The Transformation of the Coffee Vending Machine in the Tampa and Orlando Area

2012′s Top 5 Amazing Pairings (according to this writer):

  1. Peanut butter and chocolate
  2. Sunday afternoons and naps
  3. Journey and karaoke night
  4. Popcorn and Junior Mints
  5. Vending machines and coffee

In past years #5 might not have made the cut but in recent years coffee connoisseurs have gone to great lengths to overcome the negative stigmas associated with vending coffee and in 2012 should consider their efforts a success.

In 1960 the first vending coffee was introduced one freeze dried cup at a time to the market. It looked  more like muddy water than coffee and after being tasted left its consumer wishing it was muddy water.

Although less than desirable it did suit a need, swing shifts and hospitals were grateful, to an extent, everywhere as coffee was now available at all hours.

At this time a popular company was also marketing its instant coffee as a key to a happy marriage. A wife was only as good as her coffee and with instant coffee she was able to make the perfect cup each time.

In 2012 both men and women need their coffee at the workplace and at home. And just as gender roles have progressed so have the qualifications for a good cup of coffee. Freeze dried just won’t do.

In 1971 Starbucks opened its first store. And in recent years, along with other key roasters and manufacturers, has transformed the role of coffee in America, including vending machines.

Today’s vending machines still make “instant” cups of coffee in that you can have a cup in 30 seconds or less. But now vending machines in the Tampa and Orlando area are equipped to grind beans fresh for each cup “ordered.” Consumers can now pick their brew strength (mud not an option) and have more options than simply powdered cream and sugar including espressos, lattes, cappuccinos, etc. In some machines fresh cream is even offered in place of powder.

In addition to modern machinery Tampa and Orlando vending companies are also being more selective in the beans they choose. It is more common than ever to see a machine labeled with a popular roasters name including Seattle’s Best (owned by Starbucks), Tully’s and Wolfgang Puck.

If you have been weary of placing a coffee machine at your facility because of past stigmas, give them another try. The combination of premium beans and intricate equipment may make you feel like there is a barista hidden inside.

However, a machine is only as good as it’s Tampa and Orlando vendor allows it to be.

Intricate equipment can be complicated and requires calibration knowledge. The combination of ground beans, water, cream and sugar can get messy. Make sure you pair yourself with a Florida vendor in the Tampa and Orlando area who knows the equipment and will take the time to maintain it properly. Don’t be afraid to question their knowledge or ask for a cleaning schedule.

First impressions are hard to overcome but vending coffee has truly changed its character. It still might not make your top 5 list but its got a good chance at top 10.

Is Your Tampa and Orlando Vending Service Fully Insured?

Riddle: What do your car, house and vendor have in common?

Answer: They should all be insured.

Having vending service in the Tampa and Orlando area can be a great convenience to you and your employees when things go right; the machines are well stocked and working correctly. But what happens when things don’t go right: a vending machine shuts down and leaks on your linoleum, the install crew applies a little too much force and now there is a hole in your door or the person who restocks your vending machines gets injured after slipping on someone’s spilled soda in the break room?

Although these things happen rarely, they do happen.  Vending machines break and people make mistakes and that’s why it’s important to make sure you choose a Tampa and Orlando vending provider who is prepared for the day that things don’t go as planned.

When driving Tampa and Orlando drives normally keep a certificate of insurance in the car. Very rarely do you need to touch that certificate unless you are moving it out of the way to grab your phone charger or a favorite CD but in the off chance that you do need it, it’s there.

To some extent you put trust in all other drivers that they have done the same, so that if your paths ever collide, as you are reaching into your glove box they are too. If you’ve ever found yourself in the situation where you are the only one reaching, you know the sinking feeling of the entire responsibility landing on your shoulders and all the money leaving your bank account.

Unfortunately you can’t control who you meet on the road but you can control who you allow in your building. Your company is properly insured and therefore you should not expect less of your Tampa and Orlando vendor.

In the off chance that something does go wrong, make sure you have paired yourself with a vendor who will be reaching for their piece of paper, who takes responsibility for their accidents.

Your Tampa and Orlando Vending Company should have:

  • Workman’s Comp
  • Auto Insurance
  • Building Insurance (This type of insurance should include a “business package” that covers your vendor’s facility as well as an umbrella coverage for damage done where machines are placed. In many cases your vendor should be able to supply you with a copy of this certificate specifying that you are included under the umbrella).

