Given the challenging economy, organizers of FS/TEC 2008 worked to maximize the conference experience for attendees by offering an expanded slate of experts and new program formats all aimed at “Putting the I.T. in Prof. I.T.$.”
Daniel Burrus, author of “Technotrends” and a technology researcher and forecaster, will deliver the keynote address during FS/TEC 2008, to be held April 16-19 in Grapevine, Texas. In addition, this year’s program includes Andy Ford, a cultural trends watcher with advertising and marketing consultancy services group Noble Communications. And members of the National Restaurant Association Management Information Systems Executive Study Group will help to guide discussions during luncheon “Table Talk” sessions that encourage attendees to share their information technology experiences and hear about the challenges and victories of their counterparts from across the industry.
Ford, a graduate of Evangel University in Springfield, Mo., has the unique title of wavemaster for Springfield-based Noble’s CultureWaves initiative and he serves as the company’s chief insights officer. He will offer some thoughts about the role technology plays in consumer behavior and will moderate the popular Chief Executive/Chef Operating Officer general session.
Noble credits Ford’s expertise to his ability to find the business applications for the cultural phenomenon influencing the world’s diverse populations, including lifestyle choices, demographics, media bombardment and education, that he observes. To gain perspective on social and brand interaction, he says he views his job as fitting in and infiltrating a variety of groups with the understanding that underground trends affect products and messages in the mainstream.
20 MOST EXHIBITED PRODUCTS/SERVICES AT FS/TEC 2008
|FS/TEC PRODUCTS/SERVICES CATEGORIES||EXHIBITORS*|
|Point-of-sale systems/Peripherals/Repairs & support||25/15/4|
|Computerized foodservice/Restaurant management systems||7/11|
|Quick-service restaurant solutions||14|
|Back-office systems & software||12|
|Credit & debit card processing/Systems & services||5/7|
|Drive-thru systems/Order confirmation systems||6/5|
|Inventory management services & systems||10|
|Network design & implement/Management systems||6/4|
|Electronic-digital signs/Computerized menu boards||6/3|
|Executive information systems||8|
|Labor management systems||8|
|e-Learning systems and solutions||7|
|Self-service systems & solutions||7|
|Customer loyalty/Frequent diner systems||4/1|
|** Multiple Categories||5|
The NRA MIS Executive Study Group, a respected and long-running peer-to-peer knowledge-sharing group focused on foodservice information technology, meets twice yearly and is open to full-time IT professionals whose companies are NRA members in good standing. Among the discussions its members will help facilitate during the Table Talk sessions will be those touching on wireless point-of-sale systems, corporate infrastructure, Payment Card Industry data security compliance issues, employee life cycle solutions, menu boards and next-generation POS.