News Briefs

  • 4/1/2023

    QSR Automations Recognized for Excellence in Customer Service

    QSR Automations customer service team

    QSR Automations earned recognition for excellence in customer service and support.

    At MURTEC, QSR Automations’ VP of Hardware Solutions and Support, Kathi Klein, received fHospitality Technology ’s 2023 Top Women in Technology Lifetime Achievement Award. 

    During her more than 30 years in the restaurant technology industry – half of those at QSR Automations–Klein has amassed incomparable knowledge in understanding and troubleshooting kitchen display, front-of-house, and the associated hardware and networking platforms needed to run them. 

    But what truly sets Klein apart is her natural ability to nurture relationships and foster talent, which has made her an effective leader in QSR Automations’ Support Services Team. During her long tenure at QSR Automations, Klein has built one of the industry’s strongest and most effective support teams. In fact, under Klein’s guidance, the team has received a 99 percent satisfaction rate from customers in 2021, and last year handled more than 16,000 inbound and outbound calls, which earned them a bronze award for Excellence in Customer Service from the 2022 Stevie Awards. 

    This was the third bronze Stevie award for the team, as last fall, Klein accepted two additional bronze awards from the Stevie Women in Business Awards on behalf of QSR Automations–one for excellence in customer service, and the other for growth. QSR Automations was selected for these honors from more than 1,500 nominations from around the world.

    “Just as our technology is the heart of a restaurant kitchen, our people are truly the heart of this business,” said Angela Leet, CEO of QSR Automations. “My colleagues are passionate about innovation both in and out of the office, and it’s immensely gratifying to see them recognized for these achievements.”

    QSR Automations, headquartered in Louisville, Ky., with offices in the United Kingdom, is a global industry leader in kitchen automation and guest management services.

  • 2/6/2023

    Salad and Go Expands in Texas

    Salad and Go  salad and iced tea

    Up and coming QSR  Salad and Go  is expanding in Texas with three new locations opening in February in the Houston markets of Katy, Richmond and League City.

    The Katy store located opened February 1, the Richmond location at  is set to open February 17, and the League City store plans to open its doors on February 22. These new locations will mark the start of rapid brand expansion across the Greater Houston area.

    These suburbs were strategically selected as ideal markets for Salad and Go as some of the fastest growing communities in the region. Conveniently located in some of Houston's most popular suburbs, the new locations will provide fresh, high-quality meals with quick and easy convenience at an affordable price.

    As Salad and Go continues growing its national presence with a strong focus on Arizona, Texas, Oklahoma, and Nevada, the brand's expansive growth has it on a positive trajectory to provide fresh and affordable food to communities in more than 125 locations by the end of 2023. Houston is the next step in the brand's expansion across Texas with plans to open additional stores in the market throughout the new year.

    Salad and Go's chef-curated menu provides guests with food for any time of the day by offering a variety of delicious and healthy items including salads, wraps, breakfast burritos and soup as well as beverages including hand-crafted lemonades, teas and cold brew coffees.

    Salad and Go ensures each meal contains fresh, quality ingredients while keeping prices low by vertically integrating operations and distribution, and sourcing ingredients directly from high-quality local farmers and suppliers whenever possible. The brand's mission to make fresh, nutritious food convenient and affordable for ALL extends beyond its stores and is demonstrated in the work the brand does to donate 4,000 meals every week to those in need, as well as in partnerships with nonprofits to support and fundraise for various worthy causes.

  • 4/11/2023

    Rodd Hotels & Resorts Chooses Optii for Preventative Maintenance Solution

    logo, company name

    Optii Solutions, a hotel operations software, announced that its customer Rodd Hotels & Resorts has expanded its technology stack with the addition of Optii’s Preventative Maintenance solution that was launched last year.

    Rodd Hotels & Resorts, with 7 properties in Canada, has been a customer of Optii since early 2022 when they chose Optii as its hotel operations solution for housekeeping, service, and internal communications. The chain has embraced the solutions to tackle challenges unique to its seasonal properties. With Optii Preventative Maintenance, they’ll benefit from time savings automation, greater insight, and greater asset life.

