Tock is only two years old but the idea originated several years ago out of a simple frustration: no-shows (people who bail on their reservation) are costing restaurants money. Nick Kokonas and Chef Grant Achatz opened Alinea here in Chicago to international fanfare in 2005 - now a perennial Michelin three star and widely considered one of the best restaurants in the world. For years they were spending $140,000 a year on staff dedicated to managing reservations and losing an average of $260,000 a year on no-shows. Convinced there had to be a better way, Nick built a crude ticketing system to solve the problems and lower labor costs. The homemade platform was a success. Nick founded Tock with Brian Fitzpatrick, founder of Google’s Chicago engineering office, to turn this simple idea into a robust product complete with all the tools a restaurant needs to succeed.
Tock is, at its simplest, a reservation system. Guests use Tock to make reservations and pay for experiences up front like chef’s tasting menus, kitchen tables, or special events, while restaurants use Tock to manage these reservations (book, edit, cancel, reschedule, etc), manage their guests (view and edit guest notes, reservation notes, tags, photos, dietary restrictions, reservation history, bios, etc), manage services (assign guests to tables, text message guests, accept walk-in guests, etc), and review financial reporting.
But we’re much more than that.
Running a restaurant isn’t easy. Even the world’s best restaurants struggle to make ends meet. From rising labor, real estate, and food costs, to legal complexity regarding tipping and overtime pay, to unsustainable no-show rates, a restaurant is faced with a daunting task at becoming profitable. We want to change that! We want to solve the problems that other restaurant software has deemed too hard or too complex. All while making it fast and beautiful.
Many of the world’s best restaurants use Tock, from Alinea, Acadia, Milk Room, and Smyth and Loyalist here in Chicago, to Eleven Madison Park, The French Laundry, The Fat Duck, minbar, Noma, Atelier Crenn, and hundreds more across the world.
We are an extremely passionate group dedicated to changing the world of restaurants. Maybe that sounds crazy but we’ve amassed a team capable of making it happen.
Most software companies are just that–software companies. They are devoid of expression and emotion and are confined to the screen. We’re not fans of this idea. Yes, we are a software company, but we are also a hospitality company in a very personal industry. We want Tock and our brand to reflect that. We want to show people that we aren’t just a cold, software company but something much more. That’s where design comes in. We look up to companies like Airbnb, Warby Parker, and MailChimp as tech leaders who understand the importance of good design and strive to inject creativity into everything they do.
That’s where you come in.
We need an experienced designer who can lead all design and marketing related projects. You’d own the brand and identity of Tock, design (and develop, if you have coding skills) marketing websites to promote our brand and product, create online ads, design the apps and websites guests use to search and discover restaurants, and find ways to take the Tock brand offline by working on printed materials–restaurant welcome kits, sales materials, and Tock swag are a few examples but this is your show so anything you believe will impact our business and product is yours to explore.
We’re looking for someone with several years of design experience–at least 5 years sounds about right. You’re independent, capable of discussing design strategy and vision with other team leaders, enjoy holding feedback sessions, and strive for pixel perfection but also understand the importance of speed and iteration. And because of the variety of projects and various mediums you’d be working in, experience in both print and digital is a must. Coding skills are not required but certainly a nice-to-have.
Most importantly we want someone who is motivated and excited about what we’re doing and the problems we are trying to solve.
We are a small startup but take the commitment to our team very seriously. We offer health, dental, and vision insurance, 401k matching, daily catered lunches, competitive salaries, and equity in the company.
If you’ve made it this far, then we’re already off to a good start. Next we’d love to see your work and a letter answering the simple question, why Tock?
If you have questions, let us know.
Awesome. We are all ears. Send us an email with their contact information, a message introducing us, or have the person applying mention your name. If we end up hiring your special someone, we’d like to say thanks by treating you and a guest to a 3-Course Cocktail Progression at The Aviary here in Chicago. I’m sure legally we need to include some crazy fine print like when this offer expires or that it can’t be redeemable for cash, but we can sort out these boring details later. Thanks in advance!
We do have one very specific request: no recruiters please.