As a family-owned distributor, Florida Food Service (FFS) has served food service operators throughout North Florida since 1948. And as a member of the nation’s largest food service coop, UniPro Food Service, FFS has extensive buying power and access to at least 600 of the best manufacturer products and services.
An advocate of the latest technology, FFS employs web-based ordering, full-fleet telematics to ensure cold chain, delivery fleet GPS tracking, upon-delivery product scans, and other state-of-the-art solutions.
“Information technology is critical to the success or failure of any business,” Florida Food Service President, Joel Islam says. “This is especially true in the food service industry, with its high demand for customer service and historically low margins.”
Yet, the distributor had a painful void when it came to insightful and actionable business information, especially as it related to growth management, vendor performance, and lost-business prevention. With approximately 9,000 SKUs, it was difficult to manage vendor, category, and territory growth. Meetings with vendors were unproductive due to a lack of vendor details. FFS could not manage transaction volume from the many necessary angles, identify negative trends, or act on potentially lost business before it was too late.
With vendor partnerships being critical to success, FFS sought out an expert industry partner to implement an IT solution.
After a global search, the food distributor hand-selected AFS Technologies (AFS) to implement its AFS G2 Analytics purpose-built CPG analytics application. Its primary aim was to optimally leverage the above-mentioned business opportunities, manage the problems of its ever-growing products, and focus on key vendor partners. In addition, FFS incorporated the AFS ERP solution to gain immediate access to imperative insights with ease.
With the AFS G2 Analytics and ERP systems installed, FFS now easily accesses spreadsheets, multi-tier queries, and graphs in real-time and respond to business needs on a dime. Insights provided through the AFS G2 Analytics enables FFS to manage business growth through profit maximization, vendor management productivity, and lost-business prevention.
“AFS G2 Analytics and ERP has already improved our profit gains,” Islam adds.
Thanks to the AFS G2 solution, FFS can now proactively manage sales trends and maximize profitable sales, and at the same time, reduce or eliminate low-profit sales. The solution’s Management by Exception functionality enables FFS to work with purchasing and sales management on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis, on positive and negative movements. As a result, vendor meetings are now 50 percent more productive with specific sales insights at the fingertips, and lost business data trends make it possible for FFS to recover opportunities before it’s too late.
The dedicated and personalized service and expertise of the AFS Technologies staff was among the differentiators that contributed to the success of this solution, according to the food distributor.
“FFS values integrity and honesty and we believe in treating customers and suppliers as partners,” Islam says.
As a result of the partnership between AFS Technologies and FFS, the food distributor’s customers benefit from its massive buying power now more than ever, yet the operators continue to receive the highly personal independent operation service atmosphere they’ve grown to expect. Today, this combination of technology and taking the time to care, yield the best of both worlds for both the family-owned distributor and its food service operator interests.