    The addition of Optii Preventative Maintenance means Rodd Hotels & Resorts will be leveraging Optii’s full suite of solutions to support its hotel operation. The latest solution will help properties set and enforce maintenance standards with the industry’s most robust checklists feature. Improved asset and equipment management will improve engineering and maintenance productivity, while giving property and above-property leadership greater insight, and ability to make informed investment decisions.

    Bobbi Lawlor-White, CFO, Rodd Hotels & Resorts, said: When realizing that we needed a solution for our engineering and maintenance, the choice to go with Optii was simple. Our partnership with Optii has been extremely successful and positive. We have made numerous gains with their housekeeping, service, and chat solutions. Not only has it increased our productivity, and helped alleviate staffing challenges, but I have also come to rely on Optii data for my budgeting process. We are really excited to extend similar benefits to our engineering department with Optii Preventative Maintenance.”

    Katherine Grass, CEO, Optii Solutions, said: “When we set out to build Optii Preventative Maintenance, we knew we wanted to apply the same unique approach as we have with our housekeeping solution. Customers have come to rely on Optii to improve productivity, empower staff, and get deep insight into their operation. We knew we couldn’t give them any less with Preventative Maintenance. Having forward-thinking operators such as Rodd Hotels & Resorts choose Optii for Preventative Maintenance, gives me the confidence that we have succeeded.”

  • 4/11/2023

    Square's Latest Round of New Features Includes Key Integrations

    Square couple of diners

    Square unveiled an integrated spring product release, introducing a bevy of new features across its entire product ecosystem.

    For restaurants, some of the new product highlights include the OpenTable and Square for Restaurants integration. This lets restaurants leverage reservations to maximize revenue while delivering more personalized hospitality.

    “We’re a tea room in St. Louis that offers afternoon tea service alongside a retail store, and we use Square as our point-of-sale for both our restaurant and retail experience,” said Peter James, Business Operations Manager at London Tea Room in St. Louis, Missouri."...Now, Square’s integration with OpenTable has further upleveled our reporting by making it easy to see our per-cover spend by guests, and allowing us to view the sales from our restaurant revenue stream without needing to filter out the sales from our retail counter.”

    Square’s purpose-built vertical products stand on their own, and integrate within its ecosystem, to improve operations and automate key business task.

    Square for Restaurants sellers now have:

    • New Online Ordering Site Templates to optimize menu layouts for their unique needs, and new Modifier Images to bring photos into menu modifiers (i.e. extra chicken) to show customers their options and drive higher average order values.

    • Photo Studio support for food photography to elevate restaurants’ online menus.

    • Facebook Food Ordering to let restaurants drive sales through their Facebook and Instagram Business Pages.

    • Improvements to Shift Reports to let managers declare cash tips without clocking out, enabling accountability and accurate accounting at any time of day.

    • Expanded ability to easily add manual and variable service charges, allowing restaurants to account for bag, delivery, or other service fees.

    • For employees and managers using Square Staff:
      • Square Payroll integration with Cash App Taxes: Square Payroll employees can now file taxes for free with automated W2 import into Cash App Taxes. Square Payroll notifies employees that their W2s are ready for digital download; then, employees can login to Cash App Taxes and securely import their W2, and complete and submit their tax forms.

      • The upcoming release of Team Member Badges will let sellers provide their teams with physical NFC badges to authenticate on Square POS hardware, while the new Square Shifts offering gives sellers more options to manage their teams with POS-integrated time tracking, tip-management solutions, scheduling, and payroll prep.

