Restaurant Industry Challenges & Goals: 2024 Edition

Restaurant Industry Challenges & Goals: 2024 Edition
May 6th 2024

As we enter spring, 2024 is shaping up to have some clear trends that are affecting and will continue to challenge the restaurant industry. But forward-thinking restaurant owners who see these trends can turn them into goals to thrive this year – and in the future. From economic stressors to technological innovations, Prospera Hospitality has a pulse on the issues affecting restaurant owners in 2024 and how to best adapt to them.

Thrive in 2024


Inflation Strains: Food and Capital Costs Stay High

Problem: Inflation     –     Goal: Boost profitability and control costs

No industry is safe from current trends in inflation, and restaurants are certainly feeling the pinch. As the cost of food goes up, restaurant owners cannot pass this entire increase onto customers as a singular solution. In 2024, we need to get creative to combat the increase in food and capital prices.

Prospera’s proposed solutions for the challenges of inflation on restaurants include:

  • Optimize your menu: Reimagine menu concepts and evaluate menu prices. Designing your food program with optimized ingredient sourcing, kitchen prep process and pricing in mind can go a long way to increase your profit margins. While customers’ will have a point that becomes too much, many will adjust to a small increase, as the public knows that food prices have increased in the past year (they’re seeing it on their own grocery bills).
  • Simplify your supply chain: Adjust your number of suppliers and continue doing business with vendors you can rely on. Prospera works with many of our restaurant clients to streamline suppliers to save costs. Using fewer suppliers to get what you need can often save money in shipping, and suppliers may have discounts for larger orders. Get creative with your supply chain to find discounts.

  • Manage your inventory closely: Track prices of ingredients and reduce food waste. Inflation may lead you to no longer stocking certain foods or offering certain menu items. Prospera can help restaurants develop new menus with cost-savings in mind, including reducing cost of ingredients and using products more efficiently.
  • Use technology for data & automation: Technology can streamline your accounting, inventory, invoicing, ordering and more. Prospera offers a line of innovative solutions to save on time and staff. By implementing smart POS systems and dedicated accounting software, you can reduce cost and streamline operations. In fact, 26% of restaurant owners plan to invest in tech for POS, back of house systems, and data analytics. Are you?

I want to boost my profits!

Serve More Guests without Sacrificing Experience

Problem: Increase demand     –     Solution: Smart marketing and technologies to attract and impress guests

The challenge of increasing foot traffic may not be new, but restaurants are facing it full on in 2024. In a recent survey, 17% of restaurant managers said sales volume kept them up at night, and another 24% said volume was the biggest hurdle.

Prospera’s proposed solutions for addressing the challenges of volume on restaurants include:

  • Use effective marketing strategies: In 2024, you need to invest time, money or both into marketing efforts to stand out for your audience. Revamp your marketing and social media strategies and keep your business listings up-to-date. While it may seem counterintuitive to spend money on marketing during a lean year, this is exactly the time to be revamping your strategy. A focus on social media over traditional marketing may help reduce the initial development costs and reach new audiences. Prospera offers marketing solutions tailored for restaurants in all markets.
  • Make it easy for your guests: Let guest-facing technologies attract customers, provide ease of service, and relieve strain on staff. Consider new approaches to website usability, reservation/waitlist tech, online ordering, SMS marketing, gift cards, loyalty programs, and email marketing. Implemented well, these technologies improve customer service and offer unique guest experiences.

32% percent of restaurant owners say marketing technology, promotions and loyalty programs will be top investment in 2024. Prospera has seen this trend for years and offers technology solutions tailored to the restaurant industry.

Find and Retain Quality Employees

Problem: Staffing shortages     –     Solution: Improve employee productivity and retention with smart tech

While staffing isn’t a new problem, 2024 has shown us that there wasn’t a big post-pandemic surge of rehiring as some expected. On top of that, labor costs are expected to continue to increase. Restaurants therefore need to change their approach to staffing and learn how to operate with fewer employees without sacrificing service.

Our Hiring Tips

Technology solutions to help with staffing, training and employee satisfaction and retention include:

  • Recruitment software. Great new software can help attract, screen and interview new hires, reducing some burden on managers.
  • AI-driven systems to optimize staffing, scheduling and operations
  • Handheld labor tech (mobile payments and ordering)
  • Training resources & incentive programs to retain staff
  • Food service and cleaning robotics to support workers

Learn more about robots in restaurants


Restaurant owners in 2024 should be embracing new technologies– from handheld systems to AI-informed operations and robotics– to alleviate staffing strains and improve productivity for all levels of employees.

Prospera is Positioned for 2024’s Challenges

Restaurants don’t need to face the challenges of 2024 alone. Prospera Hospitality offers the management and operations assistance, software solutions, and new technologies to help restaurants thrive in 2024 and beyond. Contact us now to schedule a consultation about our various management partnership solutions.

Contact Prospera


Sources: 2023 Wrap Up & 2024 Trends; 2024 Predictions; Restaurant 365 survey



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