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Will Self-Serve Beer Render Bartenders Obsolete?

The Rise of the Machines

Just since the turn of the century, we’ve seen cameras in our phones, music you can carry around, books you can electronically read, Skyping your parents, and Blu-ray movies. Not to mention the rise of Apple, Twitter (follow us), YouTube, and Facebook (follow us here as well!). So it’s no surprise that automatic beer dispensers started appearing in the 2010s.

The Pros of Automatic Beer Dispensers

Most providers boast cost savings, time savings, and the element of general curiosity as selling points for installing one or many in your establishment. The benefits include automatic ID checking, charging by the ounce, and limiting the number of purchases. Some can be used with or without WiFi.

The Cons of Automatic Beer Dispensers

The largest concern for installing an automatic beer dispenser is that you can't oversee a situation that may have disastrous results for your establishment. Switching to these mechanized dispensers, the manufacturers are recommending that your staff's duties would switch from the service of alcohol to the monitoring of alcohol consumption. Most importantly, machines lack the understanding of the legal duty to care and machines don't have the ability to provide the human touch. The amount of alcohol in a drink does not give us the ability to know the human reactions to the drinks, especially without sufficient alcohol server training. Servers also lose the ability to provide rich customer service and engaging conversation.  

My question is….who’s getting the tips the dispenser is taking away from a human server? Does it increase the base pay for servers when one is installed? Weigh in below.