You’ve researched and found catering suppliers. You’ve completed your due diligence for ingredients. You have a contracted list of products, agreed your pricing and come to an arrangement on the frequency of price reviews. The quality of the wholesale products are good, the delivery slots come around rain or shine and your new business partner couldn’t be more supportive of your kitchen operations.
But how do you know if those prices you’re being charged really are competitive and at this month’s market rates? How do you keep track of price movements where, over time, you’re relying on outdated price lists – without doing any firm checks? We know of course the supplier needs to run their operation and make a profit just the same as you. There will be some prices that become no longer cost-effective and follow the 80/20 rule.
Shifting through invoice upon invoice to find the latest price you’ve been charged; adding this up against the number you’ve bought over varied time periods is a troublesome starting point. Trying to compare these to similar products you have and can purchase from an alternative supplier (keen for your business) leaves you trying to decipher the abbreviated supplier product descriptions. Our kitchen visits still find faded and oil stained delivery notes piled in back offices and loose attempts at pro-rata calculations. These are frequently across differing pack sizes! Pure happiness and joy, said no one… ever!
Comparing apples with apples
There are benchmarking companies who traditionally ask businesses to provide invoice prices via means of scanning, emailing, use of Dropbox (or even by post!). They typically spend expensive hours collating that data, matching it for you and reporting back at a huge cost. And then your prices have their monthly review and you are back to square one again!
Am I paying too much for ingredients?
Caternet’s in-built Price Guide tool gives your business a live comparison of today’s ingredients prices leaving you to see exactly how competitive the key lines you’re buying in really are. This can be at any convenient time for you.
Operating in a simple traffic light system, your live price is shown alongside a benchmarked guide. This automated low-to-high bracket shows where you sit in this range.
- red = you are in the upper end of the most expensive price bracket for this product
- amber = you’re somewhere in the midpoint
- green = this is the best price in the system
Using your live invoice and product data, it compares the same products across the Caternet procurement system and provides a confidential statistical analysis to you. To overcome those supplier descriptions and to help compare ‘apples with apples’ Caternet uses unique technology and our hospitality expertise to create ‘Global Product Names’. With in excess of 139,000 GPNs like-for-like product data is expertly mapped by us, allowing easy comparisons and data to make intelligent buying decisions. This is how to save money and buy more effectively across your organisation.
Caternet is saving money in food businesses across the UK as they buy ingredients at today’s prices. See the other ways you can save time and money when you read what we do.
Neil Shayle is Head of Operations