Exciting innovation behind the scenes at McDonald's #yournewmcdonalds

One of the things I love about McDonald's is the fact that wherever you are in the world you know you can turn up tired, hungry, jet lagged or jaded and know you can order familiar food even if you don't speak the language.

McDonald's Big Mac and Fries

Although I love eating like the locals when I am travelling, sometimes it's just so easy to take the children for a "Maccy-D's" especially if like me you have a child with autism who finds eating even his usual fave foods in strange surroundings stressful.

For instance I know that when we are in Cyprus next week, if all else fails I can take him the McDonald's in Paphos and treat him to a cheeseburger he will happily eat in comfortingly familiar surroundings while we tuck into the local speciality which last time was a "Greek Burger" with a lamb pattie in pitta-style bread. They also offered blueberry milkshakes and pies which were delicious.

So yes, thanks to the styling teams from McDonald's, wherever you are you cannot fail to recognise the iconic branding, but look carefully and in some lobbies and behind the scenes you might spot big changes afoot.

Some of you may have already used the touch screen ordering system which for a busy mum of 7  like me cuts out the stress of having to remember all the orders and who wants what drink with which meal. I can even customise on-screen so no more refusing to tweak every single burger (no lettuce on this one, no cheese on that one) on the grounds I will get it wrong and there will be whining.

McDonald's touch screen ordering stations

With the simple tick box and menu addition buttons offering customisation options you can add or subtract ingredients to your meal quickly and accurately meaning far fewer snafus at the counter.

McDonald's customising food order screen

I am particularly grateful too for the table service option now available in many restaurants which means I don't have to balance trays and herd the family to tables. I'm afraid we cheat somewhat and find a table first before ordering - apologies if this is annoying but try ordering meals for nine or ten then discovering you cannot sit and you will understand my strategy!

Recently we trialled the new McDonald's Mobile Ordering app at our local McDonald's in Jarman Park, Hemel Hempstead which looks set to revolutionise fast food, especially for families like mine.

I'm sure I'm not the only mum to have played waitress in the car, scribbling down orders on an old petrol receipt on a road trip to speed up the rest stop. Now I can just tap each order into the app and flash the phone at the QR reader in the restaurant when I get there, and either pick our food up at the counter or sit down in the Zone I've chosen and relax while we wait for everyone's meal to be served.

So subtle changes but effective changes in the front of house section demonstrate that slowly but surely McDonald's is working towards a more streamlined, personalised, customisable experience.

The biggest changes are behind the scenes - last week I went into the kitchen at the super-modern and stylish McDonald's franchise at the Milton Heights Service Area restaurant near Didcot in Oxfordshire to hear what's new in the food preparation side of things.

Already this restaurant has changed the way food is prepared and delivered to the counter with small but significant changes introduced to allow more products to be prepared fresh for each customer.

Take the hugely successful Signature Collection for instance - each of the three burgers is made as the customer orders them resulting in a top quality product a gourmet independent burger joint would be proud of.

The plan is to roll this style of food prep out to other products  - as customers become more discerning McDonald's knows it has to keep standards up to a rising level of expectation.

Madmumof7 at McDonald's

I had a go at making my own Big Mac and discovered the "line" is already really efficient with even my clumsy hands creating a tasty, customised burger (no cheese for me!) quickly and easily.

Exploring #yournewmcdonalds- madmumof7 makes a Big Mac

Hygiene standards were exceptionally good and food freshness and quality is obviously already a high priority for the brand - I cannot wait to see how further changes will improve the McDonald's experience still further.

I made my own McDonald's Big Mac #YourNewMcdonalds

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