Ask Your Orlando Vending Service If They Use Advanced Technology!

In the vending industry there are many advances that have been made in technology. You  can purchase a variety of products from a vending machine: sodas, snacks, fresh food, deep dish pizza, medicine, makeup, magazines, toilet paper, lobsters, bikes, etc.

Since there are many advantages to having modern technology with your vending service, you need to be aware of what kind of vending company to choose that is best for your business. From increased efficiencies in service to fresher products – to helping the environment with green initiatives to having more effective monthly reporting – all of these can play a highly beneficial role when selecting the right vending company.

To make life more convenient for you and your employees/patrons it is important to pair yourself with the right Orlando vendor who has embraced some if not all of the technologies listed below.

Guaranteed Product Delivery Systems – Infrared technology ensures that if a product is not vended you receive your money back, which equals happier employees and less angry messages to you as the middleman.

Wireless Technology – Wireless technology allows your Orlando vendor to know exactly what has sold in your vending machine and how much money is in the machine. How does this benefit you? It ensures that the product delivered is based on what you like, which in turn means no outdated products. Data as accurate as this also equates to very detailed commission reports.                                                                                                               

Debit/Credit Card Readers – Today’s society has a lot more payment options than ever before. In fact many employees may not even carry cash. Talk to your local Orlando vendor to see what options they offer in cashless vending and how these options can meet a growing need for your facility.

Bill Recyclers – Allow you to pay in larger bill denominations ($5, $10, even $20 bills) while receiving change in the same type of currency. For example, you want a bag of M&Ms but only have a $5 bill on you. Where before you might have turned away because you didn’t want a pocket full of nickels and dimes now machines can be equipped to give you your change in paper currency. It’s that easy!

With that said has your Orlando vending company made many advances with new technologies that have helped you run your business more efficiently with your time, money and overall employee morale?  If not call Snack Time Vending for a FREE Vending consultation at 407.332.9299.


How do you know if your Orlando vendor is organized?

All over the web you can find research and opinions on the reasons why being organized can positively affect your life, home and business. These articles include everything from habits of organized people, tips on how-to be organized and the benefits thereof. They suggest that organized people: stick with what works, ask for help and foresee and avoid problems.

And as a result vending companies that are more organized are more productive, better focused on goals and achieving them in a more economical and timely manner with less stress.

When choosing a vending company in Orlando you want to pick one that is operated by organized people. Because if the things listed above are true of the people running the company they’ll be true of the company itself.

An organized vendor will use the resources they have, schedule their routes to be as effective as possible, arrive as scheduled, provide you with fresh product, keep their machines and vehicles clean and be up to date with the latest the vending world has to offer both in product and technology.

How do you know if your Orlando vendor is organized?

Ask to see their warehouse. It may take an hour of your day but it could save you the hours of frustration that come with pairing yourself to the wrong company.

During your visit here are some key things to look for: Is food elevated off the ground? All food should be on shelves or pallets, never directly on the warehouse floor. Do food and beverages have designated sections? Within those sections are products organized (chips with chips, all 12oz sodas with 12oz sodas and organized by bottler, etc.)?

A good way to test the organization process is to see if the vendor can quickly and efficiently find a particular product. Not sure what to ask for? Ask for your favorite snack.

What does the mechanic’s “shop” look like? Although not as important as the care of your food and beverages a mechanics shop will tell you a lot about the response time you’ll get to service calls. A mechanic can’t fix your machine if he can’t find the parts to do so. Lost parts equal lost time and higher waste which eventually result in higher cost.

Look for the presence of unwanted creatures (rats, roaches, etc.) Ask what measures they take to keep rodents and bugs out of their facility.

Are personal pets on the property? Although pets can improve workplace environment it is important that they never compromise the sanitation of your vendor’s warehouse.

When you pair yourself with an organized Orlando vendor you pair yourself with a company who values your health, time and money. By having their “home” in order they are able to address your needs quickly because they have already taken care of their own.


The Importance of Water Filtration Service in Central Florida

When choosing a vending service in Central Florida for your break room think about all the services that they can potentially provide for you before making a final decision.  Do they offer office coffee service? Do they offer fresh and/or frozen food?

