By Ethan Gibble
Table Bases and Equalizers
It’s common in foodservice to find a “sturdy” table’s leg propped up by sugar packets or coasters. Another familiar sight is tables pushed together for large groups, with uncomfortable, spill-inducing ridges where the tables meet.
Andy O’Donnell, marketing director for FLAT Tech, says that props like sugar packets are temporary and often lead to spilled drinks and disappointed guests. These “solutions” cost money, damage the environment because of the large amount of disposables that are needlessly thrown away and can even attract vermin, he adds. The company partnered with YouGov on a survey that found 75 percent of people thought these props look unsightly, further demonstrating the potential for brand damage.
FLAT Tech products offer a permanent solution by saving operators time and money while improving safety, hygiene and the overall dining experience. The table bases use hydraulic PAD technology to automatically adjust to uneven surfaces. They also include locking valves that allow for seamless table alignment by simply lifting the table in the direction of the adjoining tabletop. FLAT Tech has been working to make wobbly and misaligned tables a thing of the past since 2004, but the company’s products have been a particular asset throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.
“During this COVID era, our products have been in significant demand – particularly as operators have utilized new outdoor areas in order to facilitate socially distanced dining,” O’Donnell says. “Waitstaff no longer need to adjust and readjust potentially unhygienic table glides that are in contact with the floor. This creates a hygienic environment and reduces the potential risks of cross-contamination.”
The bases assemble in minutes and are compatible with most tabletops on the market. Equalizers, meanwhile, use many of the elements found in PAD technology to give operators a reliable retrofit option. When replacing a wobbly table’s entire base isn’t ideal, users can instead replace the table’s existing screw-in glides with Equalizers to quickly stabilize the table by gently pressing on the tabletop.
What Salespeople Need to Know
FLAT Tech has navigated the recent supply chain challenges by working closely with partners to maintain healthy stock levels in the United States and around the world. O’Donnell says that the company has stock arriving to its warehouse in Iowa on a constant basis and is managing to fulfill orders.
With products available in more than 40 countries that are used by some of the world’s largest brands, the company designed its lines to accommodate the varied needs of the foodservice and hospitality industries. Standard FLAT Tech bases are available in dining and bar heights, while custom heights and height-adjustable models provide versatility and help customers comply with ADA requirements. Their footprint ranges from 17 to 36 inches to support anything from small coffee shop tabletops to those used in large, family-style restaurants. Cantilever and bolt-down bases are available for concepts that require fixed seating requirements. FLAT Tech also offers custom design and color options to chains and larger customers for further customization.
“We don’t believe in limiting the customer to a niche range of products, but want to help improve their operations and customer experiences regardless of what table base design they use or require,” O’Donnell says.