Restaurant News: Dickey’s New VP of IT Teams Up With Franchisees to Revamp Tech Strategy
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As the world’s largest barbecue brand enters its 79th year, Dickey’s New Vice President of Information Technology Carissa De Santis is embarking on a new technology roadmap with the help of a core group of franchisees.
Franchise representatives on Dickey’s technology advisory committee, five diverse owner operators from across the country, met with De Santis in-person for the first time to discuss the company’s technology strategy and the direction it’s headed in 2020.
“I started in restaurant operations, so I understand the perspective of those who are working in-store and the impact that powerful technology can have on a store’s success,” says De Santis who joined the Dickey’s family in June.
Under De Santis’ direction, this month the Dickey’s website will be overhauled. Changes include a simplified look and improved ordering process for guests. In addition, Dickey’s franchisees will see improvements to their online ordering portal with functionality enhancements expected to roll out before the busy holiday catering season.
“I’ve always admired Dickey’s innovative approach to technology, however seeing our feedback integrated first-hand is a big part of why I like the direction we’re going,” says Darryl Weaver, a member of Dickey’s technology advisory committee who is a multi-unit owner based in Arizona.
Before joining Dickey’s, De Santis worked at TGI Fridays for nearly 20 years in various leadership roles and was named a Women in Restaurant Technology Rising Star at a Hospitality Technology conference in 2019 where she met Laura Rea Dickey, CEO of Dickey’s Barbecue Pit, who was simultaneously accepting a Lifetime Achievement award. “The level of experience and knowledge Carissa brings to our team is invaluable and we look forward to expanding on the success we’ve already been able to accomplish with our technology,” says Laura Rea Dickey, CEO of Dickey’s Barbecue Restaurants, Inc.