Get your business up to speed

iStock_000034793452_LargeRestaurant & Catering Australia has released its Digital Business Kit to help up-skill the hospitality industry to effectively engage in the digital world and increase trade

Restaurant & Catering Australia (R&CA) recently launched its Digital Business Kit at an event at Fine Food Australia, combining it with a series of seminars that will be rolled out across each state to present the most up-to-date ways of reaching consumers online through the use of digital and internet-enabled platforms.

The Federal Government awarded Restaurant & Catering Australia $500,000 over four years to create the kit, which includes five TV episodes: Broadband Technology; Teleworking; Increasing Customer Spend; Business to Business; and Video Conferencing.

R&CA chief executive officer John Hart hopes the kit will encourage restaurateurs, cafe operators and caterers to embrace technology with Service Skills Australia’s 2010 Environmental Scan. He notes that it’s worthwhile since only 36 per cent of the dining sector have their own website.

“Those businesses that can be found online are one step ahead of the rest. A survey undertaken by BIS Sharpnel in May 2013 confirmed that about one-third of Australians search for dining options online,” said Hart.

Google interviewed 1000 Australians aged between 18 and 64 in 2013 and found 68 per cent of people use their smartphone or device to search for products or services with 51 per cent of them using their device to look up restaurants, pubs and bars.

“Thirty-nine per cent researched a business on their smartphone, then went to make a purchase in the business. Given the growth in consumers using online booking, businesses that don’t provide booking functions will not be able to remain competitive,” said Hart.

R&CA launched the ‘Doing Business Better—Social Media’ series last May to help inspire the sector to have an effective presence on social media, and to provide attendees with a how-to guide when taking part in Tourism Australia’s campaign, ‘Restaurant Australia’.

“This is an exciting opportunity for restaurant, cafe and catering operators right across the country, as this is a chance to join the conversation about Australia’s food and wine on an international level,” said Hart.

Project partners H&L Australia, AS Digital and Google also provided attendees with an exclusive insight on how to gain a competitive edge. Hart says it’s fantastic to have such a high calibre of partners supporting the project.

“Google, AS Digital and H&L Australia will be able to provide practical advice on exactly how operators can gain a digital advantage over their competitors, and where to go for additional services,” said Hart.

Operators are encouraged to ‘Like’ Restaurant & Catering on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram (@Restcatering or

“Embrace technology to increase productivity and connect with the Association online, as we continue to promote and advocate the value of the restaurant experience and ensure our industry is recognised for its excellence and professionalism,” said Hart.

Watch the five episodes via the Digital Business Kit tab at

This great content is produced for members of the Restaurant & Catering Association. Find out about becoming a member here.

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