Purchasing

Total control. Every purchase, every penny.

Purchasing can be one of the most complex areas of hospitality to manage. It's difficult to know exactly what and how much you need and when you need it. And making sure you purchase from approved suppliers and only pay for what you order and receive adds to the challenge.

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The Challenges

  • You’re ordering and paying for more than you need.
  • Staff make unauthorised purchases.
  • It’s hard to stay in control of purchasing, including services, utilities and non-catalogue items.
  • People are buying from their favourite suppliers, not approved vendors.
  • You can’t see the weaknesses in your process.

The Fourth Platform makes it easy.

Key Benefits

  • Mobile solution speeds up the ordering process while putting you in complete control.
  • Automating and rationalising your supplier base reduces prices and overheads.
  • Digital supplier contracts give you automated reminders before a contract expires.
  • Automated processes eliminate wrong deliveries and inaccurate invoices.
  • Ordering is faster thanks to templates, simple reordering and notifications.
  • Mobile ordering app lets you order from anywhere, at any time, while remaining compliant.
  • Predictive ordering keeps stock available on every site and reduces waste.

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Features

Supplier Network

The Problem
The more suppliers you have, the more room for inconsistency. Manual trading leads to piles of paperwork, overpayment and inaccurate records and deliveries.

Our Solution
Trading electronically through our automated supply chain saves everyone money. No other platform has as many fully integrated suppliers. PDF invoicing enables even small or low-volume suppliers to trade electronically. Electronic proof of delivery eliminates paper delivery notes and means invoices are handled in seconds, not days. And robust reporting means you stay in control.

Catalogue Management

The Problem
Piles of supplier catalogues in numerous offices make it virtually impossible to guarantee that all purchasing is made in line with agreed prices.

Our Solution
Online catalogues transform the purchasing process. They improve compliance and processing of guaranteed rebates. Vendor performance reporting makes it easier to see who your stars are, while smart analytics show you what needs attention. You can control pricing by exception and eliminate rogue buying. And automatic loading of products and prices removes unnecessary manual steps in your ordering process.

Ordering

The Problem
When many different sites order items manually from a number of suppliers, you’ve got a recipe for over-payments, under-deliveries and general inefficiency. Managing purchasing permissions can be complex and the checks and balances are time-consuming. Desktop ordering systems rely on managers being in the back-office, which can lead to missed deadlines, stock shortfalls and costly urgent deliveries.

Our Solution
See and control your spend in real time by using suppliers’ electronic product and price lists. Your gross margins improve because you eliminate maverick spending, achieve total purchasing compliance, guarantee rebates and reduce administrative overhead. Notifications of order cut-off times and secure ordering from a mobile phone or tablet mean orders are placed on time so you always have a full product range available. What’s more, ours is the only solution that links to suppliers’ delivery schedules – no more ordering products to arrive on a day the supplier doesn't deliver. Clever spend analytics helps you easily identify where you can make savings or be more efficient.

Ordering mobile app

Suggested Ordering

The Problem
Manual sales and order forecasting is unreliable and can make a serious dent in your margins. Sites throw profit away along with unused food that’s past its sell-by date. They miss revenue opportunities because of inventory shortfalls. And customer service suffers when inadequate prepping causes delays.

Our Solution
Our suggested ordering and guest service planning functionality uses the centrally generated sales forecast to help each site order the right products in the right quantities. Customers get their order quickly because the kitchen has prepped appropriately. Replenishment order quantities are calculated using par stock/reorder point and on-hand balances, and re-ordering for both purchasing and internal transfer is by par value/reorder point.

Budgets & Approvals

The Problem
It’s difficult to establish and maintain effective audit trails and control when you’re buying everything from the smallest food order to the largest CapEx programme. Unreliable, labour-intensive, paper-based processes can’t provide real-time analysis of spend against budget.

Our Solution
Our dashboards bring expenditure to life – and help monitor and track phases of CapEx. Pre-configured menus detailing procurement choices keep sites on-brand and working with approved suppliers. And a full, easy-to-use authorisation process gives instant access to up-to-the-minute spend versus budget information.

Editions

Choose one of four Editions of our purchase-to-pay and Inventory solution, depending on how much control you want.

fIND OUT MORE ABOUT EDITIONS

Purchasing blog posts for you

Increasing restaurant profits through optimised purchasing

Written by: Andrew Levey

With restaurants facing increasing labour spend, food prices and business rates, it’s no surprise that operators are looking at ways they can to reduce their costs. Here we take a look at the purchasing process, and how technology can help automate and gain control.

How to increase your restaurant’s profitability

Written by: Andrew Levey

With increasing pressures from rising food and labour costs and more competition for customers, running your restaurant profitably can be a real challenge. You therefore need to examine ways that you can increase efficiency, increase sales and reduce costs. But where do you start?

Specs

All you need to run Fourth’s products is a device with an internet browser. Yup, that’s it.