The rise of delivery and demise of cash prompted by the Covid-19 pandemic have served up business expansion for cashless tipping platform Tipjar.
Tipjar, the brainchild of BrewDog retail director James Brown, enables the digital payment of tips directly to staff members, which Brown explains gives transparency to customers and staff members as well as offering an alternative as less people use cash.
When Covid-19 hit, the business had been about to go to market. The founder explained: "We'd spent a year and a half building our system and were ready to launch it to market. Initially we genuinely thought we might have to mothball the business or pause everything and reduce costs to then relaunch when the industry got back on its feet.
"But we had the technology for the Hospitality Workers Emergency Fund, which we did with Hospitality Action, and we realised people were struggling to understand how furlough pay worked, so we launched the first pay calculator and had like 50,000 hits on day one.
"At that point we started to get more clients, particularly using Tipjar for takeaway. If you do delivery right now, without Tipjar there's no way for your staff to be rewarded for good service, a good product or high-quality ingredients. With our system you can put a QR code on the box or embed it in the online ordering system and customers can tip."
Tipjar is now in more than 250 UK restaurants and Brown said demand is showing no signs of relenting.
He added: "We're excited about growth and we've just launched a Crowdcube campaign to raise funds. When we first started, people said ‘this is a good idea, but we're still getting cash tips right now, probably this could go in in the next year'. What's happened with Covid is that the five-year journey towards cashless for many business has happened in 12-13 weeks. So, we're getting inundated from large and small businesses."
See next week's edition of The Caterer for an interview with Brown.
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