Critique

Critique
Introduction
In this assessment piece we want you to evaluate a particular User Centred Design practice or theory (as presented in an
academic article) and assess its importance or relevance to software development practice. This is an independent research
project.
Topics

Chose ONE of the following articles for your critique:
Dray, S.M., 2014, ‘Questioning Assumptions: UX Research That Really Matters’, interactions, 21(2), pp. 82-5.
Dow, S., 2011, ‘How prototyping practices affect design results’, interactions, 18(3), pp. 54-9.
Bias, R.G., Kortum, P., Sauro, J. & Gillan, D., 2013, ‘Clothing the Naked Emperor: The Unfulfilled Promise of the
Science of Usability’, interactions, 20(6), pp. 72-7.
You will need to download your chosen reference from the ACM Digital Library database. You can access the references via
the library website.
Learning Objectives
In this report you must show evidence of the following Learning Objectives:
1. Critique current issues in User Centred Design and their implications for software development practice.
You will also be assessed according to:
• your analysis and research skills,
• your writing skills.
Resources
Interactions Magazine (where the articles are published)
Swinburne Library Human-Computer Interaction Reference Guide (in particular Databases/ACM Digital Library)
UNSW Academic Support website has some excellent advice about how to write a critical review and writing for academia in
general. Also see Monash Universities Learning Support website for more assistance with academic writing.
Swinburne Library guide to how to do referencing
COS70004 Usability
Swinburne University of Technology
Critique- 1
…continues next page
Table 1: Specifications
Specifications

Details
% of Unit10%
Number of Marks10
Number of PeopleThis is an INDIVIDUAL report.
DeliverablesWritten critique
AudienceThe audience for this report is a manager who wants you to assess the value of a User
Centered Design practice or theory (as presented in an academic article).
Length1,500-2,000 words (not including tables, figures, references or appendices)
Submission
Instructions
Submit report to Blackboard on Turnitin
FeedbackFeedback will be provided as per detailed on Blackboard or via swin email. Feedback
should be interpreted in relation to marking criteria.
Suggested Assessment Structure
This is a suggested format for this assessment piece. Variations are acceptable as long as your critique broadly addresses
the issues identified below.
Title Page
The title page contains:
• Title of paper critiqued and journal publication information
• The date the report due.
• The unit name.
• Tutorial day and time.
• Name of student and ID number
• Number of words (not including tables, figures, references or appendices)
Introduction
Summarise the main points of the article (i.e., the article/research paper, not your critique).
COS70004 Usability
Swinburne University of Technology
Critique- 2
Significance
Issues to consider in this section:
What is the purpose of the article?
Is the problem clearly stated?
Is the problem important?
Argument and use of evidence
Issues to consider in this section:
What claims are made?
What evidence is used to support their claims?
How effective is the evidence?

Implications
Issues to consider in this section:
What are the implications of the article for the software development community?
What are the implications of the article to you?
How has this article changed your views?
How could you see applying these ideas to your work practice, or the work practice of your organization?
Conclusions
Summarise your critique
References
A detailed list of material referenced in the text of the assessment. Failure to appropriately reference material from previously
published sources such as the web or journal articles etc (i.e., plagiarism) will result in a FAIL grade. The list of references
must be presented using approved referencing style such as Harvard or APS (see Blackboard/Assessment/ Guide to
Referencing). Include (appropriately referenced) web pages (include data accessed). Include references for any images
used. It should be clear whether you created an image or downloaded it from another source. For example this document
referenced Courage and Baxter (2005), which using APS style, would be referenced as:
Courage, C. & Baxter, K. (2005). Understanding your users: A practical guide to user requirements, methods, tools and
techniques. San Francisco, CA: Morgan-Kaufmann.
* Note: Plagiarism is the submission of work that is not your own for which you claim credit. Work in which plagiarism is
evident will be given an overall fail grade. Please see Avoiding Plagiarism (http://www.swinburne.edu.au/plagiarism).
COS70004 Usability

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Critique

Give a full critique on the article. In a 2 full pages of critiques.
Do you discount and get more customers in,
or do you work to boost the check average
of the guests who show up? These innovative
operators have chosen the latter.
BY PATRICIA COBE AND JOAN M. LANG w HAT HAVEN TYOU TRIED DURING
this prolonged recession to
build sales and traffic in your
restaurant? Prix fixe menus? Check.
Half-price happy hours? Check. BYOB
wine dinners? Check? Two-for-one
meals? Check. Maybe it’s time to stop
checking off deals and start looking at
boosting the check itself. While discounting
may get more people in the door, it doesn’t
always translate into more profit. Plus, it may
cheapen your concept in the long run. But once customers
are sitting at a table or standing at the bar, there are ways
you can get them to spend more. , . .
“’28 Restaurant Busiress AuQiisI 2D09 www.nionkeydisti.com
Profitable partners
You’ve got stunning cocktails, now pair
them with unique bar food and… k-ching!
Mixologists are borrowing fresh, seasonal ingredients from
the kitchen to craft culinary cocktails that sell for a premium.
Now several restaurants are taking the next logical s t e p –
suggesting bar food pairings that complement
those market-driven drinks
and add extra dollars to the tab.
At one sixtyblue in Cbicago, executive
chef Michael McDonald and
mixologist Rich Szydlo collaborated
on the bar menu, incorporating their
shared “market fresh” philosophy.
