There are various areas of your bakery business that can be automated and improved with bakery technology. Let’s explore the ways bakery technology can streamline your business process flow and operations
1. Bakery Operations
All bakery operational workflows must work closely in order to obtain the best results. These operations include production planning, demand planning and forecasting, raw materials supply, continuous improvement, financial reports, production management, and quality assurance.
Implementing technological innovations to these operations will improve productivity and enhance the quality of outputs. Some tools can help bakers streamline production and other bakery operations.
Here are some areas in bakery operations that can be automated:
• Material Handling: You can use conveyors to load or unload materials from vehicles into the production hall. Pneumatic conveyors are used for bulk handling wholesale restaurant supplies and storing raw materials.
• Premixing and Mixing: With the help of Programmable Logic Controllers, and PLC-based controlled systems, you can automate the addition of raw materials and transfer of liquids for mixing. You can also adjust the time of mixing as per dough consistency with timer software.
• Forming and Laminating: Tipping elevators can automate the process of tipping dough.
• Packaging: Automatic bagger machines and shipping label printers can streamline packaging operations. There are also several options for sustainable packaging.
2. Bakery Equipment
For large-scale bakeries that supply wholesale distribution companies, investing in high-tech bakery equipment is a great decision. Precision is key in baking. With manual baking methods, it is impossible to avoid errors.
You can improve baking results by using equipment such as spiral mixers which can help you mix large batches of dough and prevent over-mixing. Ovens with rotating racks and temperature probes can help create more consistency in baked goods.
Here are some ways technology can change the way you use bakery equipment:
• Digital Humidity Sensors: Digital sensors can help maintain the perfect humidity levels in an oven. The latest humidity sensor technology provides accurate digital readouts of ovens, dryers, cooling tunnels, and proofers.
• Wire-cut machines: Take biscuit production to new levels of speed and consistency with wire-cutting machines. Wire-cut machines come with a touchscreen interface that allows you to control the wires and create any design you want. You can even select the weight and quantity of biscuit you want.
• Hydro Bond Technology: You can make the perfect dough with hydro bond technology. This technology allows you to evenly hydrate your entire mixture without adding heat before it enters the mixer.
3. Payment Processing
Bakery technology can help you automate your payment processing operations. Bakery businesses can process payments faster and make it easier for customers to pay for baked goods.
Bakeries can accept payments online through smartphone applications, restaurant QR code scans, and other contactless payment methods. Payment processing software can be integrated with your bakery website and automate transactions.
Here are some examples of how technology is boosting payment processing in bakeries:
• Cloud-based POS System: Touchscreen POS systems allow customers to simply touch a mobile screen to process payments. Cloud-based restaurant POS systems make it easy to securely make payments, add tips, and store data.
• Subscription Billing Management Software: For bakeries that sell baking subscription boxes, it can be stressful to process recurring payments. However, with automated billing technology, you can streamline and manage recurring billing processes.
• Contactless Card Payments: You can set up mobile payments to make it easy for customers to pay with their credit cards and mobile phones.
4. Accounting and Billing Management
Automating accounting and billing management will greatly reduce accounting errors. You can simplify invoice processing, subscription billing, and reporting. Manual data entry is stressful and implementing technological processes in your billing management operations will save you time.
• Invoice Processing Automation: Using invoice management software will streamline the way you send invoices to customers. It will also make it easier to process invoices from vendors and suppliers.
• Report Automation: Technology can help bakery businesses simplify reporting and taxes. Report automation software like BlueCart can automatically generate financial reports for your business.
5. Marketing Operations
Marketing is an important part of any business and has come a long way from using traditional methods of handbills, fliers, and word-of-mouth. If you plan to grow your bakery business and expand your reach, then integrating technology into your marketing efforts is a great move.
With bakery technology, you can automate various bakery marketing activities. From building a website to get more customers to using digital banners, technology can improve the way you market and promote your bakery business.
Here are ways technology is changing bakery marketing operations:
• Online Marketing: Technology offers bakery businesses access to reach potential customers anywhere in the world through online marketing. With a simple click, you can reach customers, build brand awareness, promote your business, and increase your sales.
• Online Wholesale Directory: Directories are platforms where you can list your business online. Most directories get millions of views monthly, and with technology, you can become more visible to your niche market.
• Marketplace Online: Various marketplaces online, like BlueCart, offer bakery businesses an all-in-one eCommerce solution to manage business operations.
• Chatbots and Conversational AI: Chatbots and conversational AI can answer customers’ questions. You can implement chatbot technology to improve customer experience and support.
• Metaverse: The metaverse offers a blend of virtual reality, augmented reality, and artificial intelligence, giving users a new 3D immersive experience. Bakery businesses can use metaverse technology to create blended shopping experiences for buyers. While metaverse technology is new, it holds a lot of potential for food and restaurant businesses.
• Data Analytics: Data analytics technology can help businesses to better understand the way customers interact with their brands and products online. You can get information about purchase behaviors, favorite products, and the best ways to reach customers. This data can streamline your marketing efforts and help you set up a more targeted campaign.
6. Order Management
Order processing and order fulfillment management are important parts of your bakery business. Implementing technological solutions allows for faster order processing and tracking. Order processing technology streamlines the way customers place orders online and how bakery staff enter these orders on computer terminals.
You can also track the order, estimate the arrival time, and input the progress of the shipment on mobile devices. With order management bakery technology, you can automate the shipping and handling of subscription boxes, route orders to the warehouse automatically, and manage the delivery of the goods.
Here are some ways technology can change order management processes in bakeries:
• Mobile Ordering: You can implement mobile ordering bakery technology to enhance the ordering process for customers. Customers can simply go through your digital catalog and place their orders from their mobile devices.
• Inventory Management: Technology makes it easy to manage your inventory and supplies. Cloud-based inventory management software makes it easy to manage inventory without human input. With a digitized warehouse inventory management system, bakery businesses can minimize backorders and excess inventory.
• Warehouse Management: Technology makes it easy to store and find products within a warehouse. Warehouse management software keeps track of product storage and removal from their locations. Modern tech machines like conveyors and forklifts make it easy to move inventory.
• Product Delivery: Order management technology can send out order confirmations to customers and keep track of all products ordered and delivered. With advanced tracking technology, you can monitor orders throughout the stages of the delivery process.
• Dock-to-Stock: Modern tech makes the dock-to-stock process more efficient. You can use barcode scanning and packing slip inspection to check the successful delivery of all order items.