Work Smart: why you don’t add unnecessary steps to workflow


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Let me explain why you don’t add un-necessary steps to your workflow. Labor is time. Some thing as simple as the unnecessary task of scalding milk, “blooming” instant yeast”, or jerry rigging equipment has a real cost in labor.


Where I live the average wages are $15/hour



Let say your employee wastes 5 minutes scalding milk and blooming yeast.


Divide the number of minutes worked into 60 minutes to calculate the wage per minute.


5 ÷ 60 = 0.833 = 1.249
$1.25 per minute (rounded up)

$1.25 x 5 = $6.25

You pay $6.25 to perform a 5 minute task.

How many times in a work day are these unnecessary tasks repeated?

  • 5 batches: $31.25
  • 10 batches: $62.50
  • 15 batches: $93.75
  • 20 batches: $125.00


Labor is not free. The margin of profit is so small on baked goods the vast majority of bakers are actually selling at a loss—and don’t even realize it.
 
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Hi Norcal,

Can I just check your maths on this?

5 mins lost from an hour is 60 ÷ 5 = 12 or 1/12th of an hour. 15 ÷ 12 = 1.25

So, the loss in time to wage is $15 ÷ 12 = $1.25

or, to write it correctly, 5(15 ÷ 60) = 1.25

For a loss of $6.25, 5 employees would all have to of spent the entire time scolding the milk.

Having the employee weighing out some mise en place instead of simply staring at the milk and letting it boil over would also mitigate the loss.

In fact, if they're doing it 5 times a day, sack them and find someone with half a brain? :)
 
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Hi Norcal,

Can I just check your maths on this?

5 mins lost from an hour is 60 ÷ 5 = 12 or 1/12th of an hour. 15 ÷ 12 = 1.25

So, the loss in time to wage is $15 ÷ 12 = $1.25

or, to write it correctly, 5(15 ÷ 60) = 1.25

For a loss of $6.25, 5 employees would all have to of spent the entire time scolding the milk.

Having the employee weighing out some mise en place instead of simply staring at the milk and letting it boil over would also mitigate the loss.

In fact, if they're doing it 5 times a day, sack them and find someone with half a brain? :)

No you don’t get it.

Your baker still has to scale that milk. this time. Your baker still cannot mix that dough because the milk has to cool. So you have no dough to begin fermenting. You have no product in the making at this point. sure you can have the baker do mise en place, but that is standard work in all kitchens. It’s not a money saver. Most kitchens go over-time getting it done. It’s not unusual for a baker or chef to pull a 10 or 12 hr shift to complete everything.

Every time you add a step, you pay MORE money in labor, but you still get the same product in the end. You don’t get MORE product. And that product is out 5 minutes later.

And in the case of scalded milk—the milk doesn’t need to be scalded. Milk is pasteurized so the enzyme is killed in pasteurization. So why are you wasting your time scalding the milk? Are you spending your money on labor for work that does it need to be done? Why are you putting your product out later than it needs to be?
 

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