Szydlo’s seasonal cocktails include the
Spring Fling (Stoli raspberry, fresh
kumquats and mustard greens; $10) to
pair with House-Cured King Salmon
($11) and the Velveteen Rabbit
(Bacardi O, fresh ground ginger and carrot juice; $10) to go
with Steamed Shrimp Shumai ($12). It’s all part of an
effort to transition from a more formal French restaurant
to an accessible contemporary spot.
“At the bar. some people order the cocktail first and some
order the food. The staff is trained to make the pairing
suggestions,” McDonald explains. On Friday nights, a special
$9 duo of a wood-fired pizza and fresh fruit prosecco cocktail
(green apple, blueberry or rhubarb) draws the crowds.
Despite the discounted price, the same level of attention
is given to ingredients and presentation. Plus, DI music
encourages customers to stay and order another drink,
glass of wine, craft beer or snack.
“The event has introduced one sixtyblue to a wider
audience and people come in and make an evening of it,
spending more money,” McDonald reports. “We’ve been
thrilled with the results.”
Put desserts on sale
And watch the check explode
Perhaps more than any other menu category, desserts
are impulse items—put them on sale, and customers
can’t resist.
“We started doing this during the whole carb thing in
men
real value for
the mid-decade, when our
dessert sales were tanking,” says
Gary Mennie. chef of Livingston
[icstaui-ant & Bar in Atlanta.
which offers its desserts $6
apiece, two for $11, three for $16
or four for $20. (These are not
just any old desserts, either—
we’re talking Cinnamon Beignet
with café au lait, macchiato,
gianduja chocolate and Italian
meringue, and Lemon Tart, a
kind of deconstructed lemon meringue pie with hackberry
syrup, yuzu and a butter cookie crust.)
“Now. with this economy, when people are cutting
back on things like appetizers and desserts, we’re definitely
keeping the pastry chef busy,” laughs Mennie. In fact,
approximately .50 percent of all tables order dessert, and
usually in multiples.
“You”il definitely see a party of two ordering four
desserts.’” says the chef, “so they can experience all those
great different elements and flavors. Once they get the
concept, they see our desserts as an indulgence they can’t
afford to miss.”
Click and count
Online ordering is leading some patrons
to spend more
Virtual menus may not be as tactile or tantalizing, but
it seems they can rack up higher customer tabs than real
ones. “People tend to order an additional course—an
appetizer, side dish or dessert—when they order online,”
says Melanie Gordon, director of communications for
delivery.com, a national online delivery service for restaurants
and other retail businesses. Wliile the economy may
be preventing some people from patronizing restaurants,
these same customers are staying home and ordering in.
DeBveryiCom
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she adds. “They’re not spending money on babysitting and
parking, but they’re willing to pay for higher levels of food
and drink.”
Hotels that post room service menus online are reaping
similar rewards. Guests can use a laptop or smartphone to
peruse the choices—which often provide more detail than
an in-room menu—and easily place their order without
dealing with kitchen staff. The Omni Mandalay in Irving,
Texas, reports that guests spend about $3 more when they
order online. To boost the bill further, the hotel chain
plans to add a function that will recommend a wine or side
dish to accompany the item ordered.
Remodel the menu
Make it really, really easy for customers
to find the profit boosters
Like houses, menus can be made to function better:
improving category sales, for instance, or changing the
menu mix. The new menu at Max & Erma’s, the 100-unit
causal chain based in Columbus, Ohio, is a case in point,
lifting sales of profitable beverages, and creating a more
OLD MENO
easy-to-use experience for guests.
Last November, the dated,
cumbersome spiral bound fonnat—
hard for customers to read,
and harder still for franchisees to
update—was remade into a sleek quadrifold
that lays everything out at one glance. Seaters are trained
to lay the menu down on the table in such a way that
customers see those profit-enhancing beverages first thing.
“It’s definitely
improved our drink
sales,” says senior
director of marketing
Karri Benishek, who
presided over multiple
format tests. In addition
to adding trendier,
flavor-packed items
like an Apple Pecan
Salad and the Stackedto-
the-Max Club, the new fonnat also lealures
photographs that can be used to spur sales of selected
items and has strengthened targeted category sales as well.
“From a brajid perspective, we didn’t want a standard
(lalf-portion of Anchor^ Cream Cheese Poppers®
half-portion of Brew City’” Black & Tarf’ Onion Rings
l í
café-style plastic sleeve—we wanted a freestanding piece
that would be really distinctive,” says Benishek. Rather than
flipping back and forth between pages on the old menu,
customers can see the entire menu at a glance. The company
has also done away with the old inserts of specials and
new items, which gave customers even more pieces to study.
Franchisees can now order new components online, making
it easier for them to implement updates and add regionally
specific menu items. “The whole process has been streamlined,
for us and for customers.”
Share the wealth
When guests try a lot of sharable items,
they pay more than for just one entree
Many restaurants offer appetizer and dessert samplers that
are meant to be shared by two or more diners. The Lazy
Goat in Cireenville, South Carolina, goes one step further—
the whole menu is designed for sharing.
“We were looking at the rise of social dining when we
structured the menu,” says GM Aimee Maher. “Our goal was
to encourage guests to try a bunch of different things for the
table and we found that
all those little pieces
add up to a higher price
than one entrée.”
The Lazy Goat’s menu
categories include unconventional
headings such as
“Graze & Nibble” and “To
Share or Not to Share,” as
well as more typical sections
like “Pastas,” “Pizzas”
and “Cheeses,” but all the
portions are shareable “so
people can create their own
variety,” Maher explains.
