The use of Tapingo is causing problems for students and employees of the dining locations.
Tapingo is great in theory, but there are some definite problems with the app that should have been addressed before it was launched.
Students can now order food from the on-campus locations without having to wait in line through the app, Tapingo. It allows people to tap their phone and go to class or wherever they need to go.
This service was implemented by Dining Services, Student Affairs and students as an effort to fill a need to eliminate the time students had to spend waiting in lines for food. The partnership between these groups showed the students that offices across campus are interested in what students need or want and they are willing to look for ways to give students what they desire.
We, at The Collegian, believe Tapingo is great in theory, but it needs some drastic improvements to make it actually worth using.
The first is the name—no one knows how to say it. The representatives say it’s pronounced as “Tuh-ping-go,” but it looks like “Tap-en-go.” One person on The Collegian staff thought it was called Topanga, like from Boy Meets World.
The students who use the app receive a text message saying when their food is ready, and sometimes these texts are sent before the food is actually ready causing the Tapingo user to wait anyway. This eliminates the whole reason to have and use the app.
The app is convenient, but at what cost? Students who don’t use the app are forced to wait in line even longer, because Tapingo orders go in right away with regular orders. This causes frustration for students who don’t use Tapingo.
Another concern about the app is for the employees. They have to do twice as much work and are not paid more to do it or get more work space to deal with double the orders. They have to deal with the ramifications of Tapingo sending out early alerts and the upset students who waited in line. It would be helpful if there was one specific person at each of the dining locations that dealt solely with Tapingo orders.
Also, Tapingo is causing an increase in take-out boxes, which doesn’t seem like a big deal. Who cares about a take-out box? But, more students are using Tapingo to take their orders to go. This causes our campus to produce more waste even though we are trying to make campus more “green.” Maybe there should be an option for students to choose between eat in and take out.
Tapingo is another option for busy students, but we, at The Collegian, believe there are other issues that could be addressed on campus rather than causing another problem by trying to make something better.