Dominos Pizza Introduces Order Tracker: I Like ItBY: Edward Domain | December 21, 2010
I am an entrepreneur running my own startup and as such I work. A lot. For instance, it is 8:19 p.m. as I write this post from the awesome SYNC Tech Center where I work from and I am the only one here.
Keeping me company? Music on Pandora and my Dominos Pizza with mushroom and feta cheese.
“WHY,” you are likely thinking, “IS DOMAIN WRITING A POST ON DOMINOS PIZZA?”
That’s a very good question- but I wish you would stop thinking it in all caps. It’s very annoying and poor etiquette.
I am writing about my pizza ordering experience tonight not to complain about what went wrong but to talk about everything that went right. In a world where customer service universally sucks, my experience tonight was so easy, pleasant and hassle free I just became a Dominos customer that will order again.
I knew if I didn’t eat tonight at some point I’d crash and I still have a lot of work to do so I thought I’d order a pizza and Dominos’ price fit my entrepreneurial, bootstrapped budget-conscious mind. Don’t be mistaken- for a long, long time I thought Dominos pizza quality was, shall we say, the equivalent of just putting sauce on the cardboard box it comes in and eating that.
Like lots of other people, I’ve seen the new commercials for Dominos preaching the message that they learned their lesson and improved quality. I have also had some Dominos lately at some tech meetups and I have to say, it’s good!
Fast forward to tonight- I ordered my pizza online and then I was greeted by the Dominos Pizza Order Tracker:
How many times have you ordered a pizza from somewhere and sit there for over an hour wondering where the heck it was? You’d call the pizza place and they’d say something like, “the driver has it” and you just knew the driver didn’t. Or that he was 12 zip codes away from you and even if the pizza ever made it to your house it would be lukewarm or cold? Yeah, me too.
So I finish my order online and watched the Pizza Tracker, and it even has the functionality to let you, as it says, “keep surfing and track your order.” I didn’t install it but I did leave the tab open as I was curious to see if this thing would be remotely accurate. As I kept checking back, sure enough as each stage was completed the corresponding box on the meter would turn red to show it was done.
I even got messages on the status bar letting me know Angelita got my order and put it in the oven. When it was done, I was told that Paulo had left the store and was on his way with my delicious pizza pies:
This was going to be my test. So far everything seemed normal, but I wondered if the tracker was just a computer automated guesstimate or if it actually tracked my order.
Ten minutes later my pizza arrived and I have to say, I was shocked. Paulo came on up to the third floor and even called me “sir.” When was the last time a pizza delivery driver was so polite?
I couldn’t believe it…and the pizza was nice and hot.
As Paulo left it dawned on me that I was so stunned because my pizza ordering experience was flawless from start to finish. Not one hiccup. Not one.
Somebody ought to tell Matt Maloney and Mike Evans about the order tracker….if other food delivery outfits implemented this little bit of genius AND coupled it with great customer service like Dominos did for me tonight, they’d have a big win on their hands.
Angelita, Paulo, Dominos: Well done, and thanks for the great pizza!!!
Edward DomainEdward is the founder and CEO of Techli.com. He is a writer, U.S. Army veteran, serial entrepreneur and chronic early adopter. Having worked for startups in Silicon Valley and Chicago, he founded, grew and successfully exited his own previous startup and loves telling the stories of innovators. Email: [email protected] | @EdwardDomain
Ed: I have become a HUGE fan of Dominos in recent days (mostly because I realized that they offer mediums for $5.99, and they do cheeseless). And the order tracker ROCKS
I don't work at Dominoes, but I've helped set up the IT part of other tracking systems. Here's how they work: Each order is tracked, by order number, bar code or status. For instance, you place your order, and the clock starts ticking. The order displays on a screen for cooks to prepare. Once the pizza is made and in the oven, the cook indicates that it is done and it both disappears from the display and tracks that the preparation stage is complete. The next display is for the person that cuts the pizza, put it in a box and sets it up for delivery. Again, as the task is completed, the order is timestamped. The next person is probably a supervisor that assigns the delivery to a driver, or the driver signing out with the pizza. Either way, the time of the event is again tracked. All told, you have a relatively limite dnumber of steps thatare always repeated through the creation, cooking and delivery of a pizza, and can be made available online for customers to review. Note that this is a variation of the 'order status' that UPS, FedEx and other delivery services have been providing for several years, but applied to fast food. Of course, the real goal of the system is for upper management to be able to track service levels within each restaurant - but once the data is available real time, why not make it available to customers, and cut down on complaint phone call re: "Where's my pizza?"
Right on fxgeorges- because I was impressed that my pizza showed up on time with no hassle- its sad that is the exception rather than the rule, but it worked like a charm and you are right- I am guessing less "Where are my pizza?" calls are good for the chain