Instead of constructed small plates, there are items like
Moroccan Lamb ($8}. Papas Bravas ($6) and Grilled
Romaine and Radicchio ($8) that when teamed up, cover
the meat, potatoes and salad portions of a meal. A server
may suggest a cheese plate or pizza to start and Lazy Paella
($19) or Sweet Potato Tagliatelle ($15) to follow.
“The servers see our menu as an opportunity to increase
the check,” says Maher, ‘but the customer’s perception is
that they are getting more for their money.”
proven to increase sales
Increase the number of patrons ordering appetizers by up to 60%.^
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Growing veggies…
and revenue
Let them see your garden and they’ll pay
a premium for its bounty
Guests af Park Ave in Stanton, California, can enjoy drinks
and appetizers in the restaurant’s garden—prepared with
the vegetables, herbs and edible flowers growing in the 14
surrounding raised
beds. Inside, the menu
highlights items that
use garden produce
and customers gravitate
toward them—
even though they’re
priced a little higher.
Chef/owner David Slay
prepares starters such
as Grilled Calamari
with artichokes and
fresh herb emulsion
($11) and Red Oak
Lettuce Salad with fried green tomatoes ($12); a seasonal
grilled vegetable plate entree goes for $20.
“We grow 100 percent of our herbs and lettuces and about
45 percent of our vegetables, including eight varieties of
heirloom tomatoes, lemon cucumbers, poblano peppers
and purple haze carrots,” says Slay. But this extreme local
sourcing and dining ambience are not the only benefits of
Park Ave’s kitchen garden—it has helped raise the average
dinner check. People are tempted by the bounty and are
willing to pay a premium.
Deluxe ingredients
Still command attention-and a big fat
price tag
Menu items that call out high-end ingredients like Kobe
beef, black truffles or single-origin chocolate can command
a premium price—even in a recession. “When people are
spending their hard-earned money dining out, they want to
feel that its worth it,” comments Chris Day, restaurant director
of Gilt and Palace Gate in New York City. “These ingredients
provide a sense of luxury, graciousness and giving.”
( )ii f he Bar and Lounge Menu at Palace Gate, selections
such as Truffle Potato Fries with garlic herb aioli ($12),
Suckling Pig Tacos ($14) and The Gilt Burger with aged
Cheddar, liouso-made pickles and crispy onion rings ($25;
house-made bacon is another $2.50) are strong sellers.
Ordered with a drink, they bring the per-person check to
$30 10 $50. “You can get fries anywhere,” says Day “Truffles
elevate our fries and entice our guests.”
Both Gilt and Palace Gate have found it more effective
to promote upscale and house-made ingredients tlian
“name the farm or local source,” he adds. “You can’t be in
the ctistomer’s face about where something comes from.
It’s better to impart a subtle sense of luxury.”
Add-ons add up
Just give customers the option to buy
more and guess what… they buy more
When the Carlsbad, California-based Pat & Oscar’s
revamped its menu, the family fast-casual chain didn’t want
to raise prices. But thanks to the addition of new menu
categories and upgrade options, the average guest check
has gone up anyway.
Two of the new categories are shareable appetizers
and desserts—traditionally a hard sell in last casual.
Now, Pat & Oscar’s guests can add on a starter of chicken
wings for $6.99 or Chili Cheese Potato Wedges for $3.99
when they order a family combo meal for $24.99. And
the new Big O Cookie ($3.99)—freshly baked in a 5-inch
pizza pan and topped
with vanilla bean ice
cream—is increasing
dessert orders. “When
people see it walk
through the dining room,
they immediately want
it,” says John Kaufman,
proven to drive traffic
Over 30% of operators use special events to drive traffic.^
And only BreN City combines premium beer battered fries and appetizers with
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CEO and president. “It’s an easy add-on to the check.”
“We think discounting is the wrong way to go in this economy,”
adds Kaufman. “Instead, we’re spending money on
improving the dining experience to create value for our guests.”
Care for an appetizer
bef ere that appetizer?
At a low price point, snacks
can sneak on-and beef up—the tab
Savvy menumakers have found a brand-new category
to exploit: snacks, nibbles, tastes and other gently priced
tidbits that are easy to execute but distinctive enough
to entice diners to order them as a kind of pre-app to
the meal.
Many have a cultural or ethnic bent. Locanda Verde, a
new Mediterranean restaurant in New York City, calls them
piccolini (Italian for “little”), and at $6 to $9, the seasonal
marinated vegetables, crostini and seasonal cheeses are simpler
and less expensive than such antipasti as rabbit terrine,
housemade headcheese and wood-fired king prawns ($11 to
$15). Nearby
Aldea has its
Portuguese
Pinxtos y Picas
(Mini Tapas),
while at
Michael’s
Genuine Food
& Drink
in Miami, the
Sn;icks
menu features the likes of devilled eggs and thick-cut potato
chips with pan-fried onion dip.
Ecco, a Fifth Group restaurant in Atlanta, has done
amazingly well with mix-and-match Meats and Cheeses,
as well as Taste & Share items such as mixed olives and
piquillo peppers stuffed with mushrooms, sherry and
Manchego that sell for $4 to $9 a pop. These appear on
the menu—and often on tables—before the appetizers,
pizzas, pasta and mains.
