Joshua Liang / CEO, Ono Hawaiian BBQ
You see more fast-casual concepts looking to evolve the drive thru. Speaking from our perspective, we don’t have a high percentage of drive thrus because we needed some time to figure out how we can decrease wait times since our food is always grilled to order.
The first drive thru was introduced at our San Pedro, California, location, which was our third store. Since then we have grown to six drive thrus out of 73 stores, which account for 8 percent of our stores.
Now that we’ve discovered the formula—limiting our drive-thru menus to feature only popular items with faster cook times—we are looking to build more drive thrus in the future. With the advancements in technology, we are hoping to connect online ordering, pickup, delivery, and drive thru into one seamless experience in the future.
It works because we have limited the drive-thru menu offerings to items that are high-volume and faster cook times. We also always offer reserved parking spots, so our employees can bring out the food to our customers. About seven out of our 20 future locations will be drive thrus, which is about 35 percent of our future stores.