Snapchef, An Innovative Culinary Company, Moves to Dorchester

The culinary labor company is changing the face of staffing.

Snapchef opening in Dorchester. Photo by Snapchef

Snapchef opening in Dorchester. / Photo via Snapchef

About twenty years ago Todd Snopkowski had a problem finding help as a corporate chef.

He worked with temp agencies to help him staff larger jobs but the people they provided him were more suited for working on a construction site than in a kitchen. They knew how to use a buzzsaw but they didn’t know the difference between a French knife and a German knife. It was a frustrating problem for Snopkowski that he was determined to solve.

In 2003 he launched his answer to the problem: Snapchef.

Snapchef, now based in Dorchester, trains and places skilled kitchen workers in jobs at culinary companies all over the southern New England area. The company places approximately 190 people a day into jobs with companies like Aramark and Sodexo all over New England.

Their new headquarters in Dorchester will serve not only as the company’s main dispatching center but as a training center for new talent. Snopkowski says that one of their keys to success is employing and paying people like it’s a regular job, not short term temp work. The traditional temporary labor model does not work for Snapchef because it is fragmented. Plus, it does not always attract the best quality of worker.

“We hire for the right attitude,” said Snopkowski.

Even if they’re unskilled, he says, his company can use you as long as you are punctual and work hard. Plus, they’ll train you. While they have their share of people at the lower end of the culinary scale, they have plenty of skilled workers from Johnson & Whales and other schools with notable hospitality programs.

“We’re getting the cream of the crop,” said Snopkowski.

Every employee undergoes a thorough background check and is trained in the ServSafe food preparation programs in the company’s main kitchen and its new Dorchester classrooms.

Part of the reason Snapchef moved from their South Boston location to Dorchester is because they’re bursting at the seems. Their new space, in addition to including new dispatching and training space, features significantly more room for the company’s shuttle service. In addition to be a culinary service company Snapchef has to double as a transportation agency. Snapchef shuttles its workers to and from jobs in 27 company owned vans. The vans, Snopkowksi said, make it easier to organize workers but they also make them more reliable and punctual, another break from the traditional temp labor model.

With two additional offices in Worcester and Providence, Snopkowski is optimistic about the company’s future plans as they have secured contracts with the likes of the Intercontinental, Foxwoods, Hyatt and Children’s Hospital, just to name a few.