The recent worker shortage has taken manufacturers across all sectors by surprise, but its impact on bakeries is especially pronounced. Fortunately, emergent technologies and automated bakery equipment have allowed businesses to achieve more with less. In addition, the latest industrial automation solutions for food and beverage producers have enabled bakeries of all sizes to improve product consistency by enhancing their baking techniques.
New automated solutions and machinery for the bakery industry let you replace outmoded ovens that are overly dependent on manual operations, such as transferring pans from higher to lower racks. These resource and labor-intensive processes delay baking times and can impact the quality of your breads, cakes, and snacks. Recent technology, however, allows you to improve your outcomes by leveraging ovens with automated rotating racks and temperature probes.
In this article, we’ll explore how similar new baking technologies can help your business thrive and achieve better results while increasing your operational efficiency with fewer resources.
Automating lowers your operating costs
When you invest in migrating your processes into a new system you should expect a considerable financial benefit, and automating your bakery is surely no exception. Among the first benefits you’ll realize after implementing industrial automation solutions and software controls is reduced labor overhead.
Many bakeries aren’t in a position to eliminate staff, and they struggling to add human resources. Automated bakery equipment and information controls allow you to increase your throughput without onboarding more employees that require expensive training and benefits. While your labor costs may not necessarily change, automation lets you decrease the cost to produce each unit.
The efficiency gains you realize after automating allow you to increase your throughput exponentially without adding to your existing labor force. Emergent technologies are highly effective at reducing prep and cleanup times at your manufacturing plant. For example, just now, many bakeries are taking advantage of silicon bakeware that allows them to freeze dough before placing it directly into the oven once as goes onto the line.
Better sales and analytics
It doesn’t matter how you approach order processing and sales management. Automation will help. You might be implementing an internal sales database or rolling out an order creation app and website analytics. Regardless, the latest tech for bakeries will help you better facilitate your sales and order placement processes.
Above all, business benefit from the increased visibility into their operations, including enhanced inventory traceability. The ability to track your inventory from the time it leaves your shipping dock to retail shelves helps eliminate delivery errors that lead to lost products while making it easier to pinpoint products in real-time that could be subject to recall.
Better use of your labor force and improved employee satisfaction
Automating gives your manual operators a chance to improve their skills and bring them into the modern era. New software controls and solutions from EZSoft and similar automation service providers are shifting the way bakeries approach their business. Sever-based technology that helps bakeries track and execute equipment maintenance will soon be replaced by Internet of Things (IoT) devices that digitize and computerize these processes.
In comparison to existing technologies, these emergent cloud-based can provide feedback on oven temperatures in live-time, allowing you to reallocate staff and resources to more revenue-generating activities.
Faster problem solving and decision making
The COVID-19 pandemic took a significant toll on many bakery operations, particularly those in the retail sector who found difficulty pivoting and discovering new solutions in response to the global health crisis. While some retailers were thriving, making more online sales, others discovered themselves ill-prepared to make this transition in such a short time.
Automation tools for bakeries can help accelerate online sales and make production distribution easier and more efficient. If businesses want to implement home delivery solutions to expand their customer base, there are several automated software applications that can help these business shift gears and adopt processes and solutions like online ordering and curbside pickup quickly without interrupting their operations in any meaningful way.
New and improved ingredients
Automation and new technologies have surprisingly impacted the types of ingredients finding their way into baked goods. Gluten-free products have become hugely popular over the last several years, and many bakeries have leveraged the latest industrial automation solutions to test and experiment with new products to meet customer demand.
Alternative flours and rice-based gluten-free breads are easier to produce since the most recent automated baking products and software solutions are designed to handle these items. Some operations may find it difficult to bake these products and deliver consistent outcomes with the assistance of automated tools Furthermore, as of 2018, trans fats have been banned by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Since bakers have been turning to automation to help facilitate the production of alternative products without sacrificing efficiency.
Enhanced quality control
We’ve touched on product consistency a bit, but quality control goes a long way in preserving both food safety and your brand’s hard-earned reputation. Automated software controls and manufacturing execution systems allow bakeries to identify and pinpoint spoiled or recalled products at any point in the supply chain in real-time.
The last thing you want as a food and beverage manufacturer is to discover products subject to recall have found their way onto retailer shelves and into the hands of customers, potentially making them sick. The regulatory, reputational, and legal consequences after something like this occurring are significant and can have a lasting impact on your bottom line. If loyal customers lose confidence in your brand, their opinion may be irreversible, and they might never return.
Partnering with EZSoft, the food and beverage automation experts
If you’ve been checking around recently, asking where to find proven industrial automation companies near me, consider EZSoft, a leading full-service integrator of process control systems and automation software provider in Malvern, PA.
To connect with one of your bakery specialists, complete our online request for contact form. Or, to get more information on pricing call (484) 568-5040 now.