HungerRush Interviews Corey Rimmel of Hot Box Cookies
How long have you been working in the food service industry? What originally prompted you to want to work within this industry, especially within such a unique segment of it?
I opened Hot Box Cookies in October 2008, but I have had other restaurant jobs in the past. As a college student, I was a huge fan of late night delivery and wanted another option besides sandwiches and pizza. Cookies have always made me think of good memories from my childhood and I thought Columbia residents would love to have them delivered warm to their doorstep.
You started Hot Box Cookies at the young age of 24, correct? How did the idea of a cookie delivery business come to you and how did you make it happen? You received an entrepreneurial award from your university when you started Hot Box, right?
I was actually 20 years old when I started. November 2nd was my 25th birthday. Read above for my inspiration. The idea first started as a joke, but after months of planning I decided to go for it and was able to obtain a loan and sign a lease on a prime downtown property.
Being so young made the process difficult, but I was able to receive a lot of help from entrepreneurial organizations and other businesspeople in Columbia. In 2009 I was the University of Missouri Student Entrepreneur of the year.
Businesswise, do you feel that modern technology, specifically an all-in-one solution such as HungerRush, is mandatory in today’s demanding & competitive food service industry?
There’s no doubt in my mind that a POS system is necessary if you run a food service establishment.
Had you used a POS system prior to HungerRush, and if so, who did you use, when did you make the switch and what can you tell us about the experience?
I previously used an Aloha all in one POS system, which was not as effective as the HungerRush system. So far I have been very pleased with the HungerRush POS.
Do you feel that choosing the wrong POS system for your business can have a seriously negative effect on one’s success?
HungerRush assists with speeding up our operations because it allows for different order types to be taken at Definitely. My reporting was off, my employees were frustrated, and I was unable to efficiently keep track and dispatch my deliveries. Delivery restaurants can definitely benefit from a system like HungerRush.
Was there a particular issue that led you to choosing an all-in-one POS system like HungerRush for Hot Box Cookies? How helpful is HungerRush’s delivery module to Hot Box?
Price and effectiveness of the delivery aspect were the two most important issues. The delivery module of HungerRush has been a huge upgrade from our previous system and the delivery wait time has improved.
Every business has individual needs, different from everyone else’s. I would say that is especially so in the cookie delivery business! What attributes of the HungerRush POS have most impressed you when it comes to the specific needs for Hot Box?
I have different zones and delivery fees because I offer delivery to all of Columbia. I also give my drivers compensation for making deliveries that are far way. These two features both have worked great for my business so far.
Do you feel that HungerRush has added to your brand in any way? After implementing HungerRush, in what areas did you immediately see positive results?
Yes; delivery and order taking speed.
What has been the most rewarding part of your journey thus far with Hot Box Cookies?
Seeing customers enjoy the product I offer and order so frequently.
Do you have any specific goals you plan on working toward?
I am working hard to improve efficiency and create a store that can run without me being there.
Being as successful as you are, what advice would you give to others out there hoping to one day own their own unique food service concept?
Make sure people will actually buy what you plan to sell and that you can make money off it before you open a restaurant. Create a brand that is memorable so word of mouth becomes your best form of advertising.