“Our entire menu revolves around the concept of sharing,”
says owner/partner Robby Kukler, “but especially in this
economy it’s great to be able to feature choices at these
price points.”
men
Serve it up
Your menu is a great tool, but your
servers need to know how to sell it
New York City’s four-star Restaurant Daniel is renowned for
its elegant and attentive service—a component that has
recently grown more competitive. “Were putting pressure
on the waitstali to increase check averages by posting each
server’s numbers for the week,” reported owner Daniel
Boulud at a keynote panel during the NIÎA show in May.
“This forces them to keep up.”
Intensive server training, of course, plays a big part at
Daniel. Same goes for Chicago’s Fulton’s on the River, a
steak and seafood house. Here, the staff is trained to work
at every station—
host stand, kitchen,
bar, server assistant
and finally, server.
They are also tested
on iheir knowledge
of the menu and
must conduct mock
service before taking
care of live guests. This reinforces appropriate suggestive
selling opportunities, says GM Seth Kagy.
For example, after a lively group of six orders drinks and
entrees, the server is trained to “read the table” and make
a good decision on what appetizers and sides to recommend
for sharing. Or he can offer a liqueur to add to coffee
service—something that’s not on the printed menu but
would enhance the meal. “We don’t want servers to be too
pushy—we just want to make people aware of what’s
available. And when guests are receptive, you can upsell
more,” explains Kagy.
by the sip
or the glass
Give wine drinkers more options and
they’ll give you more money
open the list at Restaurant Sent Sovi, In Saratoga, California,
a wine centric place about an hour south of San Francisco,
and you’ll notice a selection of 20 different bottlings available
by the 5-oz. glass, 3-oz. demi or 1-oz taste, priced accordingly.
proven best, proven margins
Sweet potatoes are one of the hottest up-and-coming sides.^
With their naturally healthful appeal, McCairf Harvest Splendor’” Svjeei Potato
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operator in-unit evaluation
t R&l 2007 Menu Census
t t Menu Trends DIRECT, 2007
and McCain USA toad cost esiimate
©2009 McCain Foods USA, Inc.
“About three years ago I realized that there was an underserved
need around here for ‘nice’ wine by the glass,” says
josiah Sione, chef/owner and a self-described “cork dork.”
“You know bow it is: You’re out with your wife and a bottle’s
not enough but two bottles and you’ll get a DUI—and
you end up ordering a glass of wine you don’t really want.”
That and a thousand other wine situations—pairings,
flights, inahility to compromise on a particular bottle—
convinced Slone to get serious about his by-the-glass
program, aided and
abetted by the OZ
precision pouring
system that stores
wines at carefully
calibrated temperatures
and keeps
them fresh for
up to a month once
opened.
“That means I
can offer something
really special, like
a Chateau d’Yquem
or a great old
Cabernet that people
would never be
able to try if it were
only available by
the bottle,” says
Slone. From a business
perspective, the system keeps portions true and
keeps the product fresh long enough to sell it—and from
a marketing perspective Sent Sobi not only sells more
wine, but it also pulls in wine-savvy customers who
wouldn’t ordinarily come.
Bread for bread
Make it a signature item and it’s easy for
customers to accept the price
American diners might be used to getting bread with
their meal, but several canny operators are figuring
out ways to charge for the experience.
Especially with todays European-style
specialty breads and small-plates
dominated menus—not to
mention carb-consciousness—
bread is being seen as a signature
item that carries added value.
The Island Fish Company, a “tiki bar
and restaurant” in Marathon, Florida, lists
38 Resíauraíit Business August 2Ö09 www.morkeydish.com
garlic bread and a
basket of artisan
bread among its
mix-and-match
side dishes, which
also include fried
plantains, black
beans, onion rings, fries and tater lots.
At the new Recipe in New York, the $3 bread basket
is stocked with half-a-dozen interesting breads from
such well-known local bakeries as Grandaisy and Tom
Cat, accompanied by New York honey and butter with
crunchy sea salt.
The list of cured meats and cheese at Eivissa, Dudley
Nieto’s new Chicago restaurant specializijig in pintxos,
tapas and sangria, lists bread and olive oil for a buck.
Before it closed for remodeling, the 2 to 10 p.m. Wine-
Down menu at Littlefields Wine Bar, Bistro and Gourmet
Market in West Fargo. North Dakota, listed a $4.50 basket of
artisan bread with roast garlic bean dip and herb butter
for enjoying with its cheese plates.
Profits on the side
Who knew so many people wanted to
buy more side dishes?
A la carte side dishes may be a growing trend, but the folks
at Redbones, a $7 million-a-year barbecue shack in
Somerville, Massachusetts, have turned sides into a centerpiece.
The 32-item Apps & Sides section of the menu offers
everything from $.99 Atomic Corn Relish to items like the
$5.99 chili verde thai do double-duty as appetizers, and
along the way features such Southern-fried favorites such
as succotash, fried okra, beans, collard greens and even
“potlikkers”—at $2 to $4 prices that have approximately
70 percent of all tables saying “why not.”
“Our type of menu traditionally has many kinds of
side dishes anyway,” says owner Robert Gregory. “And we
have so many regulars and expats from the South that
we sell a lot of sides.” The usual mashed and fries are
inevitable top-sellers, but you’d be surprised how
many Bostonians order fried okra and corn pudding.
