It is now up to the readers to vote on the nominations to decide the Reader’s Choice Innovator of the Year, to be honored at the Self-Service Innovation Summit in December.

Self-service is on the move like never before, and astute consumers and businesses are finding ways to get things done faster and more effectively.

The third annual Self-Service Innovation Summit Dec. 14-16 in Hollywood, Florida will recognize the products and the people contributing to our dynamic industry.

Meanwhile, readers can vote on the teams and individuals making a difference in our industry.

The Reader’s Choice Award: Innovator of the Year combines two awards from the prior two years. This award recognizes the person or company that consistently demonstrates leadership in self service. Winners in this category will be selected via a reader poll on and

The Self-Service Innovation Awards will be presented during the Self-Service & Innovation Summit on Wednesday Dec. 15, 2022.

Readers of Kiosk Marketplace and Vending Times submitted nominations from August through Oct. 14. A panel of judges reviewed the nominations and selected the winners in several categories.

Readers, however, will serve as judges for the Reader’s Choice Innovator of the Year.

A judge’s panel reviewed the numerous nominations for the Reader’s Choice awards and narrowed them down to six nominees. It is now up to the readers to vote on these six nominations.

Votes are due at midnight on Nov. 4, 2022.

Following are descriptions for the Reader’s Choice nominations. Cast your votes below at the bottom of this article.

Brooklyn Dumpling Shop

New York restauranter Stratis Morfogen launched Brooklyn Dumpling Shop in 2021, a fast casual dumpling restaurant based on the Automat vending machine that keeps food at the proper temperature and is unlocked by a code texted to the customer or delivery driver for efficient, zero human interaction pick up.

The original Automats were restaurants where patrons purchased ready-to-eat food by inserting coins to unlock compartments containing meals that were refilled from a kitchen behind the wall.

The Brooklyn Dumpling Shop sends guests a text notification to get their delivery from a marked locker, which will open automatically when the guest scans their barcode.

Lockers storing hot food light red indicating it’s 100 degrees, while chilled lockers are blue lit and 28 degrees and auburn lit lockers indicate room temperature.

Morfogen also implemented online/app ordering, kiosk ordering and foresees using robots in the kitchen to make the 32 unique dumplings and bowls Brooklyn Dumpling Shop is known for.

BurgerFi International

Between 2021 and 2022, BurgerFi International tested and expanded several new technologies.

To satisfy the hunger of guests on-the-go, BurgerFi announced it will be the first restaurant to launch in-car ordering in the new generation of 5G interactive cars in the fall of 2022. Through a partnership with — an in-car retail marketplace that brings safe, easy, curated shopping to the dashboard of consumers’ favorite cars — guests will be able to order BurgerFi favorites from the comfort of their vehicle by using their voice or their car’s interactive dashboard. It notifies the restaurant when the guest arrives so their fresh order can be delivered curbside.

BurgerFi is also testing streamlined ordering transactions to optimize the service experience. In December 2021, BurgerFi launched a pilot program with Grubbrr to test the effectiveness of self-ordering technology to decrease operating costs, minimize dependency on labor, increase revenue and provide customers with a better overall experience.

Throughout the pilot, the Samsung Kiosk powered by Grubbrr showed significant lift in sales, with average ticket sizes increasing by 18.5% and 52% of customers opting into upsells. The kiosks also absorbed up to 133 orders per day on average, accounting for 75% of total orders placed in the store.

Following the successful pilot, BurgerFi selected Grubbrr as its exclusive self-ordering technology provider in June 2022. The kiosks are currently being deployed across 22 of BurgerFi’s corporate locations, while franchises will have the opportunity to opt-in, as well. A total of 38 locations are live or slated to go live soon.

GoTab Inc.

Combining restaurant operator insights with technology, GoTab Inc. has introduced point-of-sale, on-demand mobile ordering and payments, and kitchen display systems designed to help restaurants, breweries, bars and food halls as well as sports, hotel and event food and beverage retailers drive sales and reduce labor costs.

This past July, GoTab launched its new feature, EasyTab, on which the company has a patent application pending. EasyTab bridges traditional service with digital, on-demand ordering, reordering and payment, empowering both restaurant guests and servers by making opening, closing, reordering and transferring tabs from bar to table fast, easy and hassle-free.

