Noodles & Company offers its customers delicious meals served fresh, fast and friendly. While the company has an old-fashioned commitment to real food and real cooking for real flavors, they are also recognized as a technological leader in the hospitality industry.
In 1995, Noodles & Company opened its first restaurant in Denver, Colorado. By summer of 2014, Noodles & Company opened its 400th location. The company, known for delivering fresh ingredients and flavors from around the world, is also consistently acknowledged for its corporate culture and focus on the customer experience.
In summer 2014, Noodles & Company VP-IT Corey Kline sought to perfect his recipe for the ideal network to support this standard-setting organization. The next generation network would feature four key ingredients: Fast, accessible Guest Wi-Fi, enhanced reliability, increased security… and reduced operational costs.
“When you think of ‘guest experience’ in the restaurant business, ‘network’ might not be the first thing that comes to mind,” noted Kline. “However, in today’s interconnected world, the network plays an integral role in the dining experience.
From our complimentary guest Wi-Fi to our Noodles Rewards program to fast, secure check out, the network must offer many of the same qualities as our staff: accessibility, approachability, trustworthiness and responsiveness while remaining unobtrusive.”
In addition to day-to-day network and cybersecurity management, the act of upgrading the primary connectivity at each of more than 500 stores can be a daunting task. From processing credit cards to IP-based telephony, today’s quick service restaurant is almost entirely network dependent. Any network disruption inconveniences customers and impacts the bottom line. To ensure the network upgrade proceeded smoothly, Kline brought in managed network and security services provider SageNet.
Headquartered in Tulsa, OK, SageNet designs, implements, manages and protects fast, secure and reliable networks that empower organizations to achieve their core business objectives. SageNet’s integrated network infrastructure, dedicated personnel and innovative products and services suite have set the standard for Managed Network Services. The company’s customer base represents many of the nation’s leading retail, healthcare, financial and energy companies, including many of the country’s largest restaurant chains.
“What sets SageNet apart from the rest is their holistic approach and their customer support team,” said Kline. “They do so much more than provisioning circuits. They integrate our Wi-Fi and VoIP, prioritize voice traffic, manage the network and provide proactive support. But perhaps most importantly, they understand our network and our business. And they listened to our needs and concerns, as well as our vision for the future.”
SageNet provisioned broadband connectivity to every Noodles and Company location. As one of North America’s leading managed network solutions partners, SageNet manages more than 220,000 individual network endpoints nationwide.
SageNet’s cable-first approach meant that SageNet first endeavored to deliver cable-based connectivity to every site wherever possible. For locations beyond the reach of cable service providers, SageNet then determined and provisioned the best (fastest and most-affordable) alternative broadband technology available.
As part of the network upgrade SageNet replaced the chain’s routers with next-generation devices that integrate the company’s highly successful guest WiFi capabilities, Voice-over-IP, and Unified Threat Management capabilities. SageNet is also providing its CompleteConnect™ managed network services that include complete proactive management and monitoring on both an enterprise and store-level basis.
SageNet managed all aspects of the network roll-out, from provisioning and installation, to turn-up and troubleshooting, as well as ongoing management and monitoring. As an added benefit, with the SageNet solution, the company receives a single clearly-defined monthly bill for all circuits.
By switching to the SageNet managed, cable-first approach, Noodles & Company was able to integrate Voice over IP, support its innovative guest Wi-Fi program, increase network reliability and security … all while reducing cost.
“At Noodles & Company, we pride ourselves on adopting and harnessing the latest technologies to enhance the guest experience, as well as to improve the operational efficiency of the workplace,” noted Kline. “We’re also a pretty lean and agile organization. This means that our IT team is generally stretched pretty thin. Having a managed network solutions partner like SageNet is essential. We rely on their 24/7 US-based NOCs and responsive staff as an extension of our own team. As it is within Noodles & Company, technology is a tool, but it is the human touch that leads to success.”
- Faster, More Reliable and Secure Network
- Reduced Monthly Costs
The digital drive-thru experience is so efficient that traditional fast-casual and sit-down restaurants have begun adding drive-thru windows to some stores.
Place-based signage refers to the use of digital displays to communicate information or advertising messages in specific physical locations.
Because they are wirelessly linked to the data network, ESLs create the potential for a wide range of operational benefits through increased in-store digitalization.