This week we have a special two segment episode and in the first and major part of the show, we are joined by Tommy, you notice the founder and managing director of ops, Analytica and operations management platform designed for the service industry. It's a platform that allows you to standardize operations by digitizing processes and procedures, and assures the app consistent operations on a daily basis. It's a fascinating platform, and Tommy goes into great detail explaining how it works, providing some real world examples. Tommy's had an interesting career as he started working in the hospitality industry at a young age, and even spent a number of years working as a stand up comedian. Make sure you check out the site at Ops analytica.co. Or you can also contact Tommy on LinkedIn. And all those links are in the show notes as well. On the second segment of the show, which is around the 45 minute mark of this episode, you'll want to answer returns to the podcast for a short recurring segment that will happen every few weeks. On this first installment ulana talks about some of the creeps she encountered while working on the Vegas Strip. Plus a few additional funny stories that she has to share from earlier in her career. Make sure you check out your Lena at her website cocktail dot vision and enjoy the show.
Okay, we are back with another episode of the industry podcast My name is Kip with me is Dan what's happening buddy
you know enjoying this is the start of week three for back in the office or back to prison camp is like calling. You know enjoying that drive to have an extra couple of hours in my day for no apparent reason. Yeah, my boss is in Europe. So make sense to me. So now I can come from the office in a cramped room as opposed to comfort of my home. So first of all problems aside Oh good.
Sounds amazing. And today you got to fucking drive through a snowstorm in April. Yeah, that's
right. That's better. How's it going with you?
Things are good things are picking up again at the in the bar industry people are coming back out again. So it's good. And we should mention that if you want to come visit me and sometimes Dan at one of these bars in Kitchener and Babylon sisters and Uptown Waterloo Winebar and then the speakeasy shorter run downtown Kitchener. So you can follow us on Twitter run bar and Instagram Babylon sisters bar as well on Instagram to find out what's going on and where you can get the password for the speakeasy
etc. Yeah, and I'll put the links as always in the show notes to everything we talked about. So we
have a great guest as always coming up we have actually we're trying on a new thing on this episode. We are we have Tony Knowles coming up very shortly to talk to us a little bit about Ops analytics.co. And after that we are having an old favorite coming back who's going to be doing some spots appearance as far as once every four episodes or so. Yeah, Elena antar will be joining us in a little bit as well. So that's something to look forward to. If you'd like to show the best way you can help us out is to subscribe rate and review as well. If you want to be a guest on the show, then you can email us at info at the industry podcast dot club, or you can DM us directly at info at the industry podcast on Instagram. And a lot of good episodes in the archives. You should probably check out who we had recently time miners.
Jules aromas was on fire this one man really? Yeah, it was a Mariano Fernanda Cardoso, and the answer was 103 and then Matt Percy Leigh and of course Justin Val, and then Episode 100, Matt Houston and your wife Janine Saunders.
Right. So check out all those episodes in the archives rate review, subscribe. The artwork for our show is done by Zack Hanna at Zack hanna.co. You should check out all his work on you can follow him on Instagram as well. So a big shout out as always to him, and we got a big show so we may as well get to it. Tom, you know is thanks for joining us on the industry podcast.
Thanks, guys. I'm looking forward to it. So you got a snowstorm today?
Yeah, yeah. Welcome to Canada.
Yeah, it was like actually quite warm. Last week. We were hitting around 17 1819 Celsius, which is about 68 Fahrenheit or so around there. And then today it's snowing.
In Colorado and same thing you know, we get snow all the way through what three more major snows before it stops me. Yeah,
yeah. Well, I think we all just need to move to Florida. There's no rules there
was the best and we got to Ybor City smoke some cigars.
So let's just jump right into this. Basically you want to spend a lot of time talking about your company or the founder of ops analytics. Ops and elliptica Analytica sorry I already fucked it up. Obviously Analytica that's, it's just because I don't have my reading glasses. So, but let's talk a little bit about what offset a little bit does what you provide for the service industry.
Sure. So obviously, Analytica is an operations management platform. And what we do is we help take the guesswork out of running the business. Mainly, what we do is all those paper checklists and procedures, and all those things that we all have taped to the wall in our buildings that everybody likes to ignore, what we try to do is get those things off of the wall into the tablet, and then get them scheduled, and try to help the restaurant do a better job of running consistent operations, by kind of holding them accountable to doing all of those procedures, sort of every shift, right? With the hope that if we just control what we can control better and do a little bit better job of being consistent in our execution, we can get out of our own way, and we can ultimately take better care of the customer. And so that's kind of the premise behind it. I'll be honest with you, multi location operators seem to do better on the platform than single unit operators, especially if it's a like owner operator type situation. Because, you know, if you're an owner operator, you're usually under the mindset that I'm already here, why would I add paperwork to my life. But you know, when you start to have multiple units, then all of a sudden, you can't be in every unit every day. And you want to make sure your team is actually doing the things that they need to do to be safe and mostly clean and ready for guests.
