How McDonald's is Embracing Digital Transformation and the Metaverse

Written By: Paresa Noble
Date: June 24, 2022

Businesses around the world, large and small, are undergoing digital transformations at a record rate given the pace which technology seems to be evolving. From the Metaverse to artificial intelligence, there are countless ways organizations are keeping themselves relevant during these changing times. Whether it's in the public or private sector, the restaurant industry or the manufacturing and supply chain world, every organization is at the point of evolving with the times. It's those who stay ahead of the needs who see success and lead their industries in production.

Take McDonald's, for instance.

We know Mcdonald's as the beloved and nostalgic burger joint, yet they are also investing heavily in digital transformation. They have since created their own internal, digital transformation team to continue their effort to serve their customers quickly and efficiently. What started as a team of 3 has evolved into a team of 130 tech-savvy professionals that work behind the scenes to shave off customer wait times and improve overall operations in each of their stores through the use of technology.

Mcdonald's started in 1955 as a fast-food restaurant built around the process of speed and efficiency to get customers in and out quickly. It began with people taking orders at the counter, and it had become a more tech-driven process that brings the promise of a speedy and delicious meal. Digital transformation has only helped McDonald's to speed up their service while still providing the quality that their customers have come to expect from them. They've managed to do this by implementing digital ordering kiosks, mobile apps, and table service in some of their stores.

In recent years, they invested hundreds of millions of dollars into their dynamic menu boards powered by machine learning. This AI-driven touch-screen ordering system would tailor each ordering experience to the customer based on real-time data points such as the time of day, weather, and buyer behavior. They took it one step further by implementing an AI voice recognition technology that would use natural language processes to take orders. According to Forbes, these efforts resulted in shaving down a whole minute in customer wait times, and it improved the accuracy and order process in many ways.

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Today, Mcdonald's is exploring different ways they can enter the Metaverse. They have recently filed patents in a declaration that they are in the midst of developing "virtual restaurants."

The Metaverse is a virtual shared space where people can meet, interact, and do business. For Mcdonald's, this would be a way for their customers to order their food without ever having to leave their homes. This would require them to create an avatar that would represent them in the virtual world. Customers would then be able to customize their orders and pay for their meals all within the app.

Beyond the Metaverse, Mcdonald's is also exploring how they can develop NFTs and drive additional revenue in a completely virtual world. These pursuits are all a testament to what a progressive and ever-evolving corporation looks like as new technologies continue to take hold in this new era of connectivity.

Mcdonald's is not the only company looking into the Metaverse. Other companies such as Microsoft and Amazon are also exploring the possibility of creating a presence within this digital world. However, Mcdonald's is in a unique position to capitalize on the Metaverse due to its already-established brand identity and their customer-facing offerings. If McDonald's can create a successful presence within the Metaverse, it could be a game-changer for the fast-food chain and arguably the industry as a whole.

If you are considering ways to keep your organization at the forefront of emerging technology, don't hesitate to reach out to us. We are here as an informal sounding board to help you understand your current capabilities and what is needed to forge the pathway to your organization's future.

Paresa Noble
As a seasoned digital transformation, legal, and finance copywriter, Paresa has enabled businesses large and small to share their ideas and develop as thought leaders within their respective industries. Paresa's entrepreneurial agency experience has given her insights into the nuances of business development and the efficiencies that artificial intelligence and emerging technologies bring to the table.
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