When buying new catering equipment, it is a good idea to think about a maintenance contract to go with it.
Manufacturer Olympic reports that caterers are increasingly turning to these contracts as they discover the cost-saving benefits of preventive maintenance.
It points out, however, that choosing the right level of maintenance is not always easy. A standard contract may not meet your demands, while a tailor-made package can be complicated.
"Service and maintenance is all about preventing breakdown and saving the caterer money," said Olympic's Ken Ford. "That's why there has been such a rapid growth in the service industry - it adds to profits.
"Every piece of kit can be covered, from the microwave to the range and the food processor to the refrigerator.
"Caterers are wary of servicing costs, though, so we have designed a lower cost agreement for when the equipment is in good order and unlikely to break down, along with two other contracts that offer greater security."
Brought together under the brand Select 3, Olympic's contracts are:
- A purely preventive maintenance contract with an agreed number of site visits a year. A full emergency service is available when something goes wrong, but the customer has to pay extra for the work and any spare parts required.
- The same as above, but covering emergency calls including labour and travelling costs.
- Also covers the cost of spare parts.
Each individual piece of equipment under a maintenance contract will have a checklist of jobs for visiting engineers to carry out.