For those who deliver wedding cakes, I assume you get a signature upon delivery stating that the cake is delivered and in perfect condition, etc. My question though is obviously the bride or groom usually is not going to be there waiting to sign for it, but who signs then? Do you work that out with the bride beforehand and designate a responsible party for signing for reciept of cake? I can't imagine just grabbing someone who is standing around and asking for them to sign. How do you experts handle this?
I don't get anyone to sign off. For D&R's, I set it up and leave.
As a caterer, who might be there when another caker deliver the wedding cake .... no way am I signing off on anything!
Let the staff know at the site when your setting up that you need someone to sign off on the cake. Once you leave it's their responsibility if anything goes wrong and you'll have proof of it. I guarentee if something went wrong after you leave but before the bride gets there they'll pass the blame onto you, so don't take a chance.
I never bother to try to get anyone to sign off an a cake. There's rarely anyone who would have any knowledge of what the cake contract said there when I deliver, and like Debi said, if it was me I'm not signing for anything that I didn't order. The only time that I've ever tried to get anyone to sign for a cake they gave me the hairy eyeball and didn't understand why I was trying to get a signature.
In my contract I have a clause that says I will take pictures of the cake as proof of delivery. If the cake is going to have to be moved, or if I think that something looks weird about the setup I take extra pictures to show where the cake was in the room when I set it up. I once delivered a cake where there was NOTHING in place two hours before the reception. It was the right place, but nobody was around and nothing had been set up. I put the cake on a table and took plenty of photos to show that nothing was ready in case they dumped the cake over when they did move it later.
Thanks everyone! I like the photo as proof idea. I'll be taking a photo anyway, so that is a good way to always have proof of delivery and condition of cake upon delivery.
I have an additional portion of my contract that the bride gives her signature on when ordering the cake. This portion of the contract explains that if the bride is not available for signature upon delivery, then family members or venue employees are allowed to use their best judgement on whether the cake is in acceptable condition & sign for the cake. Most brides are not around at the time & have no problem with this. I've never had a problem before, but like to get a signature just so I'm covered if anything were to happen after I leave.
Adding to my earlier comment, if a bride does the "oh sure, anyone at the venue can sign for it!", I'd suggest that you ask her, "Have you cleared that with "anyone" at the venue? Does "anyone" at the venue KNOW they will be signing off? Is the venue WILLING to sign off?"
Because if you, as the cake lady, approach me, the caterer, and tell me "the bride said you could sign this", I'll tell you where to shove the pen because no one cleared it with me that I would have to approve a cake. I didnt' order it, I have no idea if it's even the right cake, I am not signing off on anything.
And if a bride asks me in advance to sign off in her behalf, I will gladly tell her all of my reasons why I will not do that.
So the bride saying "anyone" can sign off is WAY different than actually GETTING "anyone" to sign off. Be sure the bride has HER ducks on a row if you require a sign off.
Yes, on my form "family members" or "venue employees" are designated by name so it's not just anybody signing for the cake. I make sure to get specifics because I don't want any problems or confusion (eg: The bride possibly saying "I don't know who that is, this person wasn't invited to my wedding!"). So, I always get the specifics. If it is not a family member, then it will be a venue employee such as the catering manger, etc. of the hotel (not just any employee walking around). I've been providing my services for most of the hotels & other venues in my area for a long time. There are not many other cake decorators in my town so they all know me by name & do not have a problem signing for my cakes if designated family members are not around & I have the permission from the bride agreeing the venue can sign.
As for other vendors.....I never have other vendors sign for my cakes, as I figure they are busy doing their own things to get ready for the wedding. I actually feel that it would be unprofessional to ask other vendors to step away from what they are doing & take time out of their schedule to come look at my cake. I also think it would make me look unorganized just asking anyone I could find to sign for the cake. Gee, if someone asked me out of the blue to sign for flowers, decorations or anything else that I had nothing to do with, I don't think I would be willing to do it either!
I am with Indy - there is rarely anyone there who remotely knows anything about the cake when I deliver. I take several pictures of the cake for proof of how it looked when I left it. It has never been an issue for me.
I agree with Debi and Loucinda - rarely is there someone at the venue that knows anything about the cake and where it needs to be set up when I arrive. Once, the only person available was the janitor, and he wasn't about to sign off on delivery!
I take photos - closeups to show my work (and for my portfolio), and long-shots for setup "just-in-case"!
I arrange with the bride/ whoever places the order, a list of 2-3 people that know exactlly what the cake 'should' look like and their phone numbers. The bride's are told if the people they designated aren't there I will call, if they don't arrive within 15 min. I leave and there are no guarantees that they received the right cake or that it was in good condition.
I always take photos at the venue for proof of course, but I like the idea of the paper being signed, I always tell the bride's that it's just as much to cover them as it is to cover me, because it gives the person signing an opportunity to say something, if they thing soemthing isn't right or the cake is leaning or whatever else they can come up with WHILE I'M STILL THERE......not 2 days later when they have buyers remorse!!
here is the form i make them sign
I agree that the ____________________________ for __________________________ was delivered and set up at the agreed upon time of __________ am/pm and that it was left in good condition (structurally and asthetically) and will not hold Tina's Sugar Shack responsible
for any damages occuring to the ____________________ because of surroundings (placement of table, guests, d.j. speakers/vibrations,etc.) after it has been signed for.
Signed: ______________________________________________ (responsible persons designated by person placing order)
Tina's Sugar Shack representative sig:____________________________________________________