Social media is about building relationships, and it can be used in a supply chain to build and grow communications among trading partners. Information and knowledge gathered from the use of social media by supply chain partners can provide insight into various issues.
Social media allows supply chain participants to monitor supply chain events and transactions to keep everyone up-to-date with current situations, such as a delay in shipping or a carrier failed to pick-up a shipment. Providing companies with more timely and insightful information about risks and events, enabling them to make corrective action sooner – minimizing the impact of a supply chain disruption.
Despite all the major advances in supply chain management and technology in recent years, most restaurants and their suppliers still don’t have a single, integrated, real-time view of supply and demand when working together in an enterprise. The lack of visibility creates a fractured supply chain; one in which the restaurant operator and its suppliers do not operate in sync, resulting in bloated inventory, excessive waste, supply uncertainty, and poor customer service for all parties concerned.
So in many ways, the restaurant industry is defined by paradoxes. Consumers want quality food at affordable prices. Product freshness is a must, regardless of seasonal variability. Cost and customer service come bundled – not à la carte.
Here’s how procuring works at a typical restaurant. At the end of dinner service, the chef or sous-chef compiles a list of everything they will need for the next day’s service. Once there are tallies, the chef calls and leaves messages with orders for delivery.
Some restaurants order from separate companies for produce, meat, fish, dried goods, and cleaning supplies. Others make one call to a large all-purpose company, such as Sysco or Gordon Food Service – (you know those big trucks you see across the country). Although these companies may get the lowest prices and deliver everything at once, they rarely have the best product.
“If the world made sense,” says Saif Altimimi, CEO of ChefHero, “there would be a single place for chefs to go to order from their suppliers, similar to how you would go to Amazon.”
Founded in 2015, young startup ChefHero is a market network which connects food wholesalers, importers, and vendors to restaurants, hotels, schools, and grocery stores. Its online platform makes it easy and efficient for chefs, restaurateurs, franchise HQs among other buyers, to streamline and save money on all their procurement needs on any device at any time.
With ChefHero, gone are the days of faxes, late-night voicemails and texts. The company, which launched March 2016, allows buyers to place multiple orders, with a variety of participating suppliers, all at once.
Once you’ve registered, you can:
- Add & connect with new vendors in your area
- View updated prices
- Reorder previous deliveries with one tap
- Create customizable order guides
- Keep track of your orders and invoices
ChefHero is 100% free and easy to set up. There are no hidden fees of costly features intended to add unwelcome expenses to orders. Areas currently being served: Greater Toronto Area, Kitchener/Waterloo, Cambridge, Guelph, London, Burlington, Hamilton.
With this approach, a restaurant could reduce its on-hand inventory, while maintaining high service levels for sales. A study conducted by the Bureau of Applied Research in Anthropology at the University of Arizona found that food waste in restaurants ranges between 3 and 10 percent. The lack of coordination between the restaurant operator and its suppliers only intensifies overstocking as well as the shortages.
It’s been really good. First of all, for transparency. Everyone’s able to see what other people in the team are ordering. We have a wealth of options from different suppliers, we’re not constrained. Now, if we can’t find it on ChefHero, we don’t want it. Suppliers are incredibly old school, only wanting us to call or email them. We don’t have time to keep track of papers, I can’t even hold onto one piece of paper. I just don’t have time to talk to someone on the phone for 15 minutes when all I want to do is place an order. Also, your customer service is amazing, we get the same sense that you guys are a startup and are fighting for your customers, and we really appreciate that. Working with someone who comes from a genuine place and really cares about your business, as opposed to just getting every dollar out of us is amazing, because we really don’t have that much!
Chris, Owner of Strange Love Coffee, an award winning café and concept space in Toronto –
Lessons for Others
Social media can be an invaluable tool for supply chain professionals looking to identify new innovations, understand commodity and pricing trends, capture best practices, and collaborate with stakeholders, peers, and suppliers. It can improve existing processes, mitigate risk, and increase efficiencies. By tapping the collective insights and knowledge of supply chain participants, businesses can drive innovation within their supply chains, which leads to continuous improvement and business growth.
Industry: Food & Beverage
Name of Organization Contact: N/A - touched base, provided contact information - unfortunately didn't hear back
Authored by: Farah Hafez
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