Right? So does this expand into like inventory as well? Or is it mostly just temperature control, and like, and like sort of the site duties, policies or procedures,
it doesn't do inventory, per se, I mean, you could that it would be clunky, I'd rather just go get an inventory system, if you really want to do inventory, which most people hate doing, I remember hating doing inventory. But it's more about operations procedures on at the daily rest at the restaurant level. It's about ops procedures. But like, it's more than just a couple of checklists, like, it ends up being like you can do, you can have your cash out logs in there, you can have slip fall reports, and they're like, it's any, like, either repeatable process or data that you need to capture and report off of or do something with. But then when you get to some of the bigger chains, then they start using it as the way that they manage all of their locations. So they're looking at it more from the perspective of, hey, I've got some stupid scheduling rule in Vancouver, right, that I got to deal with. So like, so now I've got to like, make sure that they don't change the schedule within two weeks, or I'm gonna get five. So then they start going, Okay, I need to put in a procedure in place to make sure that we're not messing that thing up, or, Hey, we have this big LTO going on. And we're gonna have people coming into the restaurant and we're doing advertising, I want to make sure all the table tents are up, all the signage is correct. People program their registers. So it just all of a sudden, it kind of morphs, once people get a hold of it from just those daily checklists into this is how I manage all of my stores, all my operations across my entire chain. And that's what's exciting to see. You know, we've started with a couple guys that had three or four checklists, and now they have over 100 zones.
And the data itself, how's it viewed on the end user side? Is it like through dashboards? Or is it like a raw raw data dump of some sort, or
we have a failure, we have dashboards that really aggregate together all of the data, you can kind of look at, see where your problems are, and what's happening, and what's also what's doing really well. And then we also have a bunch of reports that are more like data grid reports that you get dumped into an Excel if you wanted to continue to do advanced analysis on it's like pivoting in or whatever.
So getting a little bit more granular, like how, like, let's talk a little bit about like, specifically what you'd be monitoring in these situations, like run through some of the specific things that you can do on your platform.
So what's cool about our platform, so Okay, first of all, if you're talking about like, I guess we could be loosely grouped into like, checklists, platforms, right. So the way you get data in is through a digital form, and then all the analytics and everything happens on the back. So what I would say is that for like our clients in the hospitality business, typical checklists that we're going to see from those guys are going to be some sort of opening procedure, both in the front of the house and an opening procedure in the kitchen, which could also include prep law prep lists, could also include just line checks, as well as food safety checks as well. And then you'll typically see those kind of opening checklists that are kind of going up to this shift, right. So those are what we call pre checklists. Those are your typical setup checklist. Those are the typical Uh, checks that you would be doing to make sure that you're ready for the rush, that's going to happen, you know, from 1130 to two or whatever it is. And then once the shift begins, occasionally people will do some flying checks during the shift. But it's not very often that people want to do that, because they don't want to pull people off the rush to be like, you know, checking taps, if everything was checked up until the time you should be good through the meal period, then you'll see some typical post checks, make sure you know that we kind of like start flipping from dinner to lunch in that kit use case. And then you'll see some, again, food safety and readiness checks going up into the dinner time. And then at the end of the day, you'll see your sort of typical closing checklist as well, where people are sort of this running the restaurant down, closing things down for the night and prepping for the next morning. So those are the kinds of checklists we do. And the system you can you can capture any kind of data, right, you can capture numbers for temperatures, so we can analyze temps to make sure that they're safe or not safe. We connect to digital thermometers in that use case, we can analyze, you know, true false is a typical checklist question, Did this happen? Yes or no? And then we can capture free texts, like logs? Like how was the weather today with Shift logs, you know, all those kinds of things, capture dates, and times, photos, pretty much you know, all of that kind of different information. And so you can build a checklist that contains all those different aspects. But what makes our platform unique is we have an amazing business logic engine. And so we can do things that no other checklists app can do from a logic perspective. So we can analyze temperatures, and then we can take you down an entire path of follow up questions like did you Okay, did you reheat this properly? Did you put it on ice? You know, we can we can step you through all these different attributes? And then, and then do you guys primarily talk to single unit operators or big chains? I
should ask them? Well, we talked to all sorts of different people. But I but generally, it's we haven't talked to too many even just owner operators yet. But I am obviously one. So I'm owner operator for two spots. And we have talked to a couple people who own their own businesses in like Brazil, Costa Rica, it's nice. Yeah. But generally, but we haven't talked to too many people who have owned like chains. So got it. Yeah. But I am sort of interested that like if I was going to look at that, and say, I'm the like, whoever gm of operations for a change, who's probably going to be dealing with this data. And rather than like the ownership group, which is probably a number of different people. Sure. Like you're looking at this data, so I can see say like, just to bring this into our area of the world, like you were mentioning that one of your restaurants that uses your product is Jack Astor's that's very familiar to listen to this show. Let's say you're the GM of operations for us chain of Jack Astor's in Ontario. So I'm looking at the data that you provided to me on my end that I can see like, oh, on Thursday, the April 24, the location in Brampton, let's say, did not meet the temp requirements of a certain dish or food or like a fridge or Yeah,
absolutely. And so but what we tried to do is this, because we're doing daily checklist, right, you know, food safety is not something we can like, wait on it, right? If you identify that, yeah, the ranch dressing is at seven degrees, which is not generally a good temperature of ranch dressing, then you don't like you don't have the option and a restaurant to get that deal with that after the rush right? At people stick with it. But then you know, I'll deal with it later. Yeah, so what we our system is built in such a way with the rules, where if you identify something bad, we take you through some sort of immediate remediation step. And so we want you to either like the bare minimum would be tell us what you did to solve this, that might be the remediation, give us a comment, let us know what you did to solve it. In some cases, it might be Hey, take a photo. But they can get more advanced than that based on, you know, if this based on if this was, you know, made today, then you can just try to tamp it, this ice bath it down. But maybe if it was made several days ago, you might want to have to toss it and get a new one because we don't know how long it's been in the danger zone. So we try to rectify all issues immediately in the checklist. We don't let them off the checklist until we've kind of solved the problems. But then once you hit done and submit the thing, if it was a critical violation, like a temperature violation, if you had signed up for this, you could get notified immediately that there was a temperature violation. And then you'd be able to click on that alert and at least see what the person did. You know, did they follow the follow up steps to solve it? Most people don't manage that tightly though, to be honest with you above store people don't generally manage, right, you know, getting criticals on everything that's more of the GM or the kitchen manager's job would be to take those criticals and confirm And that we did it correctly at the location level. But yes, then all that data flows into dashboards. And you can get reports emailed to you. And so you can follow it. And generally what people are focusing on isn't so much that the individual food safety things, it's more about is the restaurant doing the checklists that they're supposed to do when they're supposed to do them. And so we built in this whole schedule, right. And we have sort of anti pencil whipping measures in there too. Like you can't do your Pm line, check until three o'clock 330. In the afternoon, you can't even start it type of stuff. We really, we just want to get people doing the checklists. And really, when we're also like, when we're coaching and we're rewarding people, it's more about did you do the checklist, you're gonna have 87 degree ranch dressing, what I don't care about is that you had a seven degree ranch dressing, what I care about is that you handled it correctly when you figured it out, right. So we don't want to punish people for we don't want to punish people for not finding problems, we want to coach them on the importance of doing the checklist. So yeah, we really want to reward people for just doing the checklist and reporting back, honestly, and all incentives. And everything we want to do are based around that aspect, because we are relying on the team at the store to do this. And so like I said, I don't want to yell at you for having any seminar grants Ranch, I want to praise you for dealing with it correctly.
