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Getting organised in busy periods!

Every year, new year celebrations as well as religious or national holidays are great opportunities for your business. But they can also be stressful due to a heavy workload falling within a short timeframe. However, the challenges of these busy periods can generally be overcome if you organise yourself well in advance. For this reason, you must always remember to THINK AHEAD!

Reward customers who make your life easier!

In order to predict production volumes there is nothing better than orders placed well in advance. But what used to be a rule has now become the exception and many customers wait until the last minute to reserve their special breads, pastries or chocolates!

In order to get customers to place their orders as far in advance as possible, offer a discount (10% for example) to all those who book at least 15 days before the event.

 

Make sure you have a stock of “ready to serve” products or products with a very short preparation time!

Use off-peak periods before the special day to prepare batches of your breads.  Simply freeze your products in a freezer, cold room or deep-freezing tunnel then store them in a  negative cold room until the festive period. They should then be defrosted in a cold room or refrigerator (positive cold) for 24 hours before eating.

At certain times of year, various raw materials are on special offer. They can be purchased at a reduced price, frozen immediately   and kept at a negative cold temperature until use.

 

Negative cold + positive cold

The purchase of negative cold (-18°C) storage units is essential. You will need a deep-freezing cell (-40°C) to preserve the products (textures, aromas, enzymatic and bacterial spoilage) and to avoid the loss of freshness linked to thawing (softening, sagging, phase separation). Positive cold units can be used for storing chocolates (+14 °C) and semi-finished or finished pastries (+2 °C). Temperature and humidity controlled storage units are specially designed for the defrosting and pre-sale conservation of finished pastries.

 

Plan your tasks!

Remember to order your supplies (boxes, bags, beans…) and non-perishable raw materials (couverture chocolate, flavourings, UHT milk and creams, frozen fruit purées…) at least two months before the event.

Soon after this, start to prepare the bases and finished/semi-finished products that keep well in negative cold. One month before the event move on to bases and finished/semi-finished products with a more delicate flavour or texture. This means that many products will be in stock before the busy period. You can then concentrate on buying and preparing fresh ingredients and making bases that do not freeze but refrigerate well. You will also be able to focus on the finishing touches.

 

Think about “extra help”!

On the big day, and during the period leading up to it, customers must have a relaxing experience. Don’t let yourself become overwhelmed! Three months in advance think about recruiting extra staff, trainees or temps!

 

Visual recap:

The golden rules for organisation during busy periods:

  • Take your customers’ orders well in advance
  • Use deep-freezing to stock a large volume of products
  • Plan your tasks in advance (orders, preparation of bases and finished products…)
  • Recruit backup: extras, trainees or temps

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