An excellent food vendor is the foundation of an excellent restaurant. Freshness, profitability, and overall success are in the hands of the relationships with your restaurant’s suppliers. More than anything, your customers come to your restaurant for the food, so ensuring that your food is always of the highest quality maintains your business’s reputation and profitability.
Even after selecting your food vendors, restaurants commonly lose money during the order process in ways ranging from disorganized inventory management to poor communication. You may have the best food vendors, but that’s only the first step. Your restaurant may still need to improve how it handles its orders to resolve food vendor problems. Consider these tips to protect your restaurant from common vendor mistakes.
How often does your restaurant receive orders from each vendor? If your ingredients can stand more extended periods of storage, like dry or canned goods, consider reducing your orders to weekly or bi-weekly deliveries. By saving your vendor’s time delivering to your restaurant and your time processing shipments, this can reduce your ordering costs. To boost your restaurant’s overall efficiency, consider using fewer vendors to reduce tasks like ordering and managing payments and scheduling deliveries on the same day.
Effectively Track Inventory
By maintaining an accurate inventory, you can cut back not only on food waste but also on wasted profits. Spoiled food costs much more than just its purchase price; it means that your business spends more time ordering food and unloading deliveries. While some food waste can be avoided by adequately checking food upon delivery, ordering too much or too little stock takes up time and resources intended for other projects. If your restaurant often sees excessive food waste, consider evaluating if your inventory strategies are working well.
Effectively Check Your Orders
Food waste isn’t just caused by poor inventory management. One spoiled fruit can destroy the rest of its stock, so check thoroughly to ensure that your orders are fresh. If you consistently receive spoiled food, make sure to keep track in order to reevaluate vendors if needed. Additionally, organizing your delivery in a way that is easy to see ensures that orders are accurately checked over before storing.
Communicate with your Vendors
Your vendors need you as much as you need them. However, that doesn’t stop problems from occasionally arising. When you communicate openly and clearly with your vendors about what your needs and expectations are, it sets the standard service and mutual respect your relationship needs. Then, when an issue arises, you and your vendor can handle the problem with your combined interests in mind. The process of selecting a quality vendor is never easy, and once you’ve found one, both parties need to work to maintain an open and trustworthy bond.
Centralize Payments and Invoices
While some of the most obvious ways to avoid food vendor problems involve dealing directly with your suppliers, the idea of streamlining your orders from an administrative perspective is often overlooked. By keeping detailed track of your payments for each vendor, tracking prices, and monitoring associated labor costs, you can organize your ordering schedule to maximize profits and minimize food and labor waste. Additionally, comparing vendor prices can help you stay on top of rising costs or choose more profitable menu items.
Currently, MarketMan is the only restaurant management software that handles vendor payments, and the platform also includes features such as labor and inventory cost tracking. Interested in improving your vendor payment management processes? Start a free trial or request a demo today