Why Employee Training is the First Line of Defense for Food Safety and Energy Reduction

In the food retail industry, employee productivity, performance, and happiness are all key factors in the overall success of an organization. But the goals tied to each can’t be met overnight. Instead, it takes a true commitment to employee training to get there.

In recent posts, we’ve talked about the consequences of The Great Resignation and subsequent strategies for increasing employee retention. Automating workflow management and maintaining comfortable working conditions are just some of the tactics a business can implement to keep employees sticking around, but this requires more than a commitment to upgrades powered by IoT alone. Employee education and training are the real first line of defense for both food safety and energy reduction.

Why Dedicated Employee Training Sometimes Gets Forgotten

Since food retail is an industry often synonymous with high turnover, it can be tempting to view employees as dispensable. Unfortunately, sometimes food service workers don’t get the training and support they need, which in turn leads to cognitive overload and burnout.

While reducing labor challenges can be achieved through automation, facility managers must also invest in employee training. Knowing how to operate and leverage connected equipment solutions like OpenKitchen or SiteSage is crucial to enhancing operational efficiencies and improving food and facility safety.

The Benefits of Connected Equipment Paired With Proper Employee Training

There are a number of benefits that come along with providing proper employee training for connected equipment. For example, when employees have greater visibility over things like refrigeration units, HVAC systems, lighting, and kitchen equipment, the team can shift from reactive to proactive equipment maintenance. A broader facility overview, paired with key insights into critical equipment, also enables employees to spot equipment issues in real-time so repairs can be made before catastrophic failures occur.

Educating teams on the importance of temperature monitoring, food preservation, and task management is an essential first step. However, providing the training to solve these issues by harnessing the power of connected equipment (rather than cumbersome paper forms and documentation that can lead to pencil whipping) is even more crucial. With a combination of connected equipment and the proper employee training, facility managers can:

1. Instill confidence and a sense of purpose

Employees want—actually, employees need—a sense of purpose in the workplace. Mundane, repetitive tasks don’t provide this feeling but instead, lead to burnout. Training employees on the why and how behind automating tasks makes work processes easier and eliminates redundant chores. As a result, stress is reduced, employees are happier, and productivity increases.

2. Increase employee retention

Solutions like Open Kitchen and SiteSage can provide alerts, automated checklists, reporting, and more. This helps employees remember proper procedures, reduces stress, and improves operational efficiency. This can ultimately increase in employee retention.

3. Improve food safety and site health

When employees know how to harness the power of connected equipment correctly, it creates a positive impact on food safety and site health. In addition, employees learn how to shift from reactive to proactive maintenance in order to eliminate food shrinkage, unexpected downtime, and a list of other problems.

4. Support compliance

Not only does proper training help maintain consistency across different food retail locations, but it also increases compliance. With automated reporting and checklists, employees can feel confident they are meeting their goals and responsibilities.

Conclusion

While IoT technology is key to improving food safety and reducing energy consumption, knowledgeable employees are also an important part of the equation. To be successful, proper training is crucial in order for an organization to reap the benefits of connected equipment. With the right training, it is possible to use automation and analytics to enhance equipment performance, streamline operations, save money, and lessen the burden on employees.

Interested in learning more about the ways connected equipment, paired with proper employee training, can help your organization’s bottom line? A member of our team is waiting to start the conversation.

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