Right. So I have a couple of questions on that. So like when you were mentioning earlier, you get an alert. So obviously, the app is probably installed by all management at this specific stores as well. So like you're saying, essentially in like, like, let's keep your ranch going. It's easy. The seventh degree Ranch, the kitchen manager gets alert on that, and they know they gotta do something's gotta be done about it. And then you once you go to deal with the situation, you then log how you dealt with it?
Yes, exactly. And so what will happen is, when they type in 87 degree Ranch, a little red boxes, a little red sentence is going to pop up in the box is going to change color, basically and say, Hey, this is out of our standard, right, and we whatever language we put in there, it's fine. But this does not meet our standard, please tell us what you're doing to fix it. So then right there, the person on the line, who took that temperature has to go, Oh, I'm putting this on an ice bath, or hey, I'm going to, you know, throw it in the freezer, or whatever they're going to do or whatever they did to fix it. Hey, I'm tossing this in the trash. Yeah, we want them to record that sentence right there. Now, the statement, the warning statement we give to people can be whatever it is that your procedure is. So one of the biggest mistakes I see restaurant companies in general making when it comes to these checklists, is they're relying on the kitchen manager to do it by himself. One of the cool things about our platform is that multiple people can be working the same checklist simultaneously, just like a Google Doc, right or a Google spreadsheet. So the best thing, because here's what happens, right, just in general, and this my little diatribe, but people don't like if you come to me with a 45 minute line, check in on the kitchen manager and I have, like, gotta go between 1030 and 1130. When we open in that time period, I'm gonna get asked him my key 65 times, I'm gonna get 50 questions, you know, and I'm just gonna get inundated with like deliveries and as of your repair, and food as an idiot new food salesman is going to show up and try to sell me food at 1030 in the morning, you know, and I'm gonna be like, I'll never get it done. And so and that's the biggest mistake the industry makes as a whole is the managers feel like they're the only ones who can do this. And that's not right. Like we built in this ability, collaboration is what we call it, there are multiple people can be doing this checklist, what should be happening is that I should be having the the company tablet, I should hand it to my guy on saute. And I should say do your station. Here's the thermometer, I'm going to the walkins and the storage room and the dish pit and I'd be on my phone doing it on that on the company Wi Fi right. And then when you're done so in saute, you handed the pantry and have him go do his station. And then four of us can take five minutes each and do our stations and crowdsource this thing together as a team and get the whole thing done in 15 minutes total versus one guy trying to do it in 45 minutes. That's a huge mistake that we make as a whole in the industry. But that's also dependent on what's happening. So like the message in that use case, I would have the message say hey, this ranch dressing is you know, not in standard grab the kitchen manager real quick and let them know and then he can come over and go oh, we can ice pack that or we should pass it may have him make the decision. Then write the comment and hey, I made the decision to toss it and then you know move on and then just go get new ranch dressing and keep moving. But you can
also kind of like track ways stood in a way for this as well, right? Because if the fucking solution for this guy every time is toss it, then you're gonna start to be like, Oh, maybe we can come up with maybe we can problem solve a little bit.
Yeah, no, no, exactly. And like, the cool thing about this platform is this is that even in your you're an owner operator, right? Yeah. So you're either in the kitchen or you're in the front of the house, or you're in the office, or you're running between two of your locations. Yeah. So you're not in one all the time. So you're paying people to look out for your interests? That's right. Yeah. And throwing away the a quart of ranch dressing every time. It's not looking out for your interests, no, like, it's actually just, it's one of those things that because you're not in the kitchen, when he does it, you don't know that it happened until you're looking at your food cost at the end of the week, or the end of the month, and you're like, am I can we never get under 37%, or whatever that number is, right? Like, you start to get frustrated, and you can't figure it out. And it's because people are doing stuff like that. And what our platform does is it just tells you what's actually happening in your business. And what's cool about it, is that from your perspective, you just train the managers to use the platform when they're supposed to use it. And then you control the checklists, you and your executive team control the checklists. And then if you want to change a procedure, you just change the checklist, right? Hey, now, the now the new procedure is, did you throw this away? Yes. Okay, wait first, or take a picture of it in the trash, like a lot of times, like, in some cases, the picture of the trash is is important, you know, of being show me that it was actually thrown away. Right? That it's not just walking out the back door, or something like you had the pool because it was that I want to see in the trash to make sure we didn't serve it anybody. Right. So you know, but you can control what you guys want them to do. And the nice thing is, is that all that data is already in a platform. So like for instance, if you wanted to just add up all the waste for the week, then you can just go pull it down into a spreadsheet, and it's already in there, you know, and you can just put it some function on it and move on with your day, you know,
I like how it's like an organic thing and then can develop. So it's like once you've sort of targeted an issue that keeps recurring, then you can just add that to the checklist as a way of dealing like, that's, that's a great feature of it. Yeah.
