Great writeup! I actually think the Consortium aspect of the Claremont Colleges is really interesting and would love to know more about it. For example, how much of the per-student costs that Pomona is incurring are actually being assigned to the shared services among all the Claremont colleges? Allowing each college to specialize in the value proposition they’re actually providing to students while still relying on a centralized cost base for things that can be common (such as food, general resources, etc) is a great idea and one that ideally would be utilized more in higher ed to reduce duplicative costs.
I had no idea that Taco Bell does all of its food preparation off-site, that’s really interesting! In a lot of ways that makes them much more like a chain like Subway, which I believe also only does the “assembly and delivery” components rather than doing a lot of on-site prep. Are other major fast food chains also moving to this asset light model, or is this an opportunity that works better for Mexican food than for burgers?
I also agree that a large part of Taco Bell’s customer value proposition is on speed and price, but I think a significant portion of their business model is also based on customer loyalty around specific products that can’t be found anywhere else (like cheesy gordita crunches, crunchwrap supremes, etc). Does Taco Bell have a unique operating model for developing menu items that will keep people coming back? For example, would be really interested to know how they came up with the Doritos Locos taco!