It’s no secret that the F&B industry has taken a serious hit during the Covid-19 pandemic.
As more F&B businesses pivot online to cope with the dipping sales, older hawkers are at a disadvantage as they struggle to adapt to multiple online delivery platforms.
To help our local hawkers tide through these difficult times, SG Together Alliance for Action (AfA) – Online Ordering for Hawkers has announced two pilot programs.
By the end of this year, various delivery platforms will be participating under a common acquirer model program. The pilot will cover 400 stalls across 14 hawker centres in Singapore.
Under this scheme, consumers will have the option to mix and match food items across stalls for bundle orders, which are put together by centralised hawker captains who will interface with the hawkers directly.
Under this model, WhyQ — the common acquirer for hawkers — will use its existing relationships with hawker stalls to onboard them onto Deliveroo, FoodPanda and Grab, such as uploading their menus onto the platforms.
Hawkers will have easy access to all customers of participating online ordering platforms and will enjoy the convenience of an integrated interface to receive and manage orders from all platforms.
Orders will be received either through a single device, or on-site Hawker Captains at each hawker centre who will be tasked to place and coordinate orders.
WhyQ will manage transactions and payments to hawkers, with same-day payments and no commissions charged to hawkers. Consumers can access a wider selection of hawker stalls through their preferred online ordering platform.
The best part is that hawkers will not be charged commission fees or onboarding fees.
More digital support for hawkers
In addition to the common acquirer program, the National Environment Agency (NEA) has set up a Digital Support for Hawkers (DSH) to develop a set of best practices for hawkers.
The NEA and SG Digital Office (SDO) launched an awareness and education campaign to help stallholders understand how to supplement physical transactions with online ordering options.
Between June and September, SDO Digital Ambassadors has engaged 5,500 hawkers.
Hawkers will get further targeted support to help them benefit from going online, with new initiatives by the SG Together Alliance for Action (AfA) – Online Ordering for Hawkers.
This includes creating a Facebook page for each centre, facilitating community group buys through the Facebook page and organising tie-ups with organisations to make bulk meal orders.
This group will provide support to help less digitally savvy hawkers improve their online presence. Meanwhile, the DSH group will provide peer support to help less digitally savvy hawkers embrace digital opportunities.
To date, 30 hawker centres have expressed interest in piloting this initiative from October to December 2021.