Digital transformation

Chipotle’s recipe for digital transformation: Cloud plus AI

CTO Curt Garner bolstered the fast food chain’s digital ambitions by committing fully to the cloud, laying the groundwork for future developments that would enhance the diner’s experience and the business side of things.

Chipotle Mexican Grill is piloting a robotic arm dubbed “Chippy” that prepares its famed chips every day without human labor. Chipotle’s digital business in 2022 was $3.5 billion, compared to $100 million before ordering processes were implemented. The company’s wholly owned business model enabled it to deploy advanced technologies uniformly. Chipotle’s digital transformation was in place well before the pandemic, says CEO Brian Garner. Chipotle uses Microsoft Azure as its digital commerce platform, and its internal business functions like ERP have migrated from on-premises Oracle to Oracle Cloud. Chipotle has moved 98% of its workloads to the cloud, allowing it to shut down its data center in Denver and roll out a suite of next-generation, cloud-native services. Furthermore, Chipotle is utilizing many of Microsoft Azure’s cloud offerings, including the platform’s artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) modeling services.

The company also recently implemented RFID in 100 restaurants to help track its food supply from local farms to distribution centers. Chipotle’s CTO says his team is heavily reliant on the company’s cloud-based infrastructure, including a data lake built on Snowflake.

Source: CIO