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New membership-based community dedicated to restaurant technology brings restaurant operators and technology companies together to shape industry standards and share technical guidance and more.

Claim Your Seat at the Table

By Angela Diffly, Director, Membership and Business Development, Restaurant Technology Network - 10/29/2018

Besides the usual stellar content lineup and amazing barbecue, something extra special was on the menu at HT’s annual MURTEC Executive Summit in Nashville a couple of weeks ago. The secret sauce, which has been stewing for many months in HT’s back kitchen, was revealed on the summit’s first full day of sessions. An audience full of C- and VP-level restaurant technology executives and technology suppliers snagged the industry’s first look at Restaurant Technology Network (RTN), a membership-based community aimed at fueling restaurant technology innovation through workgroups, standards development, certification programs, and so much more.  

Our vision is crystal clear. In an industry built on service and entrepreneurial spirit, purpose-built technology fuels success. The Restaurant Technology Network aspires to help restaurant professionals and solution providers work together to solve problems large and small and inspire bold ideas for the future. Our logo is bright orange bleeding into red, indicating this is the place where industry conversations ignite and heat up. Our tagline is made up of three little words encompassing one big promise. Join. Share. Thrive.

Where The Magic Happens
We know for a fact that when technology leaders, CTOs, CIOs, IT Staff, work together with the industry’s brightest software developers, architects and engineers, magic happens. We’ve seen it with our friends at Hospitality Technology Next Generation (HTNG), a membership-based organization serving hoteliers and technology suppliers. For 17 years, HTNG has hosted and executed successful workgroups and published 150+ industry specifications. Through a strategic partnership with RTN, HTNG will replicate with restaurants what’s already working on the hotel side. The overarching goal is to advance the industry, solving the problems that keep restaurant executives up at night. For technology companies, workgroups represent an unprecedented opportunity to design-to-spec for some of the most innovative brands in the restaurant space.

Taking the stage to tell attendees a little more about workgroups was HTNG’s current CEO Michael Blake. As the former CIO for Hyatt and later Commune Hotels & Resorts, Blake experienced first-hand what it was like to roll up his sleeves alongside technology companies to solve industry problems. He admitted that he found HTNG workgroups invaluable and used them regularly as an extension of his research and development teams while serving top hotel brands. A pretty powerful endorsement, and one echoed by many top hotel technologists continuing to shape the industry through workgroups. Workgroups are one of RTN’s cornerstone member benefits and will gear up in early 2019.

Recipe For Success
In addition to workgroups, RTN will offer members advanced education and industry certification programs. By partnering with Restaurant CIOs, RTN provides certification programs on topics ranging from Technology Procurement, Restaurant Technology & Tools, Restaurant Data, Technology Finance, Technology HR and Technology Management. Restaurant CIOs founders Joe Tenczar and Brian Pearson have over 50 years of combined experience in executive technology leadership, and they’re packaging that expertise into their newest venture, cio.school, whereby they’ll provide technology learning tracks specific to the restaurant industry (both digitally and live) and RTN will act as the certifying body.

We were fortunate to have both Joe and Brian at MURTEC Executive Summit, where they shared their palpable passion for cio.school certification programs. They’re on a mission to help restaurant technology executives enhance their leadership skills, advance their careers and better serve the brands they support. Students completing coursework and passing the required tests will receive an official RTN certification badge, which formalizes expertise to the industry.

RTN Technology Procurement Certification via cio.school coursework starts in January 2019, and will cover topics such as understanding the RFP process, establishing success criteria, weighting and identifying candidates, communication process, support/SLAs, labs, pilots, rollouts and calculating TCO/ROI. If you’re interested in this certification, visit restauranttechnologynetwork.com/#certification-section to enroll or to learn more.

Winning Ingredients
In addition to workgroups and certification programs, RTN will offer other unique member benefits, like networking, industry-segmented research, thought leadership, company exposure, career opportunities, and special programs at MURTEC, just to name a few.

  • Membership will soon be open, and our members-only platform with exclusive access to tools and resources will launch in January 2019.
  • Members signing on early (in 2018) will enjoy access to benefits as they’re “turned on”, early recognition on the RTN website, and early annual memberships will not renew until January 2020.
  • We are currently recruiting Board of Governors and Vendor Council members. Please reach out to me directly ([email protected]), or complete the form

Until then, there are many ways to let us know you’re interested in membership. Try any of these:

Easy-Peasy!
Simply enter your email in the pop-up window “Take Your Seat At The Table” on the RTN website.
 

Tell Us More.
To tell us what programs you’re interested in, including Board of Governors or Vendor Council here.  

Get Certified.
For industry certifications, complete the cio.school form

We’re Listening.
Contact us, or submit general feedback, here:

We’re Sharing.
Follow Us on LinkedIn & Twitter (@RestTechNet)