Will they provide a wide variety of products including a healthy selection if requested? Lastly, do they have available a water filtration service? You don’t want to be outsourcing vending, office coffee and water service to three different companies.  The convenience of having one company to service all areas of your break room is the direction to go.

You will be developing a relationship with their route team as they provide you with a variety of services. If there are any questions that develop, communicating with one company is much easier than having many contacts for all inquiries.  It is that simple.

Having a water filtration service is usually a primary request in the work place, therefore when choosing a water filtration system, you need to be aware of the options that can be available. The most popular option among businesses is the bottle less system.  With the bottle less system, its filtration devices features the most advanced filtering and UV systems available and it delivers safe, crisp-tasting hot and cold water on demand, at the push of a button. This unit needs a simple water line installed, which can easily be completed on installation.

Many vending companies can offer water by the case for your break room or front office. No need to go to the local store to pick up water for your staff. It is all about the vending company providing many options for your convenience.

Having a break room that is kept clean and continually serviced with snacks, food, hot and cold beverages including an office coffee service and water filtration service will boost the morale of all your employees. Throughout Central Florida,  Snack Time Vending can offer you a complete vending service to include all of your break room needs.


How to Choose a Great Vending Service in Orlando

How do you know what is considered a great vending company in Orlando?  Will they deliver what they promise?  What types of questions should I ask a company who provides vending and office coffee service before making a decision?  What are some key points that I should be aware of when looking for a full service vending company?  If you have asked these questions, then you are not alone.  Most companies look for a vending service that will meet the needs and desires of their employees but just do not know what questions to ask when searching for the right vending provider.  Well, here is a list of some of the most important questions when searching for the right vending and office coffee provider for your business.  You may even consider them “valuable tips” that could potentially relieve you from a disastrous outcome.

First and for most you need to make sure that the vending company is fully licensed and insured.  If one of your employees happens to get sick from eating a product out of a fresh food vending machine, you want to make sure that the vending company has liability insurance for potential law suits.  Along this line you may want to consider asking if the vending company offers workers compensation for its route drivers.  If one of their employees gets hurt in your state of business, you don’t want to be liable or responsible for injury compensation.

Another important question you should ask when interviewing a vending company is how long they have been in business. Is their business a one-person operation working part time or is their vending business a full-time company dependent on its customer base?  Do you really want a vending company servicing your office with a variety of snacks and beverages who works out of his or her garage at their state of residence? This actually leads to a third question to ask.  How is the product being handled and how long is the product stored before it is delivered to their customers?  Is it a garage, a truck or a clean warehouse and are you able to visit the vending company’s facility?

Service is always a great topic for asking questions.  How long will a machine be out of service if there is a problem…hours, days or weeks and does the vending company have their own vending machine mechanic? Having a vending provider who establishes servicing standards for their route drivers and acquires well-trained technicians is crucial if a problem ever arises with your vending machine.  I’m sure you will have disgruntle employees if they are not able to get their mid morning snack like a granola bar or yogurt or they may have to run to the nearest Starbucks because the coffee vending machine is out of service for days at a time.

Another important question that is often missed when interviewing a vending company is what technologies do they have in-place for improving customer service?  Do their vending machines accept credit cards and are their vending machines equipped with new Guaranteed Product Delivery Systems that guarantee the product or your money back? If you are not aware of what Guaranteed Product Delivery Systems is, it is an infrared technology which detects any unsuccessful vend cycle, guaranteeing that your employees either receives their product, or gets their money back. This new technology greatly reduces the chance that your employees will lose their money or not get the item they have selected.  This will definitely eliminate frustrated employees and management having to worry about reimbursing employees for lost money.

Also, vending companies that have a tracking system in place to keep account of slower moving products and potentially out dated items is very cost effective and an efficient way of doing business. Asking how often their route drivers rotate product selections is a great question and can eliminate internal stress between the management team of the office and the employees.

Safety is also an over looked factor when searching for the right vending and office coffee provider.  Have criminal background checks been cleared on the route drivers and technicians entering your facility? Are the employees required to wear photo identification and professional uniforms?  You don’t want to be liable for inappropriate actions at your place of business when precautionary steps could have been taken to avoid such actions. And last but not least when choosing the right vending company for your line of business, make sure to request for at least five business references that they are currently using as their customers.  Hopefully by asking these questions when interviewing a potential vending service it will eliminate any confusion and frustration when trying to find the very best vending and office coffee provider for your business in Orlando.