Getting the right equipment for your restaurant can be challenging at times, especially if you need to work with multiple suppliers to get all the many products and fittings you need to begin operations. To save time and a lot of effort, many restaurants make it a point to get all their equipment from a single supplier.

Naturally choosing the right supplier in this situation becomes critical since you need to be able to depend on them. The supplier that you choose has to be absolutely trustworthy and provide quality equipment along with post sales support, installation, assistance with maintenance and a host of other functions.

Some key factors to consider while identifying the right supplier are:

Ability to procure the equipment you need

Getting high quality and reliable equipment should take priority over cost, at least within reason. Reliable equipment will last longer as it will not get wear out easily. Equipment that is well built can be used for years without incurring severe wear and tear, provided that it is maintained adequately. Moreover, a good supplier will offer a full range of new and used products that serve all your restaurant needs.

Delivers Reliably and On Time

A good restaurant equipment supplier can get you the equipment you want; a great supplier delivers it on time as well. When you’re starting a restaurant, you’re likely working on a tight schedule, you can have the premises ready with staff hired and not be able to offer any food service because the top of the line ovens you ordered have been delayed a month…or two. Make sure your supplier of choice has a proven track record of delivering on an agreed timetable, small delays are to be expected of course, but an extended history of delays is a definite red flag.

Ability to assist with installation

The best suppliers don’t just offer equipment; they offer installation services as well. Some suppliers have deals on including installation while others offer it for free with large orders. Installation makes the entire process streamlined and is a useful benefit for restaurant owners.

Maintenance and Repair services

Your commercial equipment supplier should offer a warranty along with a regular maintenance package. The number of maintenance sessions offered could vary depending on the supplier or the package chosen. Maintenance is a key factor in a commercial kitchen, especially for essential equipment used for crucial functions like storing and cooking. Once there is damage, the supplier needs to be notified immediately to send repairmen quickly and make sure that the issue is resolved satisfactorily.

Responsive and Helpful Customer Service

Suppliers must be able to provide reasonable and immediate customer service to resolve issues concerning their products. Customer service should be provided over the phone or through email that allows for customers to address their grievances. Simple queries or sometimes complicated questions can usually be resolved over phone, depending on the topic, and a knowledgeable supplier will have experienced personnel making sure that all of the customer’s questions are answered fully.

Attractive financing options

Smaller restaurants that can’t buy all their equipment and appliances at one go can often rely on suppliers offering various financing options. This allows them to buy the equipment they need to get off the ground and pay off the capital costs in stages and ensures that the restaurant can function smoothly. Depending on your credit rating, you may be able to get a financing deal for your equipment from the supplier that is significantly better than approaching a bank or credit cooperative to outfit your new restaurant.

When choosing a restaurant equipment supplier always look at their credentials and previous experience as it will reveal a lot about their workmanship and quality of products. There are many other factors that one might consider before choosing a supplier, but by making sure your supplier is able to measure up to your key requirements beforehand you are in a position to make a well-informed decision on who you want to work with.