And it's easy, you can do it in three seconds, hey, this is a problem. Now we've identified this as a problem. So let's just added a couple of extra steps in this section. And then maybe we only have those on temporarily, you know, and I mean, the the other cool thing about it too, like it is is like you know so much for the record keeping knowing keeps record keeping, like you know, it's all invoices like this other stuff like preventative maintenance stuff, like you guys are coming in to summer up in Canada, you got like three weeks of summer coming, you gotta get ready. So it's like, but you know, like one of the things that you should be doing every year, like around April, right? Or may is you should have a checklist that just runs it goes, Hey, get the H fax service. And then you're gonna do the same thing again, probably in October when it starts getting cold. Let's get the H Fax Service, make sure the heats working good. That's the kind of thing where you can create a checklist like that. Get the H fax service. Okay, and then the checklist that'll be is what gave you the H back service get done upload a picture of the receipt, were there any major issues, type them up for me, you know, whatever, what was the cost, and you can literally just turn that thing on April 1 April 30. And October 1 October 31. You build it one time, and then you forget about it. And so you're not sitting there recreating the wheel every time you gotta like a new thing you need to go do you literally build it once scheduled for two months a year. And then it's in there and then next April 1, without anyone having to remember 23 Your manager at your restaurant is gonna go get your H fax service you have until the end of the month. And then that guy can schedule it and just get the data put it in there. And then then when your thing busts you're not looking for the receipt Where did the invoice go? What did the guy tell us the problem was he the guy took a picture of it and put it in the app, you can go pull every H vac service you've ever had on that one, you know H vac system for that one location and pull the receipts out look at him you know, that's amazing those kinds of things is just we're all you get rid all die in a physician decision fatigue like my kids do this to me constantly. They just hammer me with question and question and question and my brain doesn't work anymore. And I'm like yes go play with the gun in the back. I don't care you know,
nobody told you to have kids
my wife did
one person No, I really I think that's fantastic that and I love how you can just keep adding things to it and it just sucks up all this info for you. It's a great tool. I had a couple of questions for you about it though one like obviously, it would I would be stunned if not you didn't get unbelievable positive feedback from owner operators from management level. Yeah, but I also am very familiar with the industry I've been working in for 30 plus years, and I'm just wondering what kind of feedback you seem to get, or if you even hear it from like, the people on the ground, like, because I know, service staff are just gonna be like, Why do I have to fill out this fucking checklist every day, just let me do my job and go home, like, attitude. So I'm like, What's the sort of feedback you're getting from that level?
So the reality is, is that the industry be so checklists have such a bad reputation in the industry, right, and like, I'm not gonna like, I'm not gonna push it anyone, like, I heard it during checklists, too. But I hate it. But the reason they have a bad reputation in the industry is because they've always been done on paper, no one ever looks at them, and no one's paying attention to see if they're done at all. So essentially, what they are is wasted busy work. It's just like your commute to the office, it's nonsense waste of time for people because no one ever looks at the data, no one ever compliments me for doing it, or even knows when I don't do it, right. And that's the failings of paper. And especially in big in any kind of chain. Like you're just too busy doing stuff, right. But with a platform, now the data is usable, right? Because we can see it and use it to make better decisions. And that's really the benefit this whole thing. Number two, millennials in general, they don't want to do anything that's repeatable. And they want to have a voice in the company, right? So they actually want to know that they're being heard. So like, in that respect, like, you know, you can at least go to them and try to explain the why behind this right? Is the why is we want the data to make better decisions to we want to make sure that we are taking care of what we need to take care of, like the thing that we have to remember, in the businesses this probably in your 30 years in the business, you've had one server punch of customer maybe to fight or something. Most of the problems you're having in your restaurants today where you piss off a customer, right? They're not because someone was spitting in their face or trying to choke them out or punch them or tell them their wife was ugly, it was because you just did you miss doing something that you probably had already identified with something you needed to do. But people can't keep up with the amount of details that they need to be doing today, our brains have been destroyed by our phones. And like, we just, we don't have the same level of professional that we had in 1990, who was a professional bartender or professional server. We're rotating people through here constantly. And I'm proud of the problem to all these new apps, all the new things, they have to check for your, your you know, your reservation system, your inventory system, your orders, your DoorDash, your Uber Eats, whatever you have, you know, all these other apps that added all these additional tasks that people have to check. And so it's just too much for human beings to keep track of right? It's too much for the manager, it's too much for the employees. And we're missing the little things, the things that just irritate people, like, you know, you get an ice tea, and it's the first I see the shift, and there's no ice in the glass, because it seems so hot. Because no one made it early enough. You know what I mean? It's just those are little things that like, they don't move, they don't break that one little thing because they're going to wreck your experience. But when you get 20 of them, because people just weren't focused or paying attention, or the manager was stressed because the dishwasher was busted. They were trying to get a repairman out there ASAP, then they miss 10 different little things. And all of a sudden, you know, you just have a lesser experience. And then you have three lesser experiences in a row, because people aren't organized and guess what you have. Now I'm altering my decision to return right? I'm not going to come by come once a month. Now I'm going to take a month off. You know what I mean? And heaven forbid in that month I go find your competitor that's doing a great job. And now I might start going there more often. Right? You know, it's it's it's death by 1000 cuts. That's the hospitality industry it is. And so and so there's just too many little details. So we just got to get we got to get people to understand that why would you try to remember any of this, you don't need to it's a stupid waste of your time. It's like you don't remember anyone's phone number anymore. Use a tablet, use a phone, go just follow the little list and just confirm that the bathroom is clean. But there's toilet paper that you know your cut the carrots correctly, that you got a backup of, you know, lettuce under your burger station. So we don't have to like run to the back and chop lettuce on the line. While the burgers get overcooked. You know what I mean? Like, let's just control we can control so we can deliver great experiences. Because let's be honest, the general public are a bunch of babies right now and they have weakened and they're gonna make they're gonna NAG and then they're gonna get online and complain about how the lettuce wasn't cooked correctly. And the burger was dry and
well, it's Yeah, so basically, the app in a nutshell just takes a shitload of stress and concern off your plate and and just makes it very easy. Like it's just in there. It's very simple, you follow a list, and and then all the data is available to you, which is amazing. I do want to sort of talk a little to you a little bit more about your personal situation. But do you have any questions about the athlete before?
