Increase profitability and save time using NCR Aloha digital ordering

Since “Breakfast should never be boring” was a founding principle at Hollywood’s Blu Jam Cafe, they thought online and contactless ordering shouldn’t be, either. So, NCR channel partner, i3 Verticals Point of Sale, quickly helped them adopt QR code-based ordering with their Aloha POS and it’s been a hit with guests.
If you’re going to the next level why would you not use Aloha? I realize there are a lot options now, but they don’t even compare in their understanding of restaurant operations. You can get the quick and dirty if you want, but it just tells me that you're not a detailed operator.”


 Jay Perrin, Director of Operations, Blu Jam Café
What they needed

To quickly pivot to online & contactless dining

Blu Jam Cafe started with a fresh concept: a casual café in Hollywood that would use local and organic ingredients to create gourmet breakfast and lunch dishes at an affordable price. The first Blu Jam Cafe opened in 2006 in the former site of an underground jazz club. Now, as new Blu Jams open in more locations, its partners wanted better ways to track and manage sales, labor costs and other information for business decisions — including better understanding their customers and evolving to serve them better, too. When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, Blu Jam was also faced with the challenge of offering its customers safe ways to order and pick up meals.

What we delivered

Digital Ordering & Contactless Dine-In Capabilities

Before the pandemic struck, Blu Jam was already using NCR Aloha, which provided core restaurant POS capabilities and advanced business intelligence.  As a result, when stay-at-home orders went into effect for the pandemic, they had the information they needed to shift their business model on the fly to keep sales and revenue flowing.  To reduce their labor expense and drive contactless experiences for their guests, both inside and outside their restaurant, Blu Jam added Aloha Digital Ordering.  Prior to the pandemic, servers accounted for 8% of their expenses.  Making this shift to consumer-led ordering enabled them to cross-train staff and reallocate their labor. As an added bonus, having their own branded digital channels enabled them to own their customer experience while limiting revenue loss to third-party delivery services. In addition, adding the app helps them to create their own eco-system within their customer base and maximize their loyalty program.

What happened next

Reduced labor by 8% and shifted orders to their branded digital channel

With NCR and i3 Verticals as partners, Blu Jam is improving profitability, positioning itself for growth and building customer loyalty with innovative, easy-to-use digital customer experiences. They’ve moved to self-service, QR code-based ordering, which has reduced labor requirements by 8%. Also 95% of their pickup orders are now coming in directly through their website. This has enabled Blu Jam to eliminate some of the added costs associated with using third-party marketplaces for online ordering, passing this savings back to their customers when they order via Blu Jam’s digital channel.