Helping a PE-backed casual dining chain to move faster by implementing an Agile menu development process

The challenge

An established casual dining chain was suffering from adverse market conditions combined with an undifferentiated proposition, while inconsistency across food, drink and service was impacting customer engagement. With the brand about to embark on a CVA, it needed to be bold and move faster, and the private equity backers of the chain also wanted to identify ‘quick wins’ as well as long term priorities for the transformation plan.

Our approach

We across three areas of focus: Business Planning, Proposition and Agile Menu Development.

We carried out an in-depth diagnostic phase to review the transformation plan and spent time in restaurants to build a clear picture of the guest experience and operational performance.

We took an agile approach to the menu development, which included reviewing the current F&D offering in the context of the overall brand direction, partnering with menu layout specialists to drive commercial benefit, and the use of an agile experimentation process for menu development that was insight driven and customer focused.

The results

We delivered a clear process for dish development and identified three key areas to drive commercial benefit for menu development.

The client team was able to work quicker and more efficiently using agile tools and techniques, and the business had a clear understanding of the current customer and why they come to the restaurant.

We finalised an improved transformation plan based on bringing together rebranding, service and menu improvement activity.

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