Actually, obviously, realize that a lot of human input, do people sometimes just go through the list and just check it off just for the
pencil with the shit out of it, but that's okay. Because we track that, right? I look at all the data that we collect, as there's no bad data in here. It's all just the reality of what is happening at our store right now. And instead of, like, in so now, it gives the GM or you the owner operator of both restaurants, it gives you something to actually coach somebody on that's real, you know, so many times like, especially like, in big bigger chain situations to the guy is not in the restaurant once every like a month, right? So then he comes in, he sees one thing wrong, and he's harps on that for the next three hours. Like, oh, why have you had the poster? Right? And the person is like, I have to be fixed. It's like the TPS reports. And office space. I've already fixed it. It's not a problem. Yeah, but they just keep harping on it. Whereas this provides you with actual data that you can look at, and coach people out and coach them in a timely manner, and coach them from that your opinion. But like, look, yeah, did that line check in 38 seconds, man, there's no, you know, you can't tell me those are real temperatures, right? Like, so why did you do that? Well, then you find out the dishwasher No, called no showed, and that guy has been back to him paths. And he knew he was gonna get in trouble if he didn't do the checklist. So he just went and did it incorrectly. But then you go, okay. So I understand why you did that. But we just needed to like, you could have as a better manager, given it to your team and let them go do it correctly. And then we would add save times, right? Because, you know, and but you just have an ability to coach now you have actual data, and you can reward the people that are doing great, you can coach the people that aren't doing great. And you can get everybody on the same page, you know, because everyone's going to do the path of least resistance. And the path of least resistance, once you're following up in a timely manner is to do stuff correctly.
Right? You know? Well, let's talk a little bit about I mean, it's, obviously you're a data driven person, like and this all makes a whole lot of sense to me. Certainly, I can see you the massive benefit of you're running a chain of restaurants like sounds amazing. So how did you get come up with this idea? How did you get into it? What's your background? And how did we get to where we are with your company today?
Sure. So I'm a hotel restaurant guy. I started at 14, my mom took me to the Columbia mom, Maryland, and I got a job making cheese steaks at like a cheesesteak place. And I just always was getting, I'm a hospitality guy, like, I'm Puerto Rican and Greek, right? So like, I used to have a joke that like, you know, I was conceived in the dish pit of a restaurant. Because, you know, a diner somewhere. But my parents were both tech people straight. So my grandparents were both immigrants who owned restaurants, both my Puerto Rican grandfather from New York, and my great grandfather from North Carolina. We're both immigrants to the country started their families here and good restaurants. And then my parents saw how hard restaurants were to run. So they went into tech, and then nothing to do with restaurants. And then, you know, at 14, I like wanted to cook and just wanted to go get a job and just started my hospitality career. Then I have a hotel restaurant degree from the University of Denver, which my sweatshirt has on there. And then I got out, I was doing country clubs. I was really into country clubs at the time. And then like two months into that gig, I was like, this sucks. I should do stand up comedy. And I, my friend was like, You should you don't want to be 40 with kids and a wife and a mortgage in the suburbs and then regret you didn't do stand up when you had a chance. And I was like, You know what I should. And so like three weeks later, I went on stage did stand up but fell in love with that immediately. Like on that stage. The first one is like a standard comedian and spend like the next 10 years just doing stand up the whole time. But then I worked in hospitality because that's what you do. Right? I waited tables. I mean that, you know, I worked like one of the busiest PF Changs does it get Chinese chain down here. But I also like waited tables at like a dick's last resort, which is in Chicago, where you know, you get to yell at the people and make fun of them and like, just be crazy. Yeah, I did a little bit of everything. I worked in comedy clubs, I did stand up. And then like in 22,005, I was really tired of being broke. And I was getting older. And I was like, I need a couch and health insurance. You know, like, I gotta make some changes. And so I went back and got an MBA. And then I got a job at Quiznos, which I think there's still some Quiznos in Canada. Yeah, and yeah, so I got a job there running the franchise Assistance Program, which was like the worst job ever in 2008 when the US economy collapse, and, and so and that was also the start of the Quiznos implosion. And so I got that job, which is brutal. That was like my second MBA. And then I got promoted, and I had to build. I was in OPS services for this, like, we still had 5000 restaurants, roughly a little bit less. And so they wanted me to figure out a way to report on all the audits we were doing on the restaurants. So I tried to, I tried to get it to get us a software platform, and they wouldn't do anything, any money. So I ended up building my own version of this early version of this, like 2008 webphone, where you could do like an inspection. And that was the beginning of the idea for ops Analytica, I left Quiznos got a tech job, and then had an opportunity to try to build this thing out at that tech job. And I did. And then in 2015, we started ops Analytica, and then rebuilt everything. So that's how we kind of got here. So I'm an operator who has some software experience.
