In any form of retail, staff are at their most valuable when serving and helping customers. Time spent doing administration costs double – once in doing the work and again in lost customer interaction. Recent developments in data automation have swept away much day to day paperwork and the best business managers are always looking for ways to reduce wasted time.
Controlling food storage temperatures to prevent the growth of harmful bacteria is hardly new to science, but it’s now easier than ever to automate storage monitoring. Not only does automation reduce business costs, but it eliminates the chance of human error and can provide warnings about equipment that has failed or is about to fail. This is mature technology and it’s never been easier to deploy.
A retail food chain has 800 stores across the UK, each offering perishable chilled and frozen goods for sale. Food is stored in presentation chillers and freezers at the front of each store and also in dry storage facilities at the rear of the building.
Following industry best practice, staff manually check and record temperatures twice a day in each storage cabinet or location throughout the store. These records are then collated and sent to head office for checking and analysis.
It was calculated this manual process costs almost £250,000 per year across the business.
Technology That Works For You
Digital data loggers automatically record temperatures, silently taking readings 24/7 and so eliminating the time taken for manual checks. A perfect example is the EasyLog EL-MOTE range of wireless loggers. These discrete devices can use your existing WiFi network to transmit their data to the Cloud, and also store readings internally if the network ever goes down. They can be battery or mains powered, and the flexible temperature probes make it easy to measure temperatures exactly where needed.
Each MOTE is simple to configure, and once connected to the EasyLog Cloud a host of powerful features is available. Data is stored securely and can be accessed from any internet-connected device. Multiple locations and users, even into several hundreds, can be managed from a single dashboard. Instant alerts are issued if a temperature threshold is breached, and these alerts can be automatically escalated to senior staff if not quickly dealt with. Reports are easy to generate and a full audit trail is automatically generated by the Cloud system.
More Than Just The Bottom Line
Once installed, a system of wireless data loggers connected to a Cloud system entirely removes the cost of manual temperature checking and compiling reports. But more than this, it also eliminates human error, staff training issues and slow response times. In fact it can also transform equipment maintenance as this can now be based on real-time data. Temperature records and the audit trail are available immediately to senior staff, while shop-based staff are left free to serve their customers.