AI May Be Yum Brands’ Secret Sauce

Way back in 2019, when very few people were thinking about AI as a synthetic employee, Yum Brands (YUM) had a vision for a “SuperApp” that would bring its primary systems – labor and inventory management, kitchen and delivery management, and point of sale – in-house.

Joe Park, CTO of Yum Brands (the parent company of Taco Bell, Pizza Hut, KFC, and Habit Burger Grill), says the company has now adopted an “AI-first” approach to its operations. The goal is to better position the company to adapt to rising operational costs and evolving consumer expectations (such as AI-powered voice for drive-thrus and other CX experiences).

Despite this seemingly obvious human replacement strategy (I don’t think it is a human replacement strategy, BTW), Yum asserts the importance of its workforce, viewing technology as a tool to augment the employee and customer experience. A closer look at the way the company is executing on its SuperApp affirms their commitment to their workforce as a core asset.

Yum’s SuperApp has intrigued me since I learned about it years ago. It will be interesting to watch it evolve in the Generative Era.

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Disclosure: This is not a sponsored post. I am the author of this article and it expresses my own opinions. I am not, nor is my company, receiving compensation for it.

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