Yeah. So it's kind of the perfect storm for doing what you did sort of the hospitality and the tech background, which makes a lot of sense to how you develop this program. So what's so with regards to reaching? I mean, I know you're doing a podcast, you're probably going to you're probably doing a bunch of podcasts, but like, like, what's your what's your marketing strategy of sort of reaching more franchises or restaurants or anyone you're interested in doing business with? What's your strategy there?
I need some ideas. You know, what we have trike in the position of hopefully being thought leaders. And so we are kind of a content driven marketing company. I've written probably 300 Plus, like original blogs, I've recorded. I think I'm on like, Episode 89, on my own podcast, where I interview operators, and we'll chat about that after we wrap this up. And then, but we've really gone with a content strategy, from a marketing perspective of just trying to, like, unpack all of this stuff, right? Because, like, nobody's really thinking about like, it's really it's the hospitality industry is so interesting, because we've never had the ability to really easily manage the actual operations, especially when you have multiple units. One unit is different, though. I have a single unit operator has been with me for years, there Commander's Palace and New Orleans. I don't know if you're familiar with them, but they probably do 10 million a year, you know, so they're huge family owned operation. They have four dining rooms, white tablecloth service, you know, weddings, that kind of thing. They, they're huge. For them, they're almost like a multi unit operator, because they're so big and going on. Yeah. But I've had, you know, I've had a couple of diners here and there, you know, some smaller operations, but like, so we've just tried to take this leadership role with around content and trying to unpack what, why the support because everybody is so comfortable, not having backing into what's actually happening, right. And like, but you go to the great restaurant companies like the top 20%, restaurant companies, and they have a culture of excellence, right? And if systems and of excellence. And in that they those companies shift over time, it's someone's hat for a while, and then they're not or whatever happens, right? But there's always that top 20% that are the most successful, they make 80% of the profits in the space. And they are systems driven, process driven operators who pay attention to detail and then seemingly do it effortlessly. Right? And we've all seen those, those restaurants that are never, not busy. And they're and they never miss anything. You know, you go there once a year, once every three months, and you go in and every time it's just great. Well, that's because they're doing they're controlling what they need to control, right? They're not getting bogged down with everything else that's happening in the world. They're just focusing on is the bathroom clean. Did we practice correctly? Is this taste right? Can we cook it properly? You know what I mean? It's just amazing to watch those guys operate. And that's what my platform is trying to make accessible to all restaurant operators. Because you're not always, you know, there's only so many amazing managers, right? We gotta take, we bet we can we can make up for the deficiencies and talent with better systems and processes. And the biggest pet peeve that I have in the world is that people just like, they don't control what they're supposed to control in their own environment. Like, you know what I mean? Yeah, that just drives me nuts.
Well, the one thing I will say is that my years in the business have taught me more than anything is that the app Like you can create the best vibe in the world, the best playlist, you can have the best hamburgers, you can have the best cocktails. But the thing that matters, the best staff. But the thing that matters the most is consistency. It has to be the same every time your guests come there. And it seems like this is an amazing tool to make that a lot easier for you.
Yeah, and I don't think I even actually answered your last question. So
it's a free fluid show. Okay, well talk to us, like, Where can owner operators find your app? How much does it cost to sign up? Give us the give us the nitty gritty?
Sure. So if you were to buy the rack rate, one location, it's going to be 30 for us a month. So like a buck a day, basically. Yeah, there's an implementation package that we highly recommend you do. But you don't have to, but where we will take all of your checklist and set everything up for you perfectly in this hand you over a like ready to go, you're done. Take it and go and be successful with it like implementation, and then it goes on for 90 days. So we build in and plenty of time for you to iterate through and figure out okay, you know, I don't like how this checklist works, let's change this, this and this, and get some feedback from your customers, or from your, you know, your employees. And what I recommend to just as a side note, if anyone is interested in listening to this, you know, you're going to be tempted to now that you're getting finally going to get some control and visibility and data to go overboard on day one. And what we'll do is we try to build everything on day one. But then what we want to do is just kind of turn it all off, and let people make that sort of change management decision. You know, you get people comfortable using the platform, and then start turning things on like on week two and three. Here's what happens, right. And this is just something that everyone should be aware of nobody's doing your paper checklists correctly today. So like, they can get them done in a minute. But now you're coming in and saying not only can you not do this in a minute, but you have to do it between this timeframe that you're probably not used to doing it at. So it requires your team that kind of like reorganize their Schiff in a way where they can now fit this thing in at the time. We're saying we you need to do it. Because part of the whole process, right? Is that doing a line check where you're tasting food and tempting things. It only makes sense right? Before you go to like the rush, right? Right before you open for service. You're like I don't want someone to come in at 9am and bang out like journalists all day, and then smoke a cigarette, drink some coffee. And then you know, I want them to do it actually at 1030 when it impacts my business, and I can correct my mistakes. So, so I would just put that out there. And so you can get it you can check us out at ops Analytica, Dotco. It's O P s a n a l i t i ca.co? Well, I'll tell you something funny about that. That stupid logo too. So we have I've sent a letter because our logo but then LinkedIn, like at the time it was it's a you know, it's a rectangle, and LinkedIn does a square. And so it would center the logo on the square and it would say Angel
all of our posts for like, a year before we figured it out.
of you just didn't know the data on when you got whether you got more or less time, but
we had a lot of wasted demos. Yeah. What I thought it was?
