter-pounder with cheese meal, lite.

And for the operators, another bonus. One worker said after work, “I don’t smell like hamburgers.”

The Long-Distance Journey of a Fast-Food Order” [NYT] (Thanks to Aaron!)