When you’re a part of the high-pressure hospitality industry, every aspect of the operation needs to be humming along at maximum efficiency. If production processes in a commercial kitchen aren’t running smoothly, it can have a serious impact on the success of your business. From overstocking ingredients to relying on outdated kitchen tools, there are countless ways for productivity to take a hit.
Luckily, there are also plenty of advanced kitchen equipment, tools, and methods that can help buff out any rough edges. They don’t have to be expensive or complicated to make a difference. Implementing simple yet strategic solutions can easily increase the overall effectiveness of your kitchen’s workflow.
How Can You Streamline a Commercial Kitchen?
Depending on how big your kitchen is and the way you’ve organised it, there may be a few tweaks you can make to optimise production. Sometimes this may involve focusing on the human elements of your team and other times it can involve relying on the right technology.
Use Kitchen Trolleys for Easier Transport
When you’ve got a lot of orders to fill in a short amount of time, it’s incredibly helpful to have a compact yet practical way of transporting ingredients and dishes from one side of the kitchen to the other or within your restaurant. For example, sturdy catering trolleys can help your team save a lot of time and energy as they move around faster, providing a massive boost to the overall productivity in the long run.
Most models have multiple shelves and have been designed to allow for maximum storage without taking up too much space. This allows your staff to quickly and easily group orders, organise ingredients, or move plates around without having to make multiple trips.
The shelves are usually made of stainless steel, making them easy to clean and highly durable. They can often be found in a variety of sizes, with many even having adjustable height and width to suit the unique needs of your kitchen. As your staff uses catering trolleys on a daily basis, this can be an incredibly valuable addition to your kitchen’s workflow.
One particularly handy feature is a locking system that prevents the trolley from moving when it’s not in use. This ensures your ingredients stay securely where you need them, without any potential for the trolley to roll away and cause an accident. It’s not uncommon to find a model of trolley for kitchen fitted with brakes, to ensure the safety of your staff and customers.
You can even find designs with specialised compartments to store ingredient containers and provide extra protection for delicate items like glassware. In a busy kitchen environment, these features can be incredibly helpful in optimising production.
Manage Your Space to Limit Clutter
Having a clear, organised space can help your team be more efficient when they’re producing dishes. Clutter and messiness can lead to a lot of unnecessary wasted time, which can easily be avoided by having a proper storage system.
Placing all the ingredients in labelled containers and boxes can help keep the workspace neat and ready for use. In this way, your staff will always know exactly where everything is, so they can quickly grab what they need without having to search around. This can save a lot of time when they’re busy prepping and cooking meals.
In addition, having all the containers clearly labelled can help prevent cross-contamination between food types. This is especially important in commercial kitchens where hygiene standards must be maintained at all times.
Optimise Your Team’s Workflow
When each staff member has their own roles and responsibilities, there’s a clearly defined structure in place. Everyone knows what they need to do and how they need to do it, which can ultimately minimise errors and increase efficiency.
Creating a detailed schedule for your team can help ensure that tasks are completed in a timely manner and that no one is ever overworked. It’s also crucial to create a culture of communication and collaboration so that everyone is aware of any changes or new developments and can work together to ensure that their tasks are completed quickly and accurately.
Having regular meetings with your team can also help keep everyone on the same page and ensure that everyone feels comfortable raising any questions or concerns they may have. This can create a sense of unity within the team and boost morale, resulting in a more productive and effective workplace.
Implement Automation for Inventory Tracking
Having accurate and up-to-date records of your inventory is vital for running a successful commercial kitchen. But manually tracking your stock can be incredibly time-consuming and leave room for errors. Not only that, but it can also be difficult to keep all the records updated in real-time.
By implementing automated inventory tracking, you can automate the entire process and save time, effort, and money in the long run. Automated systems can help you keep track of stock levels, monitor expiration dates, and even order new items when needed. This can help make your inventory management process smoother, more reliable, and more accurate.
Reorganise Layout for Faster Turnout Times
Optimising your kitchen layout can make a huge difference when it comes to efficiency. Everything should be easily accessible and within reach of your staff so they don’t have to waste time running around looking for items.
When there’s a smooth workflow in place, it’s much easier to get dishes out faster and with fewer mistakes. Look for ways to reduce the number of steps between food preparation and cooking, with an emphasis on creating a logical and straightforward course of action.