Well, I think the product says great, Tommy, we appreciate you coming on the show. Is there anything you want to promote on social media for our guests where they can find you personally, or they are upset? Oh,
yeah, check out, come and check me out on LinkedIn. And just reach out and say hi, and ask any questions. And I'm just like, my role is like, very blessing Lee, as we continue to grow, my role was really evolving into, I'm trying to find new use cases for the platform. So even if you're not in the hospitality space, you got some other company, but you have a lot of repeatable processes, you got a lot of people doing a lot of things, and you just want to button it up and get some data. Reach out to me now I would love to chat with you and figure stuff out. And if you just have some restaurant questions like how this can work in your restaurant, or Shania demo, like we truly just want to take care of people. Because, like, it's so hard to sell. Like, just in general, selling anything, getting people to move and take action for their business is so hard that we just want to do such a good job for you guys. Because once you're in, you're just love the product and you're just, it is more for your business. And you know, you'll be happy and you won't go anywhere. And then we all went.
Well. Thanks, Tommy. It's super interesting. And you're, you're a fascinating guy. So thanks for coming on the show. We appreciate it.
I really appreciate it guys.
Thanks very much. All right. We hope you enjoyed that interview with Tommy. And as mentioned, check out the show notes for all the links to contact Tommy on LinkedIn. And Ops analytica.co And stay tuned for our next segment with the Elena antar.
Okay and so for the second part of our episode this week we are starting our now a monthly visit with our old friend Elena antar. How are you, Lena?
Hey guys, it's great to be back.
Yeah, this is exciting. This is a new thing. So every four weeks now we'll be joined by you Lena. We're gonna talk about some funny stuff and during her career and ours. The other thing that we'd like to announce is that if you guys have questions for any of us, myself, Dan or you Lena, you should email us at info at the industry podcast dot club. And we'll be doing periodic mailbag episodes with you. Lena is the most fascinating person you're ever going to talk to. You can have some questions. So welcome to this new partnership. You Lena, thanks for being a part of the industry podcast. We're good now. Yeah, thank you very much. Thanks for joining the show excited to be a part of this really fucked yourself over. So the other thing that we're gonna we were just talking about before we started recording is Lena and I will also be at tales of the cocktail. And we are reaching out to anyone who is also going to be there well, we'll get the dates to the specific dates that I'm going to be there at least when we have confirmed them. But we're essentially we're going to be doing a little pop up interviews with people from the industry at tales of the cocktail, just short little interviews. He Lena and I are gonna be walking around drinking and talking to people.
correcting people. Yeah, so
if you are a listener, and you're in the industry, you're gonna be at the tales of the cocktail DMS at the industry podcast on Instagram and let us know you're gonna be there. And we'll arrange a time to meet you. But let's get to our episode here. And so what we think we were thought it would be funny to talk about with you, in our first little return of your Lena episode, because you had worked at the casino and at Hooters and stuff we thought that would be funny to talk to you about maybe about some of those stories of some creepy dudes trying to hit on. And maybe what kind of advice you would give to people who listen to our show about how to fend them off? Or not if they don't want
a creepy dude, it happens to be hot and rich.
What's the problem?
Oh, man, so you know, I had to like my brain automatically erases all the, like the I guess the scary stories, but I had to, like think back and like figure out what are the most interesting ones? And I guess I have quite a few. So I guess let's start with Hooters. Right? Yeah, let's start with Hooters. And that was my first job in the industry. As a server though, I got hired on the like, literally just had an interview and they're like, Okay, try this the uniform. And they hired me which I never been in the service industry before I barely turned 21 at the time. And the first creepy dude was the the manager was trying to hit on me. But so it's all good. I was there for just a hot second. So that environment wasn't necessarily the necessarily the best for me but I guess the story from that environment was the this father and son team was trying to pick me up and so the so this to you know, two guys having lunch and the the younger guy like super super young, like I don't even know if he was it was, well, Hooters you don't have to be 21 to die in there. Right? But he's, like definitely flirting with me. And he's definitely a lot younger than me. And I think I said something to the fact like, I mean, don't you think you like I'm a little too old for you? And he's like, No, I'm actually actually like trying to hook you up with my dad that was an interest in interest in pickup line.
How many how many years we are married to his dad
no, that was That was funny. Actually. That was kind of cute.
Yeah, that's that's sort of an adorable story. When you when you were in the casino, though, because I remember when for anyone who hasn't checked out your latest full episode. That's the first thing you should be doing. You should probably just stop listening right now. Go look into the archives. Listen to that whole episode. Get caught up a little bit, but
episode 103 There you go.
But number one
When you when you weren't at the casino and you were doing in that sort of more high rollers room and you were gonna get the costume a little bit wrong, but you had to wear like a sort of almost like a bikini and a head dress.
