Quality, Service and Passion
Bakers Delight is an iconic, Australian-owned bakery franchise chain. In operation since 1980, the company runs currently over 700 bakeries across 3 different countries, and shares in the top 13% of the bread market. Directly and indirectly employing over 15 000 people, and serving over 2.5 million customers per week, Bakers Delight holds the position of the Australia’s most successful bakery franchise.
Taking pride in their unique service and product offering, Bakers Delight makes all of their products from scratch every day, using real, fresh ingredients. “We are obviously really fortunate in the fact that bread is such a staple product,” says Gabby Kelly, General Manager of Operations, “and we continue to see changes in trends with growth and demand for healthy products and healthy breads. We are very fortunate that we’re in an industry that stands up very well in good times as well as tough times.”
Bakers Delight strives to create opportunities for aspiring franchisees, offering multiple entry points within the business through both internal and external platforms. The company seeks primarily to foster the talent already within its network, and provides a number of training programs structured and designed around that group to ensure that they’re developed accordingly, and have everything available for them to be able to become a successful business owners and operators. “A big focus for us is ensuring that we future proof our business,” Kelly says, “and we certainly recognise the opportunities that we already have within our existing network, and we ensure that we continue to focus heavily in that particular area.”
A significant point of difference between Bakers Delight and its counterparts within the industry lies in the strong, shared values of the staff, From the employees behind the counters through to the Chief Executive Officers, the strong, shared values of the Bakers Delight team represent a significant point of difference between the company and its counterparts within the industry. “Everything we do is about delighting the customer through both our product and their experience in our bakery, and that is something that we’ve held dear for 34 years,” says Gabby. “We’ve seen a lot of success through that model and it will remain very much a part of our future planning.”
The relationship between Bakers Delight and both local and national community is of critical importance to the business. Through their long history of work alongside the Breast Cancer Network throughout Australia, as well as their support of numerous localized sponsorships, Bakers Delight ensures that their customers are a part of their strategy in terms of strengthening communities and building businesses. “Our uniqueness very much sits around a triple-bottom-lined strategy so to speak,” Kelly says, “and that is something that Bakers Delight has done exceptionally well over the years.”
One of the highest priorities for Bakers Delight is the internal and external future proofing of the business. By making only the best training and recruiting platforms available, the most desirable candidates are attracted, and the company is able to ensure their future success through the provision of quality training and service. Bakers Delight offers aspiring franchise owners a wide variety of programs or entry points into the business, either through external channels or through their internal ”Manage-To-Own” and “Fresh Franchisee” programs. A strong structure of learning and development programs are also available to all employees in the network. Pivotal to Bakers Delight is their growth strategy; ensuring the employment of the best possible operational and support teams within the business to guide, direct, and drive their franchisees to continue to grow. Over the past 2 years, the company also has invested heavily in the Fast Track Area Management program, designed provide long-term, hands-on operational training, as well as business acumen for future area mangers.
Strategic working relationships between Bakers Delight and their suppliers allow for greater innovation, efficiency, and effectiveness throughout the company structure. “To remain current and relevant, I think it’s an extremely important area of the business, and I think that that’s something that Bakers Delight has been particularly successful with over the last 34 years,” says Gabby. Bakers Delight’s alignment with experts in various fields of study ensures that they are able to tap into external talent, providing them with updates on all topics, from technology platforms to new lines of ingredients. “It has been through that continual evolution of relationship building and innovation that we have remained at the top of our game.”
In addition to continuously maintaining a vibrant and relevant business presence, one of the greatest challenges that Bakers Delight faces from the perspective of franchising structure is the attraction of strong external candidates to the company network. “I think that that is a shared challenge across all franchising businesses,” Gabby says, “I would say that it is first and foremost at the top of the list.”
Gabby Kelly’s career with Bakers Delight began with a part-time Sales Assistant position in 1993 whilst completing high school. She joined the corporate team in 2000, operating as a Bakery Manager for a Company Owned Bakery. Gabby quickly progressed to take on the role of Area Manager for Company Owned Bakeries, and Group Development Manager soon after, overseeing the Franchise Recruitment and Training departments. In 2012, she was promoted to General Manager of Company Growth, and further promoted a year later to her current role as General Manager of Operations. “I think one of the really rewarding aspects for me, and certainly what’s kept me motivated and challenged, has been the ability to create future developing opportunities for people,” she says. “The greatest thing that I pride myself upon is that, directly and indirectly, Bakers Delight provides opportunities for over 15,000 people, from shop staff right through to business ownership, and I think that’s very inspiring and aspirational and it’s certainly what kept me employed and happy at Bakers Delight for a long period of time.”