As for the daily Kitchen Soup (just $1.99),
it may not be a best seller, but it’s a great
vehicle for the various bean brotbs that
. ^ I lie kitchen generates daily, along with
. t’ggies and other hearty stuff that enough
people order to make it worth Redbones’
while. Ü
CHECK OUT WEB EXCLUSIVES FOH THIS STORY IM THE REPORTER’S
NOTEBOOK AT WWW.MONKEÏD!SH,COM/GO/AUGO9
FOR MORE INFORMATION ON THIS TOPIC CLICK HERE

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Critique

Critique
Introduction
In this assessment piece we want you to evaluate a particular User Centred Design practice or theory (as presented in an
academic article) and assess its importance or relevance to software development practice. This is an independent research
project.
Topics

Chose ONE of the following articles for your critique:
Dray, S.M., 2014, ‘Questioning Assumptions: UX Research That Really Matters’, interactions, 21(2), pp. 82-5.
Dow, S., 2011, ‘How prototyping practices affect design results’, interactions, 18(3), pp. 54-9.
Bias, R.G., Kortum, P., Sauro, J. & Gillan, D., 2013, ‘Clothing the Naked Emperor: The Unfulfilled Promise of the
Science of Usability’, interactions, 20(6), pp. 72-7.
You will need to download your chosen reference from the ACM Digital Library database. You can access the references via
the library website.
Learning Objectives
In this report you must show evidence of the following Learning Objectives:
1. Critique current issues in User Centred Design and their implications for software development practice.
You will also be assessed according to:
• your analysis and research skills,
• your writing skills.
Resources
Interactions Magazine (where the articles are published)
Swinburne Library Human-Computer Interaction Reference Guide (in particular Databases/ACM Digital Library)
UNSW Academic Support website has some excellent advice about how to write a critical review and writing for academia in
general. Also see Monash Universities Learning Support website for more assistance with academic writing.
Swinburne Library guide to how to do referencing
COS70004 Usability
Swinburne University of Technology
Critique- 1
…continues next page
Table 1: Specifications
Specifications

Details
% of Unit10%
Number of Marks10
Number of PeopleThis is an INDIVIDUAL report.
DeliverablesWritten critique
AudienceThe audience for this report is a manager who wants you to assess the value of a User
Centered Design practice or theory (as presented in an academic article).
Length1,500-2,000 words (not including tables, figures, references or appendices)
Submission
Instructions
Submit report to Blackboard on Turnitin
FeedbackFeedback will be provided as per detailed on Blackboard or via swin email. Feedback
should be interpreted in relation to marking criteria.
Suggested Assessment Structure
This is a suggested format for this assessment piece. Variations are acceptable as long as your critique broadly addresses
the issues identified below.
Title Page
The title page contains:
• Title of paper critiqued and journal publication information
• The date the report due.
• The unit name.
• Tutorial day and time.
• Name of student and ID number
• Number of words (not including tables, figures, references or appendices)
Introduction
Summarise the main points of the article (i.e., the article/research paper, not your critique).
COS70004 Usability
Swinburne University of Technology
Critique- 2
Significance
Issues to consider in this section:
What is the purpose of the article?
Is the problem clearly stated?
Is the problem important?
Argument and use of evidence
Issues to consider in this section:
What claims are made?
What evidence is used to support their claims?
How effective is the evidence?

Implications
Issues to consider in this section:
What are the implications of the article for the software development community?
What are the implications of the article to you?
How has this article changed your views?
How could you see applying these ideas to your work practice, or the work practice of your organization?
Conclusions
Summarise your critique
References
A detailed list of material referenced in the text of the assessment. Failure to appropriately reference material from previously
published sources such as the web or journal articles etc (i.e., plagiarism) will result in a FAIL grade. The list of references
must be presented using approved referencing style such as Harvard or APS (see Blackboard/Assessment/ Guide to
Referencing). Include (appropriately referenced) web pages (include data accessed). Include references for any images
used. It should be clear whether you created an image or downloaded it from another source. For example this document
referenced Courage and Baxter (2005), which using APS style, would be referenced as:
Courage, C. & Baxter, K. (2005). Understanding your users: A practical guide to user requirements, methods, tools and
techniques. San Francisco, CA: Morgan-Kaufmann.
* Note: Plagiarism is the submission of work that is not your own for which you claim credit. Work in which plagiarism is
evident will be given an overall fail grade. Please see Avoiding Plagiarism (http://www.swinburne.edu.au/plagiarism).
COS70004 Usability

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Critique

Give a full critique on the article. In a 2 full pages of critiques.
Do you discount and get more customers in,
or do you work to boost the check average
of the guests who show up? These innovative
operators have chosen the latter.
BY PATRICIA COBE AND JOAN M. LANG w HAT HAVEN TYOU TRIED DURING
this prolonged recession to
build sales and traffic in your
restaurant? Prix fixe menus? Check.
Half-price happy hours? Check. BYOB
wine dinners? Check? Two-for-one
meals? Check. Maybe it’s time to stop
checking off deals and start looking at
boosting the check itself. While discounting
may get more people in the door, it doesn’t
always translate into more profit. Plus, it may
cheapen your concept in the long run. But once customers
are sitting at a table or standing at the bar, there are ways
you can get them to spend more. , . .
“’28 Restaurant Busiress AuQiisI 2D09 www.nionkeydisti.com
Profitable partners
You’ve got stunning cocktails, now pair
them with unique bar food and… k-ching!
Mixologists are borrowing fresh, seasonal ingredients from
the kitchen to craft culinary cocktails that sell for a premium.
Now several restaurants are taking the next logical s t e p –
suggesting bar food pairings that complement
those market-driven drinks
and add extra dollars to the tab.
