April 12, 2022 · less than 3 min read
The great resignation? Chipotle has an automation solution.
Say hey to Chippy
Not a fan of robotic customer service? We’ve got bad news for you.
Fed up with labor shortages impacting its operations, Chipotle is turning to machines to get the job done. If you’re Cali-based, you could soon find your chips being prepared by ‘Chippy’, a fry-making machine designed to plug the labor shortage. A hard worker, but probably not great at the staff party.
“The restaurant industry had a labor gap before the pandemic… the pandemic just accelerated this big gap between the number of jobs and the available labor,” said Miso Robotics CEO, Michael Bell. And with no sign of the labor shortage easing, we could see plenty more Chippy’s behind the scenes at Chipotle very soon.
The great automation
Labor automation has been brewing for a while, but it seems the mass shortages will finally be the catalyst for widespread robot adoption. From warehouses to supply chains to customer-facing roles, it’s time to forget about the great resignation – the great automation is here.
But what will this transition mean for the economy? Well, it could be a boost to many hospitality businesses feeling the labor pinch. Robots don’t need a minimum wage, besides their maintenance costs, meaning that firms won’t need to inflate their payrolls to keep things ticking over.
But for workers, could the great automation mean that there are fewer jobs available in the low-wage economy? Much of the eventual impact of automation is speculation for the moment, but the rise of robots could mean a big change for employment figures in the US.
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