Dining

How Millennials Are Changing the Fast-Food World

Automated ordering could become the norm, because Generation Y hates ‘dealing with people'
Millennials Are Changing the Fast Food World
Photo: Arielle Knapp via Twenty20

Seamless web orders. Netflix binges. Avoiding social commitments. If any of these concepts sparks a flame of guilty pleasure in your heart, you’re probably between the ages of 18 and 24. We get it: Sometimes being antisocial is just easier, and millennials have a propensity for such behavior. However, that tendency to avoid “dealing with people” at all costs is shaking things up in the business world.

According to a new study by Ohio-based Frisch's Restaurants, which owns and franchises 120 Big Boy Restaurants, millennials hate dealing with others so much that they’re threatening the very core of the fast-food industry, Business Insider reports. Workers at chains like McDonald’s and Panera Bread are already being replaced with digital tablets and other automated ordering systems that allow millennials to get their double cheeseburgers without having to actually interact with a human.

While these automated systems may actually help improve speed and accuracy of ordering, the trend is bad news for workers at these fast-food restaurants. With added pressure and incentive from the millennial generation to automate these systems, human workers could slowly but surely become obsolete. Plus, with the fight for higher minimum wage raging on, more chains could turn to these more convenient and less expensive systems of ordering.

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Andy Puzder, CEO of Hardee's and Carl's Jr., tells Business Insider, “I've actually seen young people waiting in line to use the kiosk where there's a person standing behind the counter, waiting on nobody."

Like it or not, the surprising trend points to a want and a need for more automation across fast-food chains in the near future. Orbit City, here we come.

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