At one sixtyblue in Cbicago, executive
chef Michael McDonald and
mixologist Rich Szydlo collaborated
on the bar menu, incorporating their
shared “market fresh” philosophy.
Szydlo’s seasonal cocktails include the
Spring Fling (Stoli raspberry, fresh
kumquats and mustard greens; $10) to
pair with House-Cured King Salmon
($11) and the Velveteen Rabbit
(Bacardi O, fresh ground ginger and carrot juice; $10) to go
with Steamed Shrimp Shumai ($12). It’s all part of an
effort to transition from a more formal French restaurant
to an accessible contemporary spot.
“At the bar. some people order the cocktail first and some
order the food. The staff is trained to make the pairing
suggestions,” McDonald explains. On Friday nights, a special
$9 duo of a wood-fired pizza and fresh fruit prosecco cocktail
(green apple, blueberry or rhubarb) draws the crowds.
Despite the discounted price, the same level of attention
is given to ingredients and presentation. Plus, DI music
encourages customers to stay and order another drink,
glass of wine, craft beer or snack.
“The event has introduced one sixtyblue to a wider
audience and people come in and make an evening of it,
spending more money,” McDonald reports. “We’ve been
thrilled with the results.”
Put desserts on sale
And watch the check explode
Perhaps more than any other menu category, desserts
are impulse items—put them on sale, and customers
can’t resist.
“We started doing this during the whole carb thing in
men
real value for
the mid-decade, when our
dessert sales were tanking,” says
Gary Mennie. chef of Livingston
[icstaui-ant & Bar in Atlanta.
which offers its desserts $6
apiece, two for $11, three for $16
or four for $20. (These are not
just any old desserts, either—
we’re talking Cinnamon Beignet
with café au lait, macchiato,
gianduja chocolate and Italian
meringue, and Lemon Tart, a
kind of deconstructed lemon meringue pie with hackberry
syrup, yuzu and a butter cookie crust.)
“Now. with this economy, when people are cutting
back on things like appetizers and desserts, we’re definitely
keeping the pastry chef busy,” laughs Mennie. In fact,
approximately .50 percent of all tables order dessert, and
usually in multiples.
“You”il definitely see a party of two ordering four
desserts.’” says the chef, “so they can experience all those
great different elements and flavors. Once they get the
concept, they see our desserts as an indulgence they can’t
afford to miss.”
Click and count
Online ordering is leading some patrons
to spend more
Virtual menus may not be as tactile or tantalizing, but
it seems they can rack up higher customer tabs than real
ones. “People tend to order an additional course—an
appetizer, side dish or dessert—when they order online,”
says Melanie Gordon, director of communications for
delivery.com, a national online delivery service for restaurants
and other retail businesses. Wliile the economy may
be preventing some people from patronizing restaurants,
these same customers are staying home and ordering in.
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she adds. “They’re not spending money on babysitting and
parking, but they’re willing to pay for higher levels of food
and drink.”
Hotels that post room service menus online are reaping
similar rewards. Guests can use a laptop or smartphone to
peruse the choices—which often provide more detail than
an in-room menu—and easily place their order without
dealing with kitchen staff. The Omni Mandalay in Irving,
Texas, reports that guests spend about $3 more when they
order online. To boost the bill further, the hotel chain
plans to add a function that will recommend a wine or side
dish to accompany the item ordered.
Remodel the menu
Make it really, really easy for customers
to find the profit boosters
Like houses, menus can be made to function better:
improving category sales, for instance, or changing the
menu mix. The new menu at Max & Erma’s, the 100-unit
causal chain based in Columbus, Ohio, is a case in point,
lifting sales of profitable beverages, and creating a more
OLD MENO
easy-to-use experience for guests.
Last November, the dated,
cumbersome spiral bound fonnat—
hard for customers to read,
and harder still for franchisees to
update—was remade into a sleek quadrifold
that lays everything out at one glance. Seaters are trained
to lay the menu down on the table in such a way that
customers see those profit-enhancing beverages first thing.
“It’s definitely
improved our drink
sales,” says senior
director of marketing
Karri Benishek, who
presided over multiple
format tests. In addition
to adding trendier,
flavor-packed items
like an Apple Pecan
Salad and the Stackedto-
the-Max Club, the new fonnat also lealures
photographs that can be used to spur sales of selected
items and has strengthened targeted category sales as well.
“From a brajid perspective, we didn’t want a standard
(lalf-portion of Anchor^ Cream Cheese Poppers®
half-portion of Brew City’” Black & Tarf’ Onion Rings
l í
café-style plastic sleeve—we wanted a freestanding piece
that would be really distinctive,” says Benishek. Rather than
flipping back and forth between pages on the old menu,
customers can see the entire menu at a glance. The company
has also done away with the old inserts of specials and
new items, which gave customers even more pieces to study.
Franchisees can now order new components online, making
it easier for them to implement updates and add regionally
specific menu items. “The whole process has been streamlined,
for us and for customers.”
Share the wealth
When guests try a lot of sharable items,
they pay more than for just one entree
Many restaurants offer appetizer and dessert samplers that
are meant to be shared by two or more diners. The Lazy
Goat in Cireenville, South Carolina, goes one step further—
the whole menu is designed for sharing.
“We were looking at the rise of social dining when we
structured the menu,” says GM Aimee Maher. “Our goal was
to encourage guests to try a bunch of different things for the
table and we found that
all those little pieces
add up to a higher price
than one entrée.”
