The increasing focus on delivering value to the consumer at the most efficient possible cost is ever present in today’s changing business environment. An increase in interest towards logistics and supply chain management is noticeable. After all, performance is not only defined by initial actions and decisions but also any further improvements and pay offs gained.
What is Supply Chain Management?
The activities that work alongside the flow and manufacturing of goods from raw materials to the end product as well as flow information such as processes and net amounts. This includes but is not limited to materials and other information that goes up and down the chain. By definition, this means that a supply chain includes a variety of small systems that make a big difference. Whether it’s systems management, operations, purchasing, assemblies and schedules.
Keeping costs low while offering quality products and services is what most hospitality companies are prioritising, whether big or small. The labour intensive nature of the hotel and hospitality industry forces many hotels to make bigger and bolder moves when it comes to reducing the cost of operations.
Usually these come in the form of payroll and other employee associated changes such as hiring freezes, reduced bonuses and salaries etc. The one aspect of the industry that is never compromised, however, is the logistics and supply chain. Even if logistics and supply chains are considered background operations management aspects, they still play a big role in providing value to their properties.
A well oiled and well strategized logistics and supply management system is essential in giving individual companies a wide competitive edge. The right strategies within the right time can not only improve quality but also potentially drive down costs. Building and forming steady connections within a network of suppliers and working with good ordering systems are just a few ways in which industry staff are able to improve customer service levels.
The benefits of an effective and well integrated system of logistics and supply chain management allows companies in the hotel industry to deliver consistently and reliably at their peak with the best costs.
Best Practices for an Efficient Hotel Industry Supply Chain
The global footprint of the hotel industry is massive. As such, SCM systems in the hotel industry can get very complicated, especially for those that manage a wide array of hotel chains.
Here are some of the best practices to improve or start an efficient hotel supply chain:
Take advantage of the wonders of today’s technology as it may very well hold the key to maximizing cost in our current knowledge-based society.
Automating most, if not all SCM processes in the hotel industry is a lot more accessible now more than ever. With a wide range of solutions specific for your hotel industry information systems, streamlining the supply chain process can be done with a click of a button.
However, be aware of how much you are automating, as too much reliance on these digital systems makes it more prone to being compromised. Ideally, certain aspects that are important to your supply chain management must still be handled manually.
Formulate and draft an effective strategy using questions that are relevant to your current situations. It is important to maximise the streamlining process to minimise any added wastages or risk.
Taking count of both long term and short term goals is essential in a perfect strategy. Having this serves as a guideline to any future improvements and as a way to measure the success of your system based on turnouts and baselines.
Being part of the hospitality industry, the main focus of each and every product and service produced must be to the benefit of the customer. Their experiences must be at the core of any management chain, regardless of where it may be.
As such, collaborating and gathering first hand information from your customers is a must. Collect ratings through social media, surveys, questionnaires etc. This helps not only understand how customers feel about your product and service but also provides an insight on your growth and where to go from there.
Cut down and reduce any wasted costs from your logistics by making it leaner and more efficient. Using techniques like first in first out, automated ordering, quick deliveries, etc. are all ways in which this can be done.
This may be more important to smaller hotels within the industry as difference on providing a high level of service comparable to bigger chains may rest solely on the efficiency and the volume of quality.
Moving towards a more lean logistic style of management can be hard, as such here are some tips in integrating this system smoothy.
- Make ordering more efficient by integrating booking data
- Maximise resources used whether within or outside to company to minimise waste
- Hire material suppliers with a good reputation and faster turn around
- Use automation wisely
- When storing perishables or other food related product, it is recommended you use the First In First Out technique
- Manage and control inventory constantly and employ real-time inventory management systems
These are just some of the many ways in creating efficient hotel SCM and undoubtedly there are more out there to explore. Taking risks is important but learning to minimise risk is the difference between a good system and an even greater one.
Having professional standards to your Supply Chain Management locks in commitment from suppliers to ensure that your company is getting only the most top quality products and services. Efficient SCMs help significantly cut down on costs through enabling the development and implementation of agreements with your suppliers.