I have many memories of McDonald’s. My Grandad used to take me for a lunch when we went to visit my Great-Grandad. My Mum frequently took me as a treat after my swimming lessons. I used to pop by with school friends. I headed there for my work lunches too sometimes. My Hubby also shares a love for McDonald’s but there seems to be a bit of a stigma around it.
I was recently invited along to find out all the fun things that is happening with over 1,300 McDonald’s restaurants across the UK. The event happened to be taking place in the restaurant just around the corner from my Mum’s house – my childhood McDonald’s. So I arranged a day with my Grandad and Mum then headed back to Essex with P2 and P3 for some family time in my home town.
I was amazed at how much it has changed. Initially walking through the door there was two giant touch screens. These are being rolled out around the country and my new local McDonald’s doesn’t have them just yet. These giant iPads are used to make ordering quicker and easier for everybody. It even has an option to click for disabled guests so the screen becomes more accessible. The full menu is on the screen including items you can purchase to support the Ronald McDonald House charities. I especially loved that you could choose whether to have the pickles (yes they are pickles not Gherkins) or not, basically you could completely customise your order.
They are also putting in a new Table Service system which I think is absolutely amazing! In the Rayleigh McDonald’s branch there are three zones and the staff will deliver your food to your table. This makes the dining experience much smoother and I can see this being a huge hit for families like mine when you need to keep an eye on your children and not focusing on ordering at the counter. Some tables also have tablets to explore with internet access, games and more for kids and even adults! There are also some device charging points too.
After hearing about the front of house experience changes and the new things being brought in across the country, I was allowed to head behind the scenes for a little tour and I even got the chance to make my own Big Mac Burger. In the training room I found out about all the different opportunities there are for workers at McDonald’s. I was so shocked if I’m honest. When I was at school, having a job at McDonald’s meant that you were a no goer and a little brain dead. But actually I was so wrong! There are so many different career paths you can go on from working at McDs and many of them even get head hunted by competitors!
When I got the chance to learn how to make a Big Mac, and also to learning about how the kitchen works, I really began to realise just how hard it possibly is to work at McDonald’s and I honestly don’t think I could cut it. Apart from my height issue which I could see being a pretty big downfall, there’s a real skill to making a burger correctly. The rules are pretty strict in the kitchen too. They have set tempering times for foods, they don’t leave any food out for longer than 15 minutes and each staff member has to wash their hands every half an hour. Oh and of course hair nets, aprons and hats are required too which I got to take home.
I found my whole experience at the McDonald’s branch completely eye opening. I feel quite content taking myself and my family to McDonald’s. I also feel that there is a huge passion behind the name too. They care for their staff and importantly they are really listening to the voice of their customers. Here’s a vlog from my day back in Essex. Enjoy!