The Lazy Goat’s menu
categories include unconventional
headings such as
“Graze & Nibble” and “To
Share or Not to Share,” as
well as more typical sections
like “Pastas,” “Pizzas”
and “Cheeses,” but all the
portions are shareable “so
people can create their own
variety,” Maher explains.
Instead of constructed small plates, there are items like
Moroccan Lamb ($8}. Papas Bravas ($6) and Grilled
Romaine and Radicchio ($8) that when teamed up, cover
the meat, potatoes and salad portions of a meal. A server
may suggest a cheese plate or pizza to start and Lazy Paella
($19) or Sweet Potato Tagliatelle ($15) to follow.
“The servers see our menu as an opportunity to increase
the check,” says Maher, ‘but the customer’s perception is
that they are getting more for their money.”
proven to increase sales
Increase the number of patrons ordering appetizers by up to 60%.^
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Growing veggies…
and revenue
Let them see your garden and they’ll pay
a premium for its bounty
Guests af Park Ave in Stanton, California, can enjoy drinks
and appetizers in the restaurant’s garden—prepared with
the vegetables, herbs and edible flowers growing in the 14
surrounding raised
beds. Inside, the menu
highlights items that
use garden produce
and customers gravitate
toward them—
even though they’re
priced a little higher.
Chef/owner David Slay
prepares starters such
as Grilled Calamari
with artichokes and
fresh herb emulsion
($11) and Red Oak
Lettuce Salad with fried green tomatoes ($12); a seasonal
grilled vegetable plate entree goes for $20.
“We grow 100 percent of our herbs and lettuces and about
45 percent of our vegetables, including eight varieties of
heirloom tomatoes, lemon cucumbers, poblano peppers
and purple haze carrots,” says Slay. But this extreme local
sourcing and dining ambience are not the only benefits of
Park Ave’s kitchen garden—it has helped raise the average
dinner check. People are tempted by the bounty and are
willing to pay a premium.
Deluxe ingredients
Still command attention-and a big fat
price tag
Menu items that call out high-end ingredients like Kobe
beef, black truffles or single-origin chocolate can command
a premium price—even in a recession. “When people are
spending their hard-earned money dining out, they want to
feel that its worth it,” comments Chris Day, restaurant director
of Gilt and Palace Gate in New York City. “These ingredients
provide a sense of luxury, graciousness and giving.”
( )ii f he Bar and Lounge Menu at Palace Gate, selections
such as Truffle Potato Fries with garlic herb aioli ($12),
Suckling Pig Tacos ($14) and The Gilt Burger with aged
Cheddar, liouso-made pickles and crispy onion rings ($25;
house-made bacon is another $2.50) are strong sellers.
Ordered with a drink, they bring the per-person check to
$30 10 $50. “You can get fries anywhere,” says Day “Truffles
elevate our fries and entice our guests.”
Both Gilt and Palace Gate have found it more effective
to promote upscale and house-made ingredients tlian
“name the farm or local source,” he adds. “You can’t be in
the ctistomer’s face about where something comes from.
It’s better to impart a subtle sense of luxury.”
Add-ons add up
Just give customers the option to buy
more and guess what… they buy more
When the Carlsbad, California-based Pat & Oscar’s
revamped its menu, the family fast-casual chain didn’t want
to raise prices. But thanks to the addition of new menu
categories and upgrade options, the average guest check
has gone up anyway.
Two of the new categories are shareable appetizers
and desserts—traditionally a hard sell in last casual.
Now, Pat & Oscar’s guests can add on a starter of chicken
wings for $6.99 or Chili Cheese Potato Wedges for $3.99
when they order a family combo meal for $24.99. And
the new Big O Cookie ($3.99)—freshly baked in a 5-inch
pizza pan and topped
with vanilla bean ice
cream—is increasing
dessert orders. “When
people see it walk
through the dining room,
they immediately want
it,” says John Kaufman,
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Over 30% of operators use special events to drive traffic.^
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CEO and president. “It’s an easy add-on to the check.”
“We think discounting is the wrong way to go in this economy,”
adds Kaufman. “Instead, we’re spending money on
improving the dining experience to create value for our guests.”
Care for an appetizer
bef ere that appetizer?
At a low price point, snacks
can sneak on-and beef up—the tab
Savvy menumakers have found a brand-new category
to exploit: snacks, nibbles, tastes and other gently priced
tidbits that are easy to execute but distinctive enough
to entice diners to order them as a kind of pre-app to
the meal.
Many have a cultural or ethnic bent. Locanda Verde, a
new Mediterranean restaurant in New York City, calls them
piccolini (Italian for “little”), and at $6 to $9, the seasonal
marinated vegetables, crostini and seasonal cheeses are simpler
and less expensive than such antipasti as rabbit terrine,
housemade headcheese and wood-fired king prawns ($11 to
$15). Nearby
Aldea has its
Portuguese
Pinxtos y Picas
(Mini Tapas),
while at
Michael’s
Genuine Food
& Drink
in Miami, the
Sn;icks
menu features the likes of devilled eggs and thick-cut potato
chips with pan-fried onion dip.
Ecco, a Fifth Group restaurant in Atlanta, has done
amazingly well with mix-and-match Meats and Cheeses,
as well as Taste & Share items such as mixed olives and
piquillo peppers stuffed with mushrooms, sherry and
Manchego that sell for $4 to $9 a pop. These appear on
the menu—and often on tables—before the appetizers,
pizzas, pasta and mains.