    • Square Loyalty is now seamlessly integrated with Apple Pay and Wallet, allowing sellers to offer personalized digital loyalty cards that their buyers can add to Apple Wallet. 
    • Gift Cards are now trackable in Square Profile, giving buyers better visibility into their available gift card balances while giving sellers increased redemptions and sales, and Gift Card Marketplaces API allows partners such as Thnks, Giftogram, and Trucentive to instantly list eGift Cards from Square sellers in public directories, giving Square sellers the same reach as bigger brands.
  • 4/11/2023

    Hcareers Launching Co-Branded AAHOA Career Website And ATS Solution Powered By Hcareers

    logo, company name

    Hcareers, a North American talent acquisition platform for the hospitality sector with an applicant tracking system (ATS), has created an exclusive turnkey technology solution to streamline and optimize how the Asian American Hotel Owners Association (AAHOA) membership recruits and retains talent. 

    Through the new Careers with AAHOA Members Powered by Hcareers career site, AAHOA Members will utilize an integrated solution with Hcareers and its applicant tracking system partner to provide a fully managed career site and distribution platform for recruiting hospitality talent. 

    “We are excited to further build upon our partnership with AAHOA and, in an industry first, provide AAHOA Members with a simple and seamless integrated solution to recruit hospitality talent and further build industry talent pools,” said Douglas Tutt, CEO of Hcareers. 

    The industry has undergone significant departures since the pandemic, and sourcing new talent into the industry is a critical cornerstone to its long-term success. 

    “We are excited to partner with Hcareers to provide a much-needed AAHOA Member benefit in a distribution platform for recruiting hospitality talent,” said AAHOA President & CEO Laura Lee Blake. “Labor shortages are plaguing us all. And they have only been exacerbated by COVID. This brand-new partnership will allow AAHOA to better serve the needs of its members and address the staffing challenges that have been an ongoing issue in the hospitality industry for the past several years.” 

  • 4/11/2023

    Carnival Corporation Announces Significant 2022 Sustainability Advances

    logo, carnival corp

    Carnival Corporation & plc released its 13th annual sustainability report, detailing industry-leading initiatives and momentum across environmental, social and governance focus areas. The report also describes significant progress made by the company toward its aspirations of carbon neutral operations by 2050 and a circular economy model focused on waste reduction, recycling and management. Titled "Sustainable from Ship to Shore," Carnival Corporation’s full 2022 report is available on the company's sustainability website at

    “As the global leader in the cruise industry, we are setting the pace with the industry’s smartest solutions for sustainable cruising that will help deliver on our aggressive roadmap to reduce our carbon impact, maximize our use of resources and further enhance our operations to be even more efficient by 2030,” said Josh Weinstein, CEO and chief climate officer for Carnival Corporation. “Our future depends on us being good corporate citizens and stewards of the environment, because without the incredible communities, healthy marine ecosystems, and scenic spaces we operate in, it would be impossible to deliver unforgettable happiness to our guests through extraordinary cruise vacations.”

    In 2022, as almost 100% of Carnival Corporation’s full fleet returned to guest cruise operations, the company continued prioritizing sustainability, making major strides toward its 2030 goals and setting the pace with industrywide leadership in pursuing carbon-neutral operations by 2050 – well ahead of current International Maritime Organization targets. Throughout the year, the company achieved important milestones in environmental performance, including in the key areas of decarbonization, food waste and single-use plastic reduction, detailed below.

    Advancements in Decarbonization Pathway

    Carnival Corporation remains the only major cruise operator producing fewer greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions today than in 2011, despite adding substantial guest capacity to its fleet since that time. The company is on track to achieve a 40% reduction in carbon intensity by 2030 (vs. 2008), and a 20% reduction in carbon intensity by 2030 vs. 2019, resulting from strong momentum in its four-part decarbonization strategy: fleet optimization; energy efficiency; itinerary efficiency; and new technologies and alternative fuels. Collectively, these strategic initiatives are expected to drive a 15% reduction in fuel consumption per available lower berth day (ALBD) in 2023, along with a 15% reduction in emissions per ALBD, both relative to 2019. 

    Additionally, the company completed its first inventory of Scope 3 “value-chain” emissions associated with purchased goods and services, fuel and energy distribution/delivery, and waste management, among others. Using the GHG Protocol standard, in the future, the company will track these emissions annually vs. a full-year 2019 operations baseline.

