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Congrats, ‘fight for $15.’ McDonalds to have self-serve kiosks in all locations within 2 years


By —— Bio and Archives--July 21, 2018

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Congrats, 'fight for $15.' McDonalds to have self-serve kiosks in all locations within 2 years
It seems that I’ve been writing about this for years now.  As the fight for fifteen movement gathered steam, and saw some success on the coasts, it became clear that fast food chains were going to do what they could to eliminate entry-level jobs.  It simply makes sense.  If you can replace a teenager with a robot that will never call in sick, never steal, never screw up, never quit, and never protest, you do it as quickly as possible – particularly when that teenager is demanding payment on par with college grads.

Previously we saw Wendy’s plan for 6,000 robotic cashiers, and “Flippy” the burger-making robot” in Pasadena, but now the trend is about to be more widespread.  McDonald’s has announced plans to install order placement and payment kiosks in all of its restaurants nationwide, and they should be up and running in less than two years.

Via Forbes:

As minimum wage levels approach or surpass $15 nationwide, restaurant customers expecting to be greeted by a smiling face will instead be welcomed by a glowing LED screen.

As of 2020, self-service ordering kiosks will be implemented at all U.S. McDonald’s locations. Other chains, including fast-casual brands like Panera and casual-dining brands like Chili’s, have already embraced this trend. Some restaurant concepts have even automated the food-preparation process; earlier this year, NBC News profiled “Flippy,” a robot hamburger flipper. Other upcoming concepts include virtual restaurants which eliminate the need for full-service restaurants (and staff) by only offering home delivery.

While some consumers may appreciate the novelty or added convenience, the conveniences come at the cost of entry-level jobs.

Here’s a clip of the new kiosks in action, filmed in Massachusetts.



Some on the left are claiming that this move was inevitable.  Times change and technology marches onward. That may be true.  This probably would have eventually come to pass.  However, you can bet your bottom dollar that the trend of treating a “summer job for kids” as a career path deserving of 15 or more dollars per hour accelerated the timetable.

Congratulations, fight for 15.


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