“Our entire menu revolves around the concept of sharing,”
says owner/partner Robby Kukler, “but especially in this
economy it’s great to be able to feature choices at these
price points.”
men
Serve it up
Your menu is a great tool, but your
servers need to know how to sell it
New York City’s four-star Restaurant Daniel is renowned for
its elegant and attentive service—a component that has
recently grown more competitive. “Were putting pressure
on the waitstali to increase check averages by posting each
server’s numbers for the week,” reported owner Daniel
Boulud at a keynote panel during the NIÎA show in May.
“This forces them to keep up.”
Intensive server training, of course, plays a big part at
Daniel. Same goes for Chicago’s Fulton’s on the River, a
steak and seafood house. Here, the staff is trained to work
at every station—
host stand, kitchen,
bar, server assistant
and finally, server.
They are also tested
on iheir knowledge
of the menu and
must conduct mock
service before taking
care of live guests. This reinforces appropriate suggestive
selling opportunities, says GM Seth Kagy.
For example, after a lively group of six orders drinks and
entrees, the server is trained to “read the table” and make
a good decision on what appetizers and sides to recommend
for sharing. Or he can offer a liqueur to add to coffee
service—something that’s not on the printed menu but
would enhance the meal. “We don’t want servers to be too
pushy—we just want to make people aware of what’s
available. And when guests are receptive, you can upsell
more,” explains Kagy.
by the sip
or the glass
Give wine drinkers more options and
they’ll give you more money
open the list at Restaurant Sent Sovi, In Saratoga, California,
a wine centric place about an hour south of San Francisco,
and you’ll notice a selection of 20 different bottlings available
by the 5-oz. glass, 3-oz. demi or 1-oz taste, priced accordingly.
proven best, proven margins
Sweet potatoes are one of the hottest up-and-coming sides.^
With their naturally healthful appeal, McCairf Harvest Splendor’” Svjeei Potato
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operator in-unit evaluation
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t t Menu Trends DIRECT, 2007
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©2009 McCain Foods USA, Inc.
“About three years ago I realized that there was an underserved
need around here for ‘nice’ wine by the glass,” says
josiah Sione, chef/owner and a self-described “cork dork.”
“You know bow it is: You’re out with your wife and a bottle’s
not enough but two bottles and you’ll get a DUI—and
you end up ordering a glass of wine you don’t really want.”
That and a thousand other wine situations—pairings,
flights, inahility to compromise on a particular bottle—
convinced Slone to get serious about his by-the-glass
program, aided and
abetted by the OZ
precision pouring
system that stores
wines at carefully
calibrated temperatures
and keeps
them fresh for
up to a month once
opened.
“That means I
can offer something
really special, like
a Chateau d’Yquem
or a great old
Cabernet that people
would never be
able to try if it were
only available by
the bottle,” says
Slone. From a business
perspective, the system keeps portions true and
keeps the product fresh long enough to sell it—and from
a marketing perspective Sent Sobi not only sells more
wine, but it also pulls in wine-savvy customers who
wouldn’t ordinarily come.
Bread for bread
Make it a signature item and it’s easy for
customers to accept the price
American diners might be used to getting bread with
their meal, but several canny operators are figuring
out ways to charge for the experience.
Especially with todays European-style
specialty breads and small-plates
dominated menus—not to
mention carb-consciousness—
bread is being seen as a signature
item that carries added value.
The Island Fish Company, a “tiki bar
and restaurant” in Marathon, Florida, lists
38 Resíauraíit Business August 2Ö09 www.morkeydish.com
garlic bread and a
basket of artisan
bread among its
mix-and-match
side dishes, which
also include fried
plantains, black
beans, onion rings, fries and tater lots.
At the new Recipe in New York, the $3 bread basket
is stocked with half-a-dozen interesting breads from
such well-known local bakeries as Grandaisy and Tom
Cat, accompanied by New York honey and butter with
crunchy sea salt.
The list of cured meats and cheese at Eivissa, Dudley
Nieto’s new Chicago restaurant specializijig in pintxos,
tapas and sangria, lists bread and olive oil for a buck.
Before it closed for remodeling, the 2 to 10 p.m. Wine-
Down menu at Littlefields Wine Bar, Bistro and Gourmet
Market in West Fargo. North Dakota, listed a $4.50 basket of
artisan bread with roast garlic bean dip and herb butter
for enjoying with its cheese plates.
Profits on the side
Who knew so many people wanted to
buy more side dishes?
A la carte side dishes may be a growing trend, but the folks
at Redbones, a $7 million-a-year barbecue shack in
Somerville, Massachusetts, have turned sides into a centerpiece.
The 32-item Apps & Sides section of the menu offers
everything from $.99 Atomic Corn Relish to items like the
$5.99 chili verde thai do double-duty as appetizers, and
along the way features such Southern-fried favorites such
as succotash, fried okra, beans, collard greens and even
“potlikkers”—at $2 to $4 prices that have approximately
70 percent of all tables saying “why not.”
“Our type of menu traditionally has many kinds of
side dishes anyway,” says owner Robert Gregory. “And we
have so many regulars and expats from the South that
we sell a lot of sides.” The usual mashed and fries are
inevitable top-sellers, but you’d be surprised how
many Bostonians order fried okra and corn pudding.
As for the daily Kitchen Soup (just $1.99),
it may not be a best seller, but it’s a great
vehicle for the various bean brotbs that
. ^ I lie kitchen generates daily, along with
. t’ggies and other hearty stuff that enough
people order to make it worth Redbones’
while. Ü
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