Are you looking for a career as a baker? Not sure how much does it pay?
Well, don’t worry because a lot of people often ask this question only a few know the right answer to it. Recently, a lot of people have started looking into baking as a career as it offers the users a chance to innovate and use creative techniques to make bread and sweets. Baking is a fusion of food and science and requires a complete understanding of the various techniques in order to get the best results. To bake something, the food needs to be cooked in dry heat using hot ashes or ovens. However, is there any scope for bakers in the market?
Well, yes! Of course, there is. With the increase in the demand for cakes and desserts as more and more people use it to celebrate different occasions, the demands for bakers has increased tremendously too. Now, a lot of people have started having desserts and bread on a daily basis which has increased the work for bakers and so, new bakers are always welcome in the market. Although baking demands a lot of creativity and talent which is why you need to have a natural talent for cooking if you want to succeed as a baker. A baker can make all sorts of foods like muffins, tarts, pies, bread rolls, pastries, cakes, and so on. They often create new recipes and use properly measured ingredients to get it right. It is not easy to be a baker but if you have the passion for it then you certainly can be one.
1. Tasks of a Baker
Now, before you decide to become a baker it is important that you first understand the tasks that you will need to perform as a baker. This will not only include making baked goods and desserts but will include several other functions as well:
- Bakers need to select the right equipment and technology needed for the baking process
- Bakers need to keep a check on the production schedule
- Bakers need to decide the types of baked goods that are to be made and in what quantity
- Bakers need to ensure everyone is adhering to the food safety guidelines and is using fresh and safe ingredients only for baking
- Bakers need to read and measure the different ingredients that are needed for the baking process
- Bakers need to perform the rolling and shaping of their dough so that it can be baked at a particular temperature
- Bakers also need to choose appropriate toppings to decorate the finished product.
A baker needs to be an expert in all of the above tasks in order to succeed and expand his career opportunities in baking and needs to be more creative in his baking. A skilled and experienced baker often has a chance to work abroad which will fetch him/her both exposure and a better salary.
2. Eligibility to become a Baker
Although there is no formal qualification required to become a baker, it bodes well if you have a few certifications or diploma in bakery or confectionary courses. If you get some elementary training in baking, icing, etc. then you are likely to do better than the numerous bakers which are already competing with you for better jobs and pay. This is true because baking requires you to use the exact ingredients and a small mistake could damage your food for good. So, if you wish to excel in the baking field then you have to enroll in some baking and cooking classes which are organized by the numerous hotel management institutes. Such institutes provide the students with a certificate or a diploma after the successful completion of the course and also give their students an opportunity to work with foreign bakery companies.
You can also get admission to a 3-year hotel management degree program to better your chances in the bakery field. To get the admission, you need to give the Joint Entrance Examination for which you need to be a 10+2 graduate. Once this program is successfully completed, the candidates can further opt to specialize by taking a course in bakery and confectionary. There are a lot of private hotel management institutes which offer such courses but only allow students who have obtained good marks in 12th standard.
You can also choose bakery as a career after taking a few short-term courses in bakery and confectionary which often lasts from 4-6 months but you need to have good marks in 10th/12th standard to be eligible for them. Although most bakery courses focus on baking tips and tricks, a bakery also needs to learn about food safety and sanitation, nutrition, management, bakery process, the operation of heavy-duty machinery, and so on. One needs to be well-versed in baking, purchasing, menu planning, hospitality management, etc. if they want to succeed as a baker. A few specialized courses in cake decoration, plating, pairing, and sugar artistry also does wonders for the baker and can really boost their career.
3. Career Options in Baking
So, what all prospects are available in the baking field? Well, bakers should be glad because there is a lot of job opportunities both in India and abroad. However, if you have a certificate or a diploma from a hotel management institute then you have more chances of progressing in your career. Another thing to note is that initially, you will need to start work as an apprentice or a trainee for an experienced baker in a commercial bakery or patisserie where the mentor will help you to hone your skills. This will also be helpful in getting you exposure so that you can become the chief baker once you have mastered all the important baking and food handling techniques.
You can classify bakers into three major categories:
This type of bakers usually works in a retail shop where they use automated machines to produce bread and other baked goods.
Plant bakers usually work in big commercial bakeries and industries where they need to produce baked goods in bulk by operating big machinery like ovens, mixers, and so on.
A craft baker puts in more manual effort to make baked goods and often specializes in a particular type of baking process or bread. They produce baked goods in small quantity and often work for small-scale bakeries, restaurants, etc.
In the baking environment, there are different positions available to a baker which he can accomplish after mastering a few skills and specializing in a particular area. Here are a few career paths that a baker can take:
- Dessert Specialist
- Cafeteria Baker
- Confectionary Baker
- Cake Stylist
- Bread Chef, etc.
All bakers have to start from the same level and have to perform more or less the same tasks which involve supervising the entire baking process and then selecting the best equipment for the production process.
You can easily find a job as a baker in a range of places like restaurants, hotels, supermarkets, bakeries, grocery stores, and commercial bakery industries. Your role and tasks will depend from job to job and are largely dependent on your employee.
Apart from baking, bakers can also move to other career options like caterers, food researchers, TV celebrity chef, food columnists, and instructors. You can also set up your own bakery store or a home bakery to sell your produced baked goods. Both of these have a lot of potential in the current scenario and can really help you in expanding your career as a baker.
Also, if you have proper qualifications and knowledge then you might easily find a good job abroad which will pay you more and will give you better benefits. The opportunities are endless for a baker and all you need to do is hone your baking skills to get the best result.
4. Average Salary of Bakers
Salary of bakers usually tends to fluctuate depending on the location and the baker’s skills and qualifications. If you are in a city where there are fewer bakers available then obviously you are at a great advantage although that might also mean that bakery isn’t particularly famous in such places. On the other hand, if you try your luck in a city with an abundance of bakers then you might find a job but the pay would be minimum. In India, a baker usually earns an average of Rs 10,000 – 15,000 per month in the starting which can increase depending on the location and the baker’s skills.
The salary is better for an experienced baker and often ranges between Rs 35,000 – 50,000 per month depending on the skills and qualifications. Of course, working in a high scale restaurant or bakery means that the pay will be great too and bakers would receive several amazing benefits like health insurance, sick leaves, and so on. Bakers can also increase their monthly salary by taking more shifts like early morning, late nights, weekends, etc.
Some bakers also go ahead and open their home bakery where they can easily earn Rs 8,000 – 10,000 per month in the starting which can further increase as their bakery grows popular. Many bakers also open their bakery outlets or stores and often earn more than other bakers out there. If successful, then a bakery owner can earn a profit of Rs 2 lakhs – 5 lakhs during the busy season which can be great for their yearly income.
However, bakers who work in abroad companies fare the best as they often start with a salary of Rs 40,000 which tends to increase with their experience and their work. So, make sure you have the necessary certifications and diplomas to get the best job opportunity for yourself.