How to Find Restaurant Supply Chain Solutions
Strong supply chain management is important for the restaurant industry because it helps the entire system to work smoothly. A restaurant business thrives on the back of good food and the overall dining experience. And it's a swift running of the backend processes that makes meeting the demand and supply easier. It is only possible if the supply chain technology a restaurant uses is efficient and is designed to identify and solve operational challenges before it becomes a problem.
Sometimes, even the best businesses suffer because of an inept system. Underestimating the demand-supply system, and not taking cognizance of the surplus or deficit can oftentimes lead to major losses. One of the best examples, in this case, could be of Louisville, KY headquartered KFC and its 2018 debacle in the UK region. A subsidiary of Yum! Brands, KFC is the second-largest restaurant chain in the world (the first being McDonalds). And, it has grown so big with consistent investment in newer technology.
But, in 2018, it had to close more than half of its 900 UK outlets after running out of chicken. There was a delivery problem when the chain switched its third-party logistics (supply-chain) operations from food specialist Bidvest Logistics to the international behemoth DHL. News reports, at the time, that analyzed the problem attributed it to DHL's limited distribution center. DHL had one location servicing throughout the country, while Bidvest had six. As unfortunate as it sounds, it massively hit the share prices of the company and also disrupted the entire business.
Usually, companies offering supply chain management win business deals by offering lower costs and greater efficiencies. But slightest oversight or laxity in either of the two can lead to a botched-up system or major losses. That is the reason that a new restaurant business should consider a few important factors while finding the best supply chain solution for their business. An efficient supply chain solution would-
- Research and review suppliers, distributors, and carriers.
- Investigate the quality as well as safety measures followed in facilities where the supply is stored and transported in.
- Manage inventory as per changing customer demands.
- Label the supply accurately to avoid last-minute confusion and compliance with FDA.
- Make informed forecasts based on previous data and newer trends.
- Perform regular audits to ensure compliance and brand integrity.
- Use an optimized tracking system to identify spoiled food sources or deliver real-time data on food safety audits.
- In the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, most supply-chain solutions also adhere to health guidelines and ensure that they are followed through the process.
If you are new to the restaurant business and are looking for a supply chain management partner, make sure to keep a checklist to see what a probable partner is offering.
How Can Foodservice Chain Solutions Help You?
The primary objective of Foodservice Chain Solution is to identify the demand of the business and ascertain that every item sold is high-quality and meets all the safety protocols. One of the prerequisites of any food-related business is to supervise the FDA regulations closely and to ascertain that quality, nutrition, and safety norms are followed.
Foodservice Supply Chain Solutions streamline all these and automate management tasks. In the below-mentioned points, we underline the key benefits of using a restaurant supply chain solution.
1. It simplifies the process of adhering to FDA rules and any other required protocols.
Not complying with food safety regulations may lead to complicated issues later in the business. The Food Safety Modernization Act in the United States is aimed at preventing food-borne illnesses. It has six major rules laid down for any food business. They include-
- Preventative Control- Every food facility must identify any physical hazards related to food and outline the preventative controls required to mitigate any risk.
- Produce Safety- It is to ascertain that science-based standards are followed for the growing, harvesting, packaging, and holding of food items. It also ensures that any contamination is avoided by implementing water quality testing.
- Foreign Supplier Verification Program- It is to ensure that foreign suppliers comply with FDA regulations.
- Accredited Third-Party Certification- Establishes a voluntary program for third-party certification wherein organizations are accredited after safety audits.
- Sanitary Transportation- Ensures that food safety standards are followed in the logistics chain.
- Intentional Adulteration- This requires facilities to implement a written Food Defense Plan that identifies strategies to handle vulnerabilities in any food processing facility.
Each of these rules requires expertise in food management. As navigating them is an arduous process, supply chains utilize automated, optimized software solutions to ensure compliance.2. The solution monitors food data to reduce risk and loss.
Food industry professionals use temperature monitoring systems to comply with regulations and prevent contamination. It is done by using real-time data at storage and transportation facilities. For instance, RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) is a data collection technology to identify the quality standard of food items through low-power radio waves. Operators can track food inventory with the data provided by this solution and re-ordering if needed.3. Supply Chain solution streamlines the process of procuring and delivery with ease.
Software solutions integrate well with mobile devices and let administrators keep a tab on the inventory from any location at any time. Thus, giving authorized individuals the access to update inventory and address any suspicious activity.
Restaurant industry leaders are continually working on solutions that do more than just meet the logistical needs of the growing but struggling restaurant industry. Nifty solutions are being devised to diminish the effects that the pandemic has thrust on the industry.
Your restaurant is struggling.
Your restaurant is struggling to keep up with the demand, and you're not sure what to do.
1. Creative Marketing
There's a bunch of new job titles that've been added to the traditional jobs, or in some cases even replaced some really old ones. One of them is advertising tech talent. What exactly do they do? In a profile like that, tech talents work on marketing and advertising solutions that are intrinsically unique to contemporary times.
When the KFC debacle unfolded in 2018, the restaurant chain had to navigate a lot of criticism from customers as well as industry peers. But the chain that is known for its finger lickin' good chicken thought it better to make light of the situation while addressing its followers on Twitter. "The chicken crossed the road, just not to our restaurants," KFC said on Twitter, as the people were informed of the exact situation. For its time, it was a well-thought-out creative strategy that even with the losses incurred due to logistical failure, won the restaurant chain a few admirers.
Now, three years and a full-blown pandemic later, just a funny jibe on Twitter may not work well as a creative marketing exercise. But developers of Supply Chain Solutions have devised ways to deal with the situation. One of the rising trends is intelligent or smart packaging. It enhances communication between consumers and brands.
With various technologies and methods, real-time information about a product is relayed to retailers and customers through packaging. Barcodes and QR Codes are some of the methods that are really common. Intelligent packaging has embedded sensors that allow one to track the product, sense an attribute of the packaged food or its immediate environment, and communicate it to the user (such as manufacturer or consumer).
2. The Restaurant Supply Chain Solution
Restaurants are looking at the Restaurant Supply Chain Solution to build a healthy, long-lasting connection with their distributors, improve performance and figure out new concepts and service models. A successful supply chain management helps you with-
- Planning and Forecasting
- Tracking Supplies
- Expanding restaurant service models
- Monitoring revenue, cost, and inventory
3. Additional Solutions that Will Help Your Restaurant
Integrating a powerful, responsive and effective POS (Point Of Sale) System can help you operate and monitor the entire operation seamlessly, and will also increase transparency in your business. A restaurant POS system is an advanced and digital billing software that has the following features-
- Product management
- Order management
- Purchase management
- Staff management
- Inventory management
Restaurant supply chain solutions are not always the most convenient.
Managing a restaurant can be hard work, and sometimes it can feel like you’re doing everything on your own.
To sum it up, Restaurant Supply Chain Solutions can help a budding restaurant in the following ways-
- In a comprehensive way, the Solution supervises the raw materials that would be used in a restaurant business.
- It intricately looks at food production, selection, presentation, and preservation.
- It also ensures quality and safety of food products before consumer consumption.
- A restaurant supply chain solution helps operators in complying with FDA guidelines.
- An efficient system helps a restaurant business in navigating regulations, monitoring and using food data to reduce losses and minimize risks.
- It streamlines the entire supply chain and management that helps in smooth functioning of a business.