    Other 2022 decarbonization highlights include:

    Investing in Energy-Efficient Solutions:

    ·Service Power Packages: Continued the fleetwide rollout of eco-friendly upgrades (LED lights, HVAC automation, variable speed drives on pumps and fans, etc.) for an average 5% fuel consumption savings per ship, and expected to generate over $100 million in annual fuel cost savings upon completion).

    ·Shore Power: 57% of the global fleet is now able to “plug in” to reduce emissions and noise in port where connections to electric power are available.

    ·Air Lubrication Systems (ALS): Expanded this technology to more ships to help them glide on air bubbles with ~5% less friction, for fuel consumption savings and reduced emissions (five ships installed, six in progress and eight on order).

    Pioneering New Technologies & Alternative Fuels:

    ·Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG): Leading the industry in new fuel propulsion with eight LNG-capable ships in service with three more on order to account for 20% of fleet capacity by 2025.

    ·Batteries & Fuel Cells: Piloting the world’s largest ever battery installation on a passenger ship with a first-of-its-kind lithium-ion battery storage system on AIDAprima and pioneering a new generation of power in the industry with fuel cell technology using methanol-derived hydrogen on AIDAnova.

    ·Biofuels: Leading the industry in piloting biofuels as a replacement for fossil fuel with successful trials on AIDAprima and Holland America Line’s Volendam.

    ·Partnerships: Driving decarbonization pathways for the industry as part of the Mærsk Mc-Kinney Møller Center for Zero Carbon Shipping, Getting to Zero Coalition and Methane Abatement in Maritime Innovation Initiative, among others.

    Contributing to Circular Economy

    Carnival Corporation has continued optimizing its circular economy model to use fewer resources, produce less waste, and maximize recycling. 2022 highlights include:

    Shrinking the Company’s Food Print:

    ·Surplus Food: Achieving per-passenger food waste reduction of more than 30% in 2022 (vs. 2019) and establishing a new goal to reduce food waste by 40% per person by 2025.

    ·Biodigesters: Leading the industry with over 600 food biodigesters installed on ships to break down and liquify uneaten food and sustainably return it to nature.

    ·Dehydrators: Installing 25-plus food dehydrators across the fleet to remove excess water from leftover food, reducing waste volume by upwards of 90%.

    Removing & Replacing Items with Sustainable Alternatives:

    ·Single Use Items: Reduced single-use plastic by more than 50%, removing over 500 million single-use items since 2018 and replaced items with sustainable alternatives.

    ·Supply Chain Partners: Continued collaborating with supply chain partners on sustainable product strategies, such as purchasing products in bulk instead of buying single-use containers and reducing packaging volumes.

    In addition to achievements in environmental performance, Carnival Corporation continued cultivating a workforce mirroring the diversity of the 700 ports and destinations it visits worldwide. Of the 800 top-performing global employers listed as the World’s Best Employers for talent development, gender equality and social responsibility, Carnival Corporation was the only cruise company. It was also named one of the World’s Top Female-Friendly Companies.

    “Our approach to sustainability is backed by science and driven by data, which allows us to take decisive actions that make a truly meaningful impact and inspire real change,” said Weinstein. “It is a monumental undertaking that requires collective focus and tireless dedication of our entire organization. We are fortunate to have a global team of 160,000 talented people who are passionately committed to honoring the integrity of every ocean we sail, place we visit, and life we touch. We are incredibly proud of the considerable progress we have made so far and look forward to continuing our collective work together toward a sustainable future for cruising and tourism.”

    Carnival Corporation's 2022 sustainability report is based on the widely recognized Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) standard, incorporates the company’s third annual disclosure in line with the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB), and highlights the company’s disclosure in accordance with the Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures (TCFD). For more information on the company’s long-term sustainability vision and progress under its six focus areas: climate action; circular economy; sustainable tourism; good health and well-being; diversity, equity and inclusion; and biodiversity and conservation – visit Carnival Corporation’s dedicated sustainability website (

  • Show MoreShow More
This ad will auto-close in 10 seconds