Managing supply chain operations efficiently is the secret recipe to the success of any restaurant. Starting from the procurement of the materials involved in the preparation of dishes to the food served on the table, many factors affect cost. Unless an efficient supply chain management system is in place, unnecessary expenses will burn a hole in your pocket.
Every restaurateur wonders how to streamline restaurant supply chain operations. Gone are the days when restaurants used to depend on manual tasks and spreadsheets for forecasting the material requirement, calculating inventory levels, and dealing with vendors. Using technology to streamline restaurant supply chain management would be the best move for the smooth operations of your restaurant.
How Technology Powers 5 Key Supply Chain Management Areas
While managing your restaurant’s supply chain, 5 major factors need to be focused on. Let’s explore how to streamline restaurant supply chain operations with technology, in detail.
1. Demand Forecasting
A major pain area in supply chain management is forecasting the exact demand. You might have dealt with situations where the predictions went wrong, and you were not able to meet the expectations of customers.
Imagine a case where your restaurant comes up with a new chocolate dessert, a signature dish. If the dessert becomes an instant hit and you can’t keep up with the demand due to the shortage of a major ingredient, you’ll lose business. This is where technology helps you anticipate and mitigate these situations and boost your business.
With India’s leading digital supply chain management platform like inresto SCM , you will get alerts on minimum threshold quantities for ingredients that go into the preparation of the dishes. These alerts come to your rescue in arranging the raw materials required for multiple outlets spread across locations. You no longer have to worry about facing a disappointed customer.
One more scenario is where the food items get wasted due to inaccurate forecasting. In such cases too, digital platforms come to your rescue by providing precise insights that manual systems simply can’t provide.
2. Vendor Management
An integral part of your restaurant operations is to ensure that there is a timely and adequate supply of quality raw materials that meets the standards. Choosing the wrong vendor can prove detrimental as you may end up getting substandard products. As a result, you may receive negative reviews on social media about the poor quality of food served which your business certainly cannot afford. Hence, vendor management is of prime importance, as the quality of food depends on the quality of materials supplied by the vendor.
Using digital platforms, you can compare and select the vendors who can supply the best quality raw materials at the cheapest rates. Hence, it’s pretty easy to streamline vendor management thereby, optimising prices and quantity. The insights offered by digital platforms help you make timely decisions to boost your profits in the long run.
3. Purchase Order Management
If you’re running multiple restaurants across regions, you may face short of raw materials in some outlets. At the same time, in other outlets, you may encounter an opposite problem of food wastage due to overstocking. When you’re placing the orders manually based on the data available in spreadsheets, there are high chances of your forecasts going wrong.
Digital platforms like inresto SCM generate purchase orders for all the outlets based on various demand and forecast insights. Further, it also sends these purchase orders to the relevant vendors. This seamless integration helps your restaurant get rid of the problems of raw material shortage and excess stock.
4. Inventory Management
Spoiled raw materials are a huge cost burden on most restaurants, especially when it comes to perishable items. Further, in case of expensive ingredients, the spoilage costs incurred on your restaurant increases drastically.
For those food ingredients with lower shelf life, you need to be well informed before placing the stock replenishment order. After all, it’s your hard-earned money that goes to waste due to the absence of a proper forecasting system. Thus, using technology to streamline restaurant supply chain operations eliminates all such instances.
With digital SCM platforms, real-time inventory tracking is possible by leveraging the recipe and sub recipe management processes. So, the system automatically updates the inventory status based on orders, and you will receive timely notifications. Now, you can monitor the livestock status from any location without worrying about the drop in inventory levels.
5. Consumption Management
One of the major factors that affect the smooth functioning of any restaurant is the mismatch in stock. Preparing a particular dish requires a certain quantity of food materials. If the ideal quantity of ingredients is missing in the inventory, you can have two possible reasons for it. It can either be due to pilferage or wastage. In this case, using technology to streamline the restaurant’s supply chain would be the best option.
With the help of process-driven supply chain management, wastage and pilferage can be curbed to a large extent. It not only helps to optimize the use of your kitchen resources but also brings down the overall grocery cost.
Theft by staff is another major reason that badly affects consumption management. Manually tracking the inventory is really not practical as you cannot keep an eye on the staff all the time. Moreover, you cannot question the employees without any proper evidence as it affects the employer-employee relations and decreases morale. Now, digital platforms leave no scope for theft and you can track and monitor all your supplies with ease.
Streamlining restaurant supply chain operations assumes significant importance due to the complexity of the inventory management process in today’s times. Though with manual efforts you can optimise day-to-day operation costs, you can only do it to a certain extent. When most businesses are leveraging digital opportunities, you cannot afford to miss the tremendous benefits offered by sophisticated SCM platforms. After all, every penny saved adds to your restaurant’s cash reserves in the long run.