The heart of catering operations lies in the kitchen. It is a busy place where food is stored, prepared and cooked before being served to the guests. Restaurant staff work hard, especially during peak hours, to ensure that all the guests are waited on in time.
Between buying in supplies to prepping and cooking the dishes, there are plenty of things in a kitchen that can go wrong if not managed properly. In an unfortunate instance where catering equipment breaks down, a well-run kitchen typically has a backup, but the setback can cause a ripple effect and delay the service.
Time is crucial in catering, so broken equipment needs to be repaired as soon as possible. A crisis in the kitchen shouldn’t be apparent to the customers, and the impact of a breakdown should have minimum impact on food service. Having an on-call service repair provider for catering equipment means that the chef doesn’t have to waste time looking for, and chasing-up, qualified electricians or sourcing spare parts when customers are waiting for their meals.
This gives the chef more time to focus staff efforts on adjusting operations until the breakdown is solved. This set up of an on-call repair service is also useful if the restaurant provides off-site catering for events. If equipment breaks down during catering of an external event, the staff do not have the same facilities and backup as they do in the restaurant.
Whether on or off-site catering, prevention is the best strategy, so assess where potential mishaps and emergencies could occur, and develop a risk management system.
A risk management system aims to avoid situations that can cause a negative effect on operations. Areas for assessment include the status of catering equipment, its maintenance schedule and alternatives in case of a breakdown. It should also include a formal establishment policy to ensure staff safety and efficient operations’ management.
Equipment failure happens in any sector, despite the best maintenance and management plans, Having a reliable on-call repair service is a valuable ally to help prevent a breakdown escalating into a crisis.