Case studies

Geordie Bakers

January 23, 2023

Newcastle upon Tyne-based Geordie Bakers has become one of the biggest daily bread wholesalers in the North East of England.

The company supplies retailers, food distributors, universities and local food service providers.

Long-time Customer Service Manager, Kevin Tinkler, takes us through Geordie Bakers’ journey.

He says: “I came onboard in 2014, so I’ve been here nearly eight years now. It kind of went from strength to strength, breaking into the wholesale market, bringing on the likes of small cafes, supplying bread, cakes and pies.”

Kevin explains that after realizing there was a huge gap in the UK market for their type of gourmet pies, New Zealander Jon Liddicoat and his father-in-law Mike needed a bigger premises to produce their goods.

Following a successful pitch to pub giant Weatherspoons, on the condition they worked with a larger space and the correct certifications, Jon and Mike partnered with local wholesaler Thompsons Bakery, which they took over in 2013 along with its premises. In doing so, they gained the drivers, machinery, and space their company needed. The business then began to grow substantially in daily bread products, so the attention became less about pies and more focused on bread buns.

Kevin says that over the years, they secured a large volume of business in the retail sector, they also needed to automate some of their processes.

“We were receiving loads of orders through each day which needed to be entered manually by one of our office staff. I looked at an alternative software package and had the offer of a bespoke package to be built for us; it just didn’t deliver. Then one of our staff left to go and work somewhere else; I knew Cybake would do what I needed it to and I started looking back into Cybake again.”

He adds: “I’d say the biggest difference Cybake has made, by having EDI transfer, export and import – particularly import – we can do things in five minutes now that would take someone four hours a day to do. I wouldn’t be able to keep someone in the job for very long.”

Easy to learn   

Talking of staff retention, Kevin says that Cybake makes it easier for employees to do their jobs but also for the business to cope if they leave, as the software is easy to learn.

He says: “We’re up to 35 staff now. If somebody leaves the business, which is inevitable sometimes, you then have to look at it and say: ‘OK, I’m going to have to replace somebody again without the skill and experience, and I’m going to have to train them up, how can I make that easier when that happens?’.

“The best thing about Cybake is that once you get a grip of it, it’s intuitive. And once you have a grasp of it, you can adapt it to your own needs.”

Kevin adds that as Geordie Bakers grow, the need for more staff does too.

He says: “We’ve got staff from another wholesale bakery coming soon and they don’t use anything like Cybake. So, the people we’ve got in their office, they’re really excited about coming over and actually using something that will do most of the stuff they have to do manually. I demonstrated it for them and showed them: ‘It does this, it does that, we can generate that report in a second’.”

Additionally, Kevin points outs that Geordie Bakers’ staff also enjoy the flexibility Cybake provides.

“Cybake being cloud-based means that I can log in from home to look for errors if the bakers spot something,” he says. “Also, on many occasions, staff members have worked from home with ease.”

Categories: Case Study
Tags: EDI food manufacturing Geordie Bakers Newcastle production United Kingdom Wholesale
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Chris James is a communications specialist for Cybake and Cybake USA.

Company profile

We started creating ERP-class software solutions for the baking industry in 1998.

Since then, we’ve gained a reputation for friendly and reliable customer support, a deep understanding of retail and wholesale bakery, and for our expertise in cutting-edge systems and technology.

Now, bakers of all types and sizes rely on Cybake® bakery software to control their businesses, cut admin, improve efficiency and increase sales.