Oh, yeah at all. Yeah. Okay, so that was you. Okay. You think you're talking about the jeweler Taner? Yeah, basically a G string. A little, like sparkly bra. I'll send you guys a photo for your eyes only. And the head dress. like kinda like typical typical show girl Vegas show girl but like a lot less, less coverage. So, yeah. And so yeah, going on stage like every every hour
dancing, which is not something you're trained for. And then and then you also have to go around serve drinks to the people gambling correct. So there's got to be some crazy stories from that period. Like of dudes trying to hit on you.
Dudes only you only interested in dudes.
Oh, women too. Sorry, that was very misogynistic of me. Of course. Equal Opportunity. flirter
actually, that was the kind of creepy story and I was very, I was young. I was you know, probably 2021 2223 and very naive. Again, back to the episode 103 coming from basically a farm in Russia where everybody knows everyone very, very nice. So I have I got this like, really? Like an interesting couple. A girl and a guy and you can tell the girl is probably hired. Right? She was she's probably like, like an escort girl. And they, you know, they they fun they given me money they tip and really well and they, you know, they kind of like being flirty and very flirty as well. So maybe I just gave them the wrong idea to begin with. Me actually looking back I think I've provoked a lot of that behavior a lot of myself. I'm very friendly, very flirty. So. And I don't even remember how it all went down. But basically, the girl asked me if I wanted to play unicorn. And I had no idea whatsoever. Okay, what the heck she was talking about. I had no idea. And I literally like you know, I was just trying to just to be friendly and hacky and he like whatever customer wants and I'm like, sure. You guys know what it refers to right? No. Oh man. What did I just opened the can of worms. Next question. You down
this rabbit hole now you gotta finish
this might be gone with the big unicorn the top of the head there.
Oh, I totally stepped into this one. Okay, let me take a sip of my anyway, not that I really know a lot about that industry, but I guess it's just them. This couple they were looking for another girl to play with. And that they were looking for a unicorn a single girl who would play with a couple.
Yeah, okay. That's not as bad as I thought it was.
No, I didn't have to. Well, I did not participate. Disclosure. You want to creepy stories? Yeah.
Okay, so what do you what do you do in that situation like though like and this is some advice for people? Like let's make this educational for
that what do you do? Like what do you do to fend them off? Because a part of your job as a server is to be friendly with the guests and it's a time old tail that like creepy old guys and women as well. I guess we'll take that the wrong way if they go just like the guy who thinks the strippers in love with them a lot but they all are but what do you do like to then like without offending them just make it clear that you're not interested in you're just there to serve them?
You run Okay, so that's what I would first of all, so imagine me with this super heavy accent. Like I didn't know what was going on. First of all, didn't know what they were proposing. So you know, luckily I was a cocktail waitress so I wasn't stuck behind the bar. I was making my rounds. I was moving around a lot. That's That's my saving grace, I guess. And I went behind the bar and I asked my bartender's while this. Here's the situation. This couple, this is what they asked me. What does it mean? So luckily, somebody knew what it meant. And they explained it to me. And then I said, I'm taking a break a 30 minute break. Somebody covered my station. So I literally like I ran away from that particular one. Yeah, no good. No good advice. But,
but if you're stuck behind a bar, what do you do?
Oh, man, I don't know. Don't you usually have like a bartender a barback was to rescue you.
That's pretty much. That's all you got.
Kelsey, would you get hired for this job? This banishment say anything about like, the situations you might come into? Or do they just kind of say, Hey, man, you're hired as hell.
No, no, you I mean, if you remember my story, they hired me. They're like, try this outfit on. And okay, you're going to be a bartender, we're gonna pay you this much. But don't tell anybody how much we're paying you and that that's me turning 21 Without a knowledge of even what goes in Rome and coke. Like, I think it was rum and coke that goes and rum and coke but that's all I knew about I nailed the rum and coke so that's, that's, that's the management back in the day. At the place that I used to work at, like at the place I used to work at we didn't have champagne for example. So we serve white like draft wine with a splash of club soda.
that offends my delicate wine sensibility
Although it does sound like something I could sell cheaper Avalon sister
probably ever sent it back. Right right thing at the right time.
Yeah, if they didn't like champagne would have Chablis. Oh, you guys have friendship leave? Sure. It was I think I told you I did in myself but that was you know, literally 2021 years 20 years ago 20 years ago and that's back in the day where wine was on the on tab on the gun on the guy on the gun Yeah, that's had the white wine on the gun and like red one white wine and the gun and you mix them together so wanted Rosie Soto to the white wine to make it champagne.
See this is why we this is why your recurring guest and not even a guest anymore part of the show. stories we need to totally get those guns installed as my winebar
the newest the newest invention right.
Now that I know Perfect. Okay, well let's talk a little bit about cocktail vision before we let you go the this is how we're going to do these things short little spots once a month with the Elena funny stories and then we're going to talk a little cocktail vision because you've always got new shit coming down the pipe. So I know you mentioned last time we spoke I don't know if you're ready to like break this stuff on an episode yet. About the new product you have coming out yet
or the lickable rim? Yeah, let's save it for the next month. Okay. double dribble rams licking all night long.
All right, well. We haven't got a name for it yet. So that's but
you should be for it to be delicious.
I should have been fucking around with some of the products that you later sent to me. They're pretty awesome. We've been using the glitter and the glue for the red glue. Glue. Yeah, it's all awesome stuff. And so as always, we'll plug this at the end of your visit with us. Where does everyone find your products?
You can definitely find it on cocktail that vision Instagram and sharp cocktail dot vision as well as Chef rubber duck
forever.com Perfect. All right. Thanks as always, and we'll see you in four weeks.