Through EasyTab, guests can open a tab via QR code or the traditional way through a server or bartender. When prompted to keep the tab open, the server (or guest) simply dips or swipes the card provided for payment and enters the guest’s mobile number. A link to the open tab is then provided via text, and the guest can access the tab on their mobile device, allowing them to order, re-order and pay throughout their visit from anywhere in the venue. And because their payment method is automatically applied to their open tab, they can split or settle their tab without having to wait for a physical check or head to the counter to pay.

GoTab is also innovating payment and operations at multi-operator locations such as food halls, festivals, stadiums and other venues with the recent launch of GoTab for multi-operator locations. The new functionality allows guests to order from all vendors in a parent location via one unified QR code, simplifying payment for the consumer and providing vendors with increased visibility, customization, sales transparency and automated vendor payouts.

In addition, GoTab recently launched its radio-frequency identification technology, which is designed to streamline mobile ordering and payment for guests at single- and multi-unit restaurants, food halls, hotels, festivals and other event venues. Through smart tag technology, RFID allows consumers to charge items from participating locations back to a single key card or wristband, creating a seamless ordering and payment experience for guests and driving increased transactions for vendors.

Upon entering the location, guests receive a branded key card or wristband unique to each person, to which they can allocate funds from a credit or debit card. From there, guests can charge food or retail items from multiple merchants back to a single tab with the tap of the card or band at each purchase station. Payment is then received through the pre-allocated funds or charged back to a hotel stay or restaurant tab to be paid at the end based on the venue and usage. Additionally, the technology enables an automatic refund for guests if they spend less than what was loaded onto their card or band. This is another solution that enables the seamless guest experience that consumers are now expecting everywhere they go.

Oladunni Olowoporoku

Oladunni Olowoporoku, an engineer at Syncreon in Atlanta, has created and sustained a clean, safe working environment that meets world class standards. Accomplishments include:

  • She has encouraged all employees in the safety team to get trained and certified by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. The team has taken professional safety courses from Georgia Institute of Technology.
  • She has taught and led a project management class and projects for the safety team and also implemented the Strap Poka for banding of materials in the warehouse, a machine that simultaneously places numerous plastic straps that can be vertical or horizontal or a mixture of both, around a pallet and through pallet voids in a few seconds.
  • She implemented an exoskeleton to offer relief for the back for all employees in the warehouse.
  • She has worked with the Google Logistics Operations Safety team to implement a Boots on the Ground Program that enables managers and supervisors to coach associates on the best practices on how to make safety a priority and managers can recognize and give kudos to associates that are following the safety protocols required for their various tasks.
  • She implemented and ensured that Dome mirrors were mounted on every forklift in the facility and created a materials handling equipment checklist to ensure that all associates are doing the proper safety checks before getting on a piece of equipment to operate it.
  • All these employee engagement implementations have reduced turnover rates from 4% to 2.3%.


Sharebox is a burglar protected, self-service outdoor key exchange kiosk. Customers are able to drop off and pick up car keys at their convenience, making car service check-in faster and available 24/7.

The technology can be customized for retailers to curate a branded customer journey.

Participating brands including Porsche, Volkswagen, Audi, Toyota and Europcar have adopted the service in more than 100 markets.


StoreX offers a robotic solution for a self-service, fully-automated pickup store. The StoreX pickup store saves up to 85% of storage floorspace, improves productivity and accuracy and interfaces with both humans and delivery robots.

StoreX Smart Towers can serve as fully-automated stores, nano-fulfillment hubs, automated dark stores, parcel lockers, mail boxes, supplies or personal storage stations, robotic cafeterias, bots/drones nesting and charging docks.

The units can be installed in various formats: stand-alone, built-in, drive-thru, curb-side, store-in-store and smart storefront.

Cast your vote for Innovator of the Year
Voting ends November 4, 2022

About Networld Media Group

Founded in 2000, Networld Media Group is a leading business-to-business (B2B) media communications company specializing in digital media, associations and events in the tech, banking, retail and food service industries. Online properties include,,,,,,,, and Annual events include the Fast Casual Executive Summit, the Restaurant Franchising & Innovation Summit, the Bank Customer Experience Summit (BCX), the Interactive Customer Experience Summit (ICX) and the Self-Service Innovation Summit.

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