Expanding Our Partnerships: El Pollo Loco

As businesses expand and grow, they often carry over outdated systems and platforms that don’t easily adapt to their expanding list of operational demands. One of Beyond’s clients, El Pollo Loco, struggled with back of house management after rapid expansion, but was able to remedy these issues by implementing our integrated suite of workforce management software.

El Pollo Loco Holdings operates and franchises about 500 restaurants under the El Pollo Loco banner, with 400 of those restaurants in the southwestern United States. Specializing in Mexican-style chicken dishes, the chain operates within the fastest growing segment of the restaurant industry—faster fast casual.

For several years, the company faced multiple internal process and procedural problems that impacted their bottom line. In 2016, El Pollo Loco started the search for a replacement of their home-grown platform for back of house management. After reviewing several competitors, they selected Beyond as their solution in 2017.

Beyond’s integrated suite is designed to help clients streamline operations by making data-driven decisions and streamline operations. The packages of applications include:

  • Hub – Connects one or more POS systems to consolidate real-time transaction data for accurate reporting and analytics.
  • Workforce – Builds staff schedules based on trends, shift preferences and labor forecasting with easy team communication.
  • Inventory – Quickly forecasts sales and manages inventory to help organize purchasing and eliminate waste.

 

Why did El Pollo Loco need better back-office management?

Previously, El Pollo Loco did not have a consistent process for developing and producing recipes. Different locations, and even employees, used multiple versions of recipes and did not track ingredients or waste. El Pollo Loco wasn’t updating case and pack changes, so something as simple as a vendor switching a product brand resulted in incorrect costs and usage. These inventory breakdowns were intensified by internal and cross-location communication issues.

 

What led to El Pollo Loco’s decision to choose Beyond as their partner?

The restaurant chain noted they were excited about Beyond’s “build and buy” management platform. Not only can El Pollo Loco purchase the proven applications they need, but with the Developers Portal, they can build their own. The custom reporting and analytics options also provide great flexibility to tailor the Beyond tools to their business needs.

Another benefit of the Beyond suite that excited the El Pollo Loco team was the in-app user experience. Since the experience is smooth and adaptable, it provided a seamless transition from their previous platform. With the mobile-first technology, El Pollo Loco employees can access Beyond applications on their preferred mobile device at any of their franchise locations.

 

How will Beyond increase efficiency for El Pollo Loco?

El Pollo Loco will use Beyond’s management platform to address each of their key pain points. Restaurant operators can utilize the Beyond Inventory package to organize a self-service system for stocking items and tracking food waste. The Recipes app will eliminate menu consistency issues by helping El Pollo Loco quickly build recipes with efficient ingredient lists, customize their menus and easily consolidate nutritional information. Internal communication problems will be minimized with the Team social networking platform equipped with messaging boards, alerts and file storage.

It is an exciting time for both the Beyond and the El Pollo Loco teams as they work together to transition from the ‘proof of concept’ phase to the complete rollout of all 290 restaurant locations. District tests are in progress as data flow is confirmed and the development of additional features are at the forefront of the implementation.

It’s no easy task to transition a restaurant chain with hundreds of locations from out-of-date systems to a new technology platform. El Pollo Loco took a leap, and we are honored to be their chosen partner. Our Beyond team is proud to help them increase efficiency and we look forward to enhancing their success for years to come.

 

Learn how Beyond can help your restaurant make data-driven decision that will save you time and money.