Best Practices for Implementing a Wholesale Order Management System for Your Food Supply Business

The food industry has never been more competitive and this competitiveness now requires companies to deploy a robust system to manage wholesale orders effectively. By taking the proper steps to implement a Wholesale Order Management System (WOMS), your company can make a pivotal shift via redefining how your food supply business operates, the optimization of process, and the minimization of logistical challenges.

This article serves as your comprehensive guide to the step-by-step process of implementing an effective WOMS tailored uniquely to your business needs in such a way that you can foster both growth and efficiency.

Start by Assessing Your Business Needs

The first step in the elaborate process of implementing a wholesale order management system for your food business is to conduct a thorough assessment of your business’s operational needs. The best way to go about this process is to start by diving into your order management processes in order to identify pain points or inefficiencies. For perspective, consider some of the following questions when reviewing your processes:

  • Are manual entries causing delays or inaccuracies in warehouse inventory?
  • Is warehouse inventory management unable to keep pace with constantly fluctuating demands or orders from restaurants?
  • Is your overall supply chain suffering from the inefficiencies of inventory management?
  • Do you constantly receive unhappy complaints from restaurants regarding mistakes, timelines for order corrections and credit notes.

Assuming the answer to any of the above questions is yes, finding a new and modern wholesale order management system should be a top priority. Having the ability for advanced features such as predictive ordering to fulfill customer orders and to remind your customers when to order, showcasing your product range to restaurants, automated back order notifications, amendments and GPS tracking for orders, and much more can make or break your wholesale supply business.

Choosing the Right Wholesale Order Management System

Selecting the most suitable WOMS for your wholesale supply food business requires taking the time to carefully consider all of your pain points and identifying a solution that addresses the most factors for the lowest cost. Finding a user-friendly interface that helps with the adoption process for your team should also certainly be an important consideration.

Platforms such as Open Pantry excel at providing these benefits via an all-in-one wholesale online ordering system for suppliers. By offering managed products, pricing, and integrated orders on the supplier side, Open Pantry provides businesses with the tools they need to thrive.

Prioritize Streamlining Order Processes

The first focus when finding and integrating a wholesale order management system for your business should be looking to prioritize the streamlining of the end-to-end order process. This is quite literally the backbone of any food operation. By automating processes where possible, you can reduce manual errors, minimize delays, and ensure a seamless order fulfillment cycle.

An effective wholesale order management system, such as that offered by Open Pantry, should be capable of automatically checking in with your warehouse and storage inventory management system to ensure a product is still available when a restaurant attempts to order.

Emphasize Real-time Warehouse Control

Building off of the aforementioned point, placing an emphasis on real-time warehouse control is a must for any business. Open Pantry offers packing slips and a tablet to help make picking and packing easy. Editing weights, applying back orders which notify customers automatically. Additionally, purchasing reports help to reduce unnecessary waste by ensuring you only purchase exactly what you need to fulfil orders from your customers.

Focus on Seamless Customer Integration

There are many benefits stemming from a wholesale order management system which places a focus on seamless customer integration. Perhaps the most important of these, though, is the fact that improved communication can lead to reduced lead times. A system where orders travel seamlessly between your supply business and the restaurants you serve helps to foster an interconnected ecosystem that minimizes delays and strengthens relationships.

Tips for Choosing Your Wholesale Order Management System

With the above priorities outlined as you begin to look for the right wholesale order management system to suit your needs, it’s worth looking at a few crucial tips for how to actually pick your next system. Above all, consider using the following pieces of advice:

  • Find a WOMS that utilizes artificial intelligence or machine learning to stay ahead of the competition
  • Balance cost with benefits when considering different WOMS providers
  • Think about how easily the WOMS will integrate with the current technology within your wholesale supplier organization and how easily your employees can adapt to the system
  • Consider the residual impacts on suppliers or customers from the immediate aftermath of integrating your system

One of the most important aspects to look for when considering a wholesale order management system is whether or not a demo or trial period is offered. This important span of time is crucial for determining whether the WOMS suits your business needs, and it’s why Open Pantry offers both to prospective customers.

Choose the right wholesale order management system for your needs

The implementation of a Wholesale Order Management System will represent an end-to-end transformative journey for your food supply business. By prioritizing streamlined processes, real-time inventory control, seamless integration, and a concerted effort on embracing technological changes, your business can not only thrive but also lead in a competitive landscape.

Making the choice to upgrade your WOMS, or perhaps implement one for the first time, isn’t just an investment; it’s a commitment to your organization’s growth and excellence. Embark on this journey with our platform in order to streamline your operations and revolutionize your wholesale food supply business as soon as possible.

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Posted on: December 5, 2023
Posted By: Geoff Philcox

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