Labl.it, a thriving company in the hospitality industry, has achieved remarkable success by working with Datacake, the leading IoT data monitoring and automation platform. With a focus on improving operational efficiency, ensuring compliance and delivering exceptional customer service, the company plans to integrate temperature monitoring into its existing food labelling hardware.
Maintaining food safety is among the most important things a food business operator must do. To ensure that businesses comply with food hygiene legislation, local authority enforcement officers, known as Environmental Health Officers (EHOs), carry out routine unannounced food hygiene inspections. Labl.it, a company specialising in catering services, has risen to this challenge by inventing a handheld label printer that provides a safer and quicker way of managing food labels. The labels, which ensure full EHO compliance, include a clear and bold expiry date for easy identification in the kitchen, as well as additional information such as allergen content and storage requirements. Their innovative product gives the kitchen team more time to focus on creating great food, rather than tedious administrative tasks.
As Labl.it’s reputation grew, customers began to ask for automated temperature monitoring. At the time, however, Labl.it did not yet have a solution for such monitoring. They were aware that while there were several competitors in the market for remote temperature monitoring in restaurants, their unique selling point (USP) was the integration of the monitoring capabilities into the equipment they already provided. Recognising the potential for expansion and the opportunity to better serve their customers, Labl.it set out to develop a solution that could be implemented quickly and easily. It was during this search that they discovered Datacake.
I am not a software engineer, so we were delighted to find Datacake ... that allows us to focus on improving features rather than writing code.
Sean Larsen, Co-Founder and CTO of Labl.it
Labl.it’s success story continued as they experienced significant growth in their customer base. One of their clients, a hotel with multiple kitchens, was faced with the daunting task of manually recording temperature data from 21 refrigerators. Labl.it’s solution offered a critical advantage, providing real-time temperature monitoring and alerts for out-of-range readings. This feature proved invaluable in preventing food spoilage and potential financial loss to their customers.
They chose the small, rugged and easily configurable Sentrius RS186 LoRa-enabled temperature and humidity sensor from Laird. It runs for years on the same set of replaceable AA batteries, which means minimal maintenance.
Labl.it also recognised the value of Datacake’s reporting capabilities, particularly the new rule engine, SMS alerts and white label option. These features became indispensable tools for their operations, allowing them to effectively customise and automate processes. The partnership between Labl.it and Datacake flourished as both parties benefited from each other’s expertise. During the implementation process, Labl.it encountered some minor hurdles, including a variant of a sensor that required a custom payload decoder. However, with the help of Datacake’s support team, these challenges were overcome and Labl.it was very impressed with Datacake’s capabilities.
The impact of Labl.it’s integration with Datacake went beyond convenience. They were able to mitigate the risks associated with manual temperature monitoring, such as incomplete data or human error. Labl.it’s customers, aware of the potential consequences of non-compliance, eagerly embraced the solution as a means of eliminating procedural risk. The ability to maintain a consistently high standard of food safety has impressed inspectors and enhanced Labl.it’s reputation in the industry.
Labl.it’s integration with Datacake resulted in significant savings in labour costs and reduced food spoilage losses. The value of ensuring the safety of a single banquet preparation far exceeded the cost of Labl.it’s monthly subscription to Datacake’s services, making the system essentially self-sustaining and financially beneficial.
Sean recalled how one of his colleagues on Christmas Eve had prepared a large banquet for the following day, and the entire preparation was lost due to a malfunction in the refrigeration system. If their monitoring system had already been in place, a simple notification would have prevented a major disaster. This friend is now also a customer.
As Labl.it continued to grow its business, with around 100 sign-ups per month, it also partnered with two companies specialising in kitchen checklist services. While these companies focused on checklists and health and safety checks, they lacked the hardware aspect of temperature monitoring. Labl.it successfully integrated Datacake with these partners’ services, allowing them to offer comprehensive solutions that included both checklist management and temperature monitoring.
Labl.it’s future plans include further integration with their handheld printers, enabling seamless communication and data synchronisation between the labelling system and temperature monitoring devices. This integration will provide users with comprehensive information about their food inventory, expiry dates, storage locations and corresponding temperatures. By continuously innovating and listening to customer needs, Labl.it aims to consolidate its position as a leader in the hospitality industry.
Labl.it’s success story is a testament to the transformative power of integrating Datacake’s IoT sensor monitoring and automation capabilities with their existing hardware. With a focus on improving operational efficiency, ensuring compliance and delivering exceptional customer service, Labl.it has become a pioneer in the hospitality industry, setting new standards for excellence.