The food and beverage inventory and asset process can be complex, but it is controllable, with the right solutions.
Neo Gardens (company name changed for confidentiality reasons) is a company that provides food and beverages to supermarkets. Like many other companies in the food and beverages industry, Neo Gardens also faced some unique challenges in their inventory management. Factors such as broken pieces of machinery, irregular maintenance, and demands from the supermarkets played a crucial role in their asset management system. They needed to keep all these factors in mind while coming up with a strategy that will help keep the inventory and asset holding costs low, but also have enough stock of equipment on hand to meet demands.
With that in mind, Custella helped them with some crucial asset management tools and improve their field service optimization.
The food and beverage industry faces numerous obstacles when it comes to its warehouse, especially when it comes to machine assets/inventory. Keeping the freezers, air-conditioners, and other essential machines running smoothly means there needs to be regular maintenance in place. A minor inadequacy could result in a portion of spoiled food, which would make them unable to deliver their products on time. Maintaining their equipment i.e. preventive maintenance (before the machines go down) plays a crucial role in making sure the quality of their products is always top-notch so that delivering them to the supermarkets can be done smoothly. The stock of Neo Gardens was perishable, which requires their machines to run smoothly, 24/7.
They also had to keep up with the safety regulations, which meant the food and beverages needed to comply with health standards. So unlike traditional asset management, Custella helped them come up with a system that would ensure that their machines were regularly checked, and they always had enough spare parts in case something does not go according to the plan.
Before Custella could make improvements, an overall look at the current procedure was necessary. In order to create purpose-driven asset management, understanding the main problems they were facing was necessary so that Neo Gardens could focus on the specific aspects of their system that needed improvements. Custella consulted with the relevant team members in the process and identified the problems accordingly to ensure that the optimization done for their field service teams were suitable.
Identifying The Problem
The main issue was, their equipment lacked regular preventative maintenance that was a crucial requirement in a company that deals with food and beverage. Secondly, they had several outlets in different locations, and when something went wrong with a freezer or the air conditioner, it took a substantial amount of time to locate the spare parts needed to repair them. To improve their asset management, increasing command of the warehouse operations and the stock of the spare parts was equally necessary.
With Custella, Neo Gardens was able to improve the following areas immediately:
Once the repair work for a machine was done, all information related was recorded in Custella, such as the condition of the machine and the quantity of spare parts used among others.
The next maintenance was automatically created upon the completion of the current maintenance to ensure there is no oversight both in scheduling or knowing when the next maintenance is due.
The list of the spare parts all across their outlets was also listed under one section of the app, with their pictures attached, ensuring their real-time visibility to relevant team members. They were able to see the number of spare parts in their inventory, the movement of spare parts as well as the condition leveraging off Custella’s virtual warehouse functionality. Being able to do this with approval controls ensured robust management of their machines and reduced downtime tremendously.
With all this information in one place, they could also be notified when they were running low on supplies, and get them on hand before any real damage is done.
Once they stock up, their inventory was digitized, by updating their product list in the Custella app and displaying it correctly - - simplifying the tracking of this information.
To locate each item, the staff checked in from the app, updating the data in real-time as they go
With the right preventative maintenance, Neo Gardens was able to avoid unexpected breaking down of machinery. And with the right asset control, they always had enough supply of their stocked spare parts, reducing the complexity of the job orders, and improving their overall business performance. They were able to make better and more informed decisions by automatically tracking the condition of their machines and spare parts, all in one place. Additionally, they were able to keep up to the quality of products as per their